Francis Porretto:

Kings used to lead their own armies. They used to lead the cavalry’s charge. For a king to send an army to war and remain behind to warm his throne was simply not done. Those that tried it lost their thrones, and some lost their heads — to their own people. It was a useful check on political and military rashness. It hasn’t been that way for a long time. Today armies go into the field exclusively at the orders of politicians who remain at home. And politicians are bred to believe that reality is entirely plastic to their wills.

On the strength of this one quote, I bought the book.

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Jonathan · May 30, 2023 at 12:19 pm

Personal responsibility and direct leadership.
The Bible has a story about exactly this problem, for good reason.

It’s a companion problem that our leaders are no longer veterans, so they don’t have any idea what it is like out there (and unfortunately, many don’t care either).

It's just Boris · May 30, 2023 at 12:27 pm

Which book? “On Broken Wings” or …?


    Divemedic · May 30, 2023 at 12:33 pm

    That’s the one.

      Mike Hendrix · May 30, 2023 at 11:29 pm

      Fran’s a great writer, DM, I assure you you won’t be sorry you bought it. Being a good friend of mine, he was gracious enough to send me a bunch of his stuff a good while back, of which I read the all, but FAST. Real page-turners for sure, in the grand old Heinleinian tradition.

EN2 SS · May 30, 2023 at 12:38 pm

Isn’t it against the elites rules to actually attack another leader? Everyone is supposed to kill off as many peons as possible, until someone gives up? But DO NOT INVOLVE THE LEADERS in the violence?

    Divemedic · May 30, 2023 at 12:47 pm

    It’s the same thing that the British used to claim. “Officers are gentlemen, and they are the only thing holding the rabble of enlisted troops back, keeping them from committing atrocities. Therefore, it is against the rules to shoot at officers.”
    The colonists had different ideas, of course.

      Grumpy51 · May 30, 2023 at 4:17 pm

      I wonder if it was an officer who came up with that rule?? /sarc

JNorth · May 30, 2023 at 2:01 pm

With very few exceptions Kings haven’t led armies since before Rome. That’s kind of why King Richard was Richard the Lion Hearted. It’s not an indication of any of todays issues.

JimmyPx · May 30, 2023 at 2:57 pm

This happened even 100 years ago. Read about King Albert I of Belgium who personally led his men in WWI from the front ! When they were forced to retreat and their backs were against the sea, he led them personally for 4 years ! His wife the Queen was at the front with him working as a nurse and he had his oldest teenage son enlist as a private and fight.

    Divemedic · May 30, 2023 at 3:43 pm

    At least the Royal family of the UK sends its sons to fight. They get props for that.

      JL · May 30, 2023 at 5:27 pm

      Point of order.

      I can’t for the life of me recall a sovereign or a member of the royal family that served in a frontline fighting unit (during wartime or otherwise), such as the Paras, Royal Marines, Green Jackets, or even non infantry combat units like the Royal Artillery or Royal Engineers. Usually they serve as officers in the rear echelon in the Royal Navy or Royal Airforce. They are NEVER in the British Army except ceremonially and are absolutely never in a frontline combat role. Always REMFs.

      Closest exception to that was Harry, when he was flying combat missions in Helmand Province, and they nixed that fairly early on. He didn’t even get to finish his tour.

liberty · May 30, 2023 at 3:41 pm

It’s a good book. I ended up reading the entire series.

Marty Cornwallis · May 30, 2023 at 5:45 pm

They end up like King Ludwig II if they don’t lead in battle, spending the royal fortune and building a fairy tale in real life although it probably is the best castle ever in Bavaria.

O/T-Newz is on about Uke drones in Moscow and China buzzes recon plane within 500 feet of the nose.
Grab your popcorn!

Skyler the Weird · June 1, 2023 at 2:04 pm

King David stayed home from the front and got in all kinds of trouble seeing a Lieutenants wife bathing on the roof.

King Gustavus Adolphus of Sweden lead the Cavalry charge at Lützen and was shot off his horse. His death lead the Swedes in righteous anger to defeat the Imperial Army but the face of world history was probably altered by his death.

There is our own civil war where Generals lead from the front over one hundred were killed in action or died of their wounds including Theater Commander General A.S. Johnston CSA at Shiloh.

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