|Image via Wikipedia|
As the lines approached each other, the trumpeters on both sides sounded the attack and the troops charged each other with a loud shout. First the scythed chariots swung into action at full gallop and created great alarm and terror among the Macedonians, especially since Mazaeus in command of the cavalry made their attack more frightening by supporting with his dense squadrons of horse.Alexander had met Darius once before, at the battle of Issus. Arbela (perhaps more commonly referred to these days as Gaugamela) also saw a huge host arrayed before the young Macedonians. For the Persians reflected the Old Order, inheritors of all the power and riches of the Cradle of Civilization itself. It was the Old Order vs. the Upstarts, in an ancient test of Schumpeter's Gale. It was an inflection point: either things would continue as they were or they would change utterly.
- Diodorus Siculus, 17.40
The Old Order was swept away, in Alexander's greatest of all his great victories. Not for nothing does history call him "The Great" - Alexander was able to see past the vast numbers and gathered power of the Persian host and see the weaknesses, and how to exploit them.
As the phalanx joined shields, however, all beat upon their shields with their spears as the king had commanded and a great din arose. As the horses shied off, most of the chariots were turned about and bore hard with irresistible impact against their own ranks. Others continued on against the Macedonian lines, but as the soldiers opened wide gaps in their ranks the chariots were channel led through these.It was the last great charge by war chariots, in the last gasp of the old Mesopotamian orders which were not able to match the new. The battle was won by courage, as Alexander himself led his Companions in a daring assault on the Great King himself. Alexander knew where courage was to be found, and where it would be wanting.
For a short time there ensued a hand-to-hand fight; but when the Macedonian cavalry, commanded by Alexander himself, pressed on vigorously, thrusting themselves against the Persians and striking their faces with their spears, and when the Macedonian phalanx in dense array and bristling with long pikes had also made an attack upon them, all things together appeared full of terror to Darius, who had already long been in a state of fear, so that he was the first to turn and flee.
|Roman mosaic ca. 200 BC, copy of Hellenistic original ca. 300 BC|
Courage won the day, along with knowledge. Free men fight harder than slaves. Freedom is a greater motivator than the promise of gold, or power, or station. Alexander knew this, and conquered.
We see before us a similarly fearsome host, this October 1st. It too is vast, assembled of the hangers on of an ancient order, motivated by hope of gold, or power, or station in the existing Old Order. With us are only those who would have freedom as they've know it, those who do not choose to bow their heads to a self-described "elite" who would use the ancient power of of the hieratic state to keep themselves raised above us.
We're told that the battle is over, before it is well joined. We're told that the polls are done, complete, unanimous: Alexander is toast. We're told by a breathless media that an Ambassador dead by Darius' incompetence is not the story, but that Alexander's mean and thoughtless criticism of the Persian State Department's cowardly apology means that the Macedonians are finished. Finished, you hear?
After all, has not the Main Stream Media carefully leveled the ground of the battlefield, so that the Great King's chariots can reach maximum speed?
We look back from the modern day and wonder how Alexander could possibly have lost. He alone had realized that the Old Order had passed, and harnessed the New Order. In the twinkling of the eye he swept the Ancient Kingdoms before him. Seven years after marching his army out the gates of Pella he stood on the banks of the Indus river, weeping that there were no more worlds to conquer.
A decade hence we will look back on the election of 2012 through that same prism, wondering how anyone once thought that the Old Order with its Media lapdogs could have tried to command the tides of history to ebb. All of the Old Order's allies are weak, which is why their arguments are so laughably empty. The idea that people will vote for the Old Order, ignoring their own financial situations (down since Obama assumed office) or their prospects for future prosperity (down since Obama assumed office) or the prospects for their children's prosperity (crushed under a lack of jobs and student debts that cannot be discharged even in bankruptcy) is to laugh. The fact that we hear this from the Old Order media - best know for their mystified What's The Matter With Kansas? - tells you all you need to know about how the Progressive Order is out of gas.
Ignore the fearsome host arrayed before you, they are the last gasp of the Ancient World. Their chariots are an anachronism, and their motivation makes them weak. The host is an illusion, and will break and run.
This was a second success for the Persians, and Alexander saw that it was time for him to offset the discomfiture of his forces by his own intervention with the royal squadron and the rest of the elite horse guards, and rode hard against Dareius. The Persian king received their attack and fighting from a chariot hurled javelins against his opponents, and many supported him. As the kings approached each other, Alexander flung a javelin at Dareius and missed him, but struck the driver standing beside him and knocked him to the ground. A shout went up at this from the Persians around Dareius, and those at a greater distance thought that the king had fallen. They were the first to take to flight, and they were followed by those next to them, and steadily, little by little, the solid ranks of Dareius's guard disintegrated. As both flanks became closed, the king himself was alarmed and retreated. The flight thus became general.Looking back, History seems pre-determined. Ruling orders try to make it look that way at the time, no matter how weak their position. The moving finger even now writes; having writ, it prepares to move on.
The media shrieks its support of Obama, and its contempt of Romney. The chariots mass for their final charge. The Dinosaurs sniff a change on the breeze, and roar their defiance.