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tv   [untitled]  CSPAN  June 27, 2009 12:30pm-1:00pm EDT

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>> they didn't have to be motorized. they came with horses and bell rings, which they treated as guilty by association. in 1871 at prosecuting attorney said, and paris everyone was guilty. if you were poor and still there you were guilty. there's a point that i'm making here about the demons of the 20th century, you can see them in the commune already and you can see them in the state reaction to emile henry. but what i had a blast part of the book which i took out because it was a bit over the top, well, not really. but which i talk about the smirking administration, just the last administration and their attitude towards torture and the horrible scenes on iraq and pay contractors gunning down
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civilians. there are refrains that one can find to emile henry. somebody figure out, i think it was a very political science at ucla, or somebody in a book that he did that for every one person killed by terrorists. emile henry was a really bad guy. he was a terrorist. but 270 were killed by states. it was easy to understand emile henry's hatred. we can think of these people, you could do, dynamite became such an obsession you could do the dynamite pocock literally. you could sing about getting it to the bourgeois. but a lot of that was frivolous, but there was some real hard core attackers or terrorists in that group.
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but what my friend marty miller at duke once called between the state and tears, they need each other and states need terrace in order to accomplish its horrific crimes against humanity. and that is another of the lessons of the story of emile henry and his brief .1 and a half years on earth. it was fun to follow him around and repeat what i said before. it was bizarre that he would be in a restaurant that he blew up. but the façades are still all there. they are still there. when you walk out of the last place when he lived, you know, the 1894 bombing to walk out and you can see. if you can imagine that happy day before the awful part that wasn't there. they buried the rough livers of the generals and you could see
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notre dame and you could see other things that was only five years old and. he was bourgeois. in sort of threadbare clothes kind of like yours truly. he could hate. what i wanted to do was understand his hate and to drop several lessons for now and for the future. who knows. anyway, i'm happy to try to answer any questions you might have. [applause] >> i'm curious about what your sources were for understanding the inner life of the man. you mentioned some letters to his mother, the trial. and also where do you find these things? >> well, i worked essentially a year with the police, and the
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playstation. and so you have the sort of weird thing when you want a coffee you get a coffee and you are on one of the tae kwon do match where they are flipping themselves rather. and then you go down with a briefcase and you might be cheered because you would get pickpocketed. he did, he wrote letters. also because he had guards around the clock, the place where he first was. and then where murray and without another spent there last night. the guards were on 12 hour shifts and they took notes on everything he said. and then there was his girlfriend. it was a most modern moment because the girlfriend was so infatuated with the press, and of course the press has a huge role in all this. this is a big, big colorful press. 1 million copies of a couple of
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them done. and they communicate the fear, they helped stoke up the fear of anarchist and also help them communicate with each other. and so you have all of these accounts of what was going on in the jail. and so i was able to be pretty well-informed about an. i read his father's poems which were put to music. i went everywhere he was and i tried to put myself in his place. and he wrote these poems to this woman, his would-be girlfriend. and went word comes, and his mom learns that he has been executed, she is out there giving interviews to the press. so happy to do so. yes, he loved me and why wouldn't he. you know, it was actually just sickening. but he wrote these poems that were influenced by spiritism and all sorts of stuff, i don't know anything about poetry but i try to analyze what he said.
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but i know a lot about emile henry. i followed him around london even. you know, in those neighborhoods. his inner soul, i can't get into that but i could understand him. i do know him. i know that guy. i guess those of us who grew up in the 1970s, we hated like that. during the vietnam war, absolutely. absolutely. yes. >> this is also a research question. some of the transcript from the secret police, did you have access to the? does france have something simmer to a freedom of information act? >> i had access to everything. 50 euros rule, archival. it's 100 years for censorship. [inaudible] >> he was really good.
