Posted by: Mark Nielsen | November 24, 2007

Walker Percy: “Not exactly our best war.”

The following is a humorous but scarily prescient excerpt from Walker Percy’s great 1971 novel “Love In the Ruins”. (Subtitle: The Adventures of a Bad Catholic at a Time Near the End of the World)

Any brief comments I will make are bracketed, next to his references, to show what his fictional scenario makes me think of in our present, extremely NON-FICTIONAL political climate.

“The war in Ecuador has been going on for fifteen years and has divided the country further. Not exactly our best war. [First– out of all the banana republics to choose from– Percy didn’t correctly pick Nicaragua or Venezuela as the first to go communist. But Ecuador was close. Second, the obvious Iraq war connection makes me worry we’ll be in there for 15+ years.] The U.S.A. sided with South Ecuador, which is largely Christian, believing in God and the sacredness of the individual, etcetera etcetera. The only trouble is that South Ecuador is owned by ninety eight Catholic families with Swiss bank accounts [the Saudi aristocracy], is governed by a general [Pakistan], and so is not what you would call an ideal democracy. North Ecuador, on the other hand, which many U.S. liberals support, is Maoist-Communist [North Korea] and has so far murdered two hundred thousand civilians, including liberals, who did not welcome Communism with open arms. [China in Tibet, in Tiananmen Square, and in various rural locales where they still pursue quietly murderous or corrupt policies in order to expand their empire]. Not exactly our best war, and now in its sisxteenth year.”


  1. “It’s deja vu all over again.”

    I believe this quotation has been attributed to Yogi Berra. Argh.

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