Raiders of a lost cause?

January 17th, 1968. 11pm. Black winter night has descended on the peninsula. Thirty-one commandos sneak undetected across the DMZ and into South Korea. Thirty-one of the DPRK’s finest who had been training two years with a monomaniacal fervor for one purpose. Converge on the South’s presidential Blue House. Assassinate Park Chung-hee. Or be martyred trying.

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Power of the word

The Spartans were known for their legendary, concise, laconic (named after the region of which Sparta was part) wit. The adage that “less is more” never applied anywhere more-or-less than it does with the Spartan rejoinder. The verbal volley as decapitating as their legendary martial spirit. Plutarch, in On Talkativeness, in Moralia, recounts a story of Philip II, the shrewd, political, powerful king of Macedon. Sending a message to the Spartans, he wrote (depending on the translation): “If once I enter into your territories, I will destroy ye all, never to rise again”. The Spartans’ reply was a word: If.

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