In the last stanza of “The Battle of Blenheim,” Robert Southey writes:
“But what good came of it at last?” Quoth little Peterkin.
“Why, that I cannot tell,” said he; “But ’twas a famous victory.”
What did it really matter? The poet was asking of the triumph of the Duke of Marlborough — “Who this great fight did win.”
What brings back this poem about the transience of glory and folly of war — during this week’s struggle over whose flag will fly over Crimea — is a wall chart that just arrived from the UN.
“World Population 2012″ projects the population growth, or decline, of every country and continent, between now and 2050.
Most deeply involved in Crimea’s crisis are Russia and Ukraine. Yet, looking at the UN numbers, there seems an element of absurdity in this confrontation that could lead to a shooting war.
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