The blogs of war

Today’s Wall Street Journal carries a good article by Mike Spector (available to nonsubscribers) on the phenomenon of milblogs: “Cry bias, and let slip the blogs of war.” It;s not a particulary good article, but it has a few links and is worth a look. The headline of course alludes to Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar. one of Shakespeare’s great plays about politics. It is a play with many frequently quoted lines that have become part of our everyday speech, such as “it’s Greek to me.” The “dogs of war” reference occurs in Antony’s soliloquy over the body of the assassinated Caesar in the beginning of Act III, after Antony’s meeting with Caesar’s assassins:

O, pardon me, thou bleeding piece of earth,
That I am meek and gentle with these butchers!
Thou art the ruins of the noblest man
That ever lived in the tide of times.
Woe to the hand that shed this costly blood!
Over thy wounds now do I prophesy,–
Which, like dumb mouths, do ope their ruby lips,
To beg the voice and utterance of my tongue–
A curse shall light upon the limbs of men;
Domestic fury and fierce civil strife
Shall cumber all the parts of Italy;
Blood and destruction shall be so in use
And dreadful objects so familiar
That mothers shall but smile when they behold
Their infants quarter’d with the hands of war;
All pity choked with custom of fell deeds:
And Caesar’s spirit, ranging for revenge,
With Ate by his side come hot from hell,
Shall in these confines with a monarch’s voice
Cry ‘Havoc,’ and let slip the dogs of war;
That this foul deed shall smell above the earth
With carrion men, groaning for burial.

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