Waring

François Hollande

French president François Hollande characterised the November 13 Paris attacks as an ‘act of war’

“The war is up there on the island, where we’re going to meet it, but there’s no war there, nor could there be. War is dreamlike, but war IS a dream… Where is the war? In the guns and helmets and uniforms? Is it in the rock from which the ore to make the gun was mined, the grass that fed the sheep whose wool went into the uniform, or the sun that lights the battlefield? Not impossible to escape but it tethers as unsubstantially, as lightly, as a dream, the odds binding me inside. I go on with it; I’m not bound like a prisoner, but like a sleeper. Two men meet, and one will give his life for the other, or they will each try to kill the other, while the day is still blandly unfolding around them. The violence I’ve already seen has been as random and abrupt as a dream, always ending in death that seems only to become more and more impossible. I always know that I’m no more than one sharp breath from waking. It’s a breath I can never manage.” – Michael Cisco

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Greeking

Alexis Tsipras, leader of the Greek left-wing party Syriza, was elected Prime Minister of Greece on January 25 (Photo: AFP/Getty)

Alexis Tsipras, leader of the Greek left-wing party Syriza, was elected Prime Minister of Greece on January 25 (Photo: AFP/Getty)

“The light disdain of the Greeks, which I have never ceased to feel under their most ardent homage, did not offend me;  I found it natural. Whatever virtues may have distinguished me from them, I knew that I should always be less subtle than an Aegean sailor, less wise than an herb vendor of the Agora. I accepted without irritation the slightly haughty condescension of that proud race, according to an entire nation of privileges which I have always so readily conceded to those I loved. But to give the Greeks time to continue and perfect their work some centuries of peace were needed, with those calm leisures and discreet liberties which peace allows. Greece was depending upon us to be her protector, since after all we say that we are her master. I promised myself to stand watch over the defenceless god.” Marguerite Yourcenar

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