Monday, 4 August 2008

Nelson, Victory and War

I was in Portsmouth, yesterday, with the family, and spent a fascinating day at the historic dockyard, looking at HMS Warrior, HMS Victory and the Mary Rose.

Whilst on the deck of the Victory - standing on the very spot where Nelson caught his fatal musket ball - I was just telling my son (8) about the circumstances of the Battle of Trafalgar, Napoleon, and all that, when my daughter (6) piped up in a small but strangely adamant voice...
"Why do we have wars anyway?" she said, "everyone shooting at each other - What's the point of them?"

I thought for a moment about explaining the concept of balances of power and hegemonies, but then had to concede that her argument was actually much more convincing than mine.
1-nil to the innocence and optimism of youth.