Friday, 8 August 2014


Other people have a nationality. The Irish and the Jews have a psychosis - Brendan Behan

I was court-martialled in my absence, and sentenced to death in my absence, so I said they could shoot me in my absence - Brendan Behan

A Symbiote bonding with another life form
Publication information
PublisherMarvel Comics
First appearanceBlack CostumeThe Amazing Spider-Man #252 , The Spectacular Spider-Man #90, and Marvel Team-Up #141SymbioteThe Amazing Spider-Man #258 (May 1984)
Created byJim ShooterMike Zeck
Notable membersVenom
Inherent abilitiesSymbiosis with a host provides superhuman strength, speed, agility, and endurance; gains characteristics of host; increases original powers of hosts

Divide and Rule

In politics, divide and rule, derives from the Greek :διαίρει καὶ βασίλευε, diaírei kaì basíleue, describing gaining and maintaining power by breaking up concentrations of power into smaller pieces that individually can be managed and have less power than the the strategist. The strategy breaks up existing power structures and prevents smaller power groups from alliances linking up.

The saying divide et impera or divide ut regnes were utilised by the Roman Emperor Caesar and the French Emperor Napoleon. The example of Gabinius exists, splitting the Jewish nation into five conventions, reported by Flavius Josephus in Book I, 169-170 of The Wars of the Jews or De bello Judaico. This is also how the British conquered Ireland initially and still uses political agents, within the Irish republican leadership, who aside from spying, sow suspicion and division, Strabo also reports in Geography, 8.7.3 that theAchaean League was gradually dissolved under the Roman possession of the whole of Macedonia, owing to them not dealing with several states in the same way, but wishing to preserve some and destroy others.

In modern times, Traiano Boccalini cites "divide et impera" in La bilancia politica, 1,136 and 2,225 as a common principle in politics. The use of this technique is meant to empower the sovereign to control subjects, populations, or factions of different interests, who collectively might be able to oppose his rule. Machiavelli identified a similar application in military strategy, advising in Book VI ,of The Art of War (Dell'arte della guerra), that a Captain, should attempt, with every art, to divide the forces of the enemy, either by making him suspicious of his men in whom he trusted, or by giving him cause, that he has to separate his forces, and because of this, become weaker.

The strategy of division and rule has been attributed to sovereigns ranging from Louis XI to the Habsburgs. Edward Coke denounces it in Chapter I of the Fourth Part of the Institutes, reporting that when it was demanded by the Lords and Commons what might be a principal motive for them to have good success in Parliament, it was answered: "Eritis insuperabiles, si fueritis inseparabiles. Explosum est illud diverbium: Divide, & impera, cum radix & vertex imperii in obedientium consensus rata sunt." You would be insuperable if you were inseparable. This proverb, Divide and Rule, has been rejected, since the root and the summit of authority are confirmed by the consent of the subjects. On the other hand, in a minor variation, Sir Francis Bacon wrote the phrase "separa et impera" in a letter to James Iof 15 February 1615. James Madison made this recommendation in a letter to Thomas Jefferson of 24 October 1787, which summarized the thesis of The Federalist #10:"Divide et impera, the reprobated axiom of tyranny, is under certain (some) qualifications, the only policy, by which a republic can be administered on just principles." In Perpetual Peace: A Philosophical Sketch by Immanuel Kant (1795), Appendix one, Divide et imperais the third of three political maxims, the others being Fac et excusa :Act now, and make excuses later and Si fecisti, nega : when you commit a crime, deny it.

Elements of this technique involve:

creating or encouraging divisions among the 

subjects to prevent alliances that could challenge the sovereign

aiding and promoting those who are willing to cooperate with the sovereign

fostering distrust and enmity between local rulers

encouraging meaningless expenditures that reduce the capability for political and military spending

Historically, this strategy was used in many different ways by empires seeking to expand their territories.The Occupied Territories of Palestine and Ireland from the former British Empire know all about that. For those who are paying attention we can draw the same lessons of the problem and of the solution from this, primarily, unity and solidarity, despite the many agents of division inserted.
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