Quite a Quote

     The principal chief’s true intentions would never be known, because Jackson did not test them. Although the letter was addressed to Jackson, there is no record that he answered it personally. Instead a disapproving note came from an aide, and the president maintained his course. A partial solution would not satisfy the Georgians, and according to Jackson it was the Georgians alone with whom Ross must come to terms. Georgia, not Jackson, was destroying the Cherokee Nation; the president was merely standing aside to let it happen. So it was with the national economy—the Bank of the United States, not Jackson, was wrecking it. So it had been twenty years earlier when his soldiers were preparing to execute John Wood. “Between [the] law & its offender,” he had written then, “the commanding General ought not to be expected to interpose.”

Inskeep, Steve. Jacksonland. New York: Penguin Books, 2016.

Quite a Quote

By remaining cool and reasonable Bolívar retained his panoply of power. At the same time he reminded Santander of his place in the hierarchy of the revolution: ‘It is an honour that two of my friends and assistants have emerged as two prodigies…. I am the man of difficulties, you are the man of law, and Sucre is the man of war.’ The meaning was clear: I am supreme, the one who solves the great problems. I command, you administer.

Lynch, John. Simón Bolívar: A Life. New Haven: Yale University Press, 2007.

Quite a Quote

Project Bedbug, sponsored by the Limited War Laboratory (LWL) in Maryland, only just failed to take off. This involved the tactical use of bedbugs (or “man-seeking anthropods,” as LWL called them) to warn infantryman of approaching VC guerrillas. William Beecher of the New York Times, who visited LWL, described the project as follows: Since bedbugs “let out a yowl of excitement when they sense the presence of food, specifically including human flesh, the lab created a bedbug carrier fitted with a sound amplification device…. when a bug-bearing patrol approached an enemy ambush, the members of the patrol would be forewarned by the happy cries of the animals upon sensing a meal up ahead.” The project collapsed when it was discovered that the bedbugs couldn’t control their excitement. They became so deliriously happy at just being carried about by GIs that they were too busy “swooning with delight” to warn their patrons of any approaching Communist ambush.

Mangold, Tom, and John Penycate. The Tunnels of Cu Chi. New York: Presidio Books, 2005.


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Zoë Tersche

Freelance writing focusing on internet freedoms and surveillance along with sexuality and gender in media and tech.