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Coup D'Etat (orig. pub. 1969)

by Edward Luttwak

Ah, if only...
"The security apparatus of the modern state, with its professional personnel, with its diversified means of transport and communications, and with its extensive sources of information, cannot be defeated by civilian agitation, however intense and prolonged. Any attempt on the part of civilians to use direct violence with improvised means will always be neutralized by the efficiency of modern automatic weapons; a general strike, on the other hand, can temporarily swamp the system, but cannot permanently damage it, since in a modern economic setting, the civilians will run out of food and fuel well before the military, the police, and allied organizations. The modern state is therefore practically invulnerable to a direct assault. Two alternatives remain: guerrilla warfare and the coup d'etat." -- Coup D'Etat

"We must develop branches of the party in which the whole of individual life will be reflected. Each activity and each need of the individual will thereby be regulated by the party as the representative of the general good. There will be no license, no free space, in which the individual belongs to himself. This is Socialism--not such trifles as the private possession of the means of production. Of what importance is that if I range men firmly within a discipline they cannot escape? Let them then own land or factories as much as they please. The decisive factor is that the State, through the party, is supreme over them, whether they are owners or workers. All that, you see, is unessential. Our Socialism goes far deeper.... It gives us also a special, secret pleasure to see how the people about us are unaware of what is really happening to them. They gaze fascinated at one or two familiar superficialities, such as possessions and income and rank and other outworn conceptions. As long as these are kept intact, they are quite satisfied. But in the meantime they have entered a new relation; a powerful social force has caught them up. They themselves are changed. What are ownership and income to that? Why need we to trouble to socialize banks and factories? We socialize human beings." -- A certain 20th-century European leader (initials A.H.)

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