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he really rocks. and you don't just believe everything they write. my late friend richard cobb said the police are writing what they want their superiors to hear so you have to kind of crosscheck everything. and another one went to london. i had british police also. i worked out there. yes, it's all there. it's all there. gets harder in modern period, but now the vichy syndrome now we can find out about collaboration and vichy was before you couldn't because of these types of laws. >> i was wondering if you look into sort of if there was any different reaction his actions as to more normal and arcus action like shooting mccammon or something? >> the debate isn't who you shoot but if you shoot anyone. they said we will organize, we will grow in strength or we will
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be numerous. those people are influenced. i believe a single spark, that's what the deed was. it will ignite this revolution. it wasn't her you were going to shoot but if you're going to shoot anybody at all. a very major major figure, a noble geographer prints, he came up along with the term with another man who became a socialist. and then he ended up in the bin actually, in an asylum. they created the term propaganda by the deed. they led police all over the place. he hated marx. marx hated him. his idea was it would be the peasants, the russian president. falls following, false sars. but the rebellion in the 18th century would take a single czar
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in 1919 in ukraine, that it would be the rural people who would rise up, slaughter their lords. but these guys believe that if enough of these guys kill people, that pretty soon other people would get the idea and kill others and then one day people would say why do we have capitalism, why do we have the state? why do we have this duo? history, in 1500, there are 1500 states about. some note bigger than the archbishop's gardens. in 1871 and in 1914 there was about 37, and there. so the consolidation of state powers. and a cardiff, not violent anarchism but there was a lot of response to this. i'm not an anarchist. my michigan maes days inn bluejays. but it was a logical response because day, you know, the state
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was protecting these people and the third republic was full of corruption. the scandal were the sudden loss of president of france was involved. kind of like american politics. in many ways and so it was so corrupt that anarchism for many people, and there weren't many as nearly anarchist in france as other places. it was primarily a world phenomenon. most anarchists in france were non-terrorist. for the majority were in other places. or there were italian, and arcus and italy. >> so after this act, like in the united states there were several incidents when the united states used it as an
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excuse to crack down on civilians. did the french government react like this? >> yes, like legislation. they arrested anyone who moved. if they were and arcus or violent anarchy is, which very few were violent and arcus. yeah, they took that as an excuse. if you're not absolutely for us, then you're against us. we have seen government in this country, you know, how many of them haven't been like that? richard nixon in 1967, he said opposition to the war is the greatest thing working against the successful victory india not. some of us, there are a few of us here t old enough to remembe. >> the picture that he would see after this revolution of what, you know, the country would look like? >> it's a great question. he didn't really.
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they are better at how they're going to get there than what they are going to do afterward. but i can tell you his younger brother, you know, who cried and cried when emile henry was executed, he ended up having -- he sold eggs and butter and cheese. and then in 1968 who tried to set up an anarchist commune in northeastern france rider the belgian border, but in 1968 you can still find these old people. present a hated each other's backs and the whole thing fell apart. they are better at how to get from here to there than what's going to happen. the one who really describe what's going to be like afterward is the earth two and arcus, and he wrote properties that in 1841. shot across the bow. he didn't mean all property was
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deft. he was impressed by the small property owners. anyway, he describes that there will be people kind of getting together ending in a federalist way, and associates way and exchanging product. people like them were seemed to get along. he goes over the top little bit. because when he talks about the red cross and people getting together on that and then he goes through these passages where he says animals get along too without the state. so maybe human beings can as well. he was best at saying what the world was going to be like afterward. he said memorably that the distraction is also a creative passion. destruction is also a creative
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passion. you have to level, destroy, and in this new brave world will drop spontaneously because people are good. he was pacing around outside hating voltaire and vice versa. there is something, the primitive is good and that people are good. people are not born under original sin. they were down on the idea of original sin highly. and if you leave them alone, the change is provided by the state but you have to go back and begin with that. >> where does the anarchy is to see himself and his new world? he blows up the old world. what emerges out of those ashes. what does he see himself as? he's basically out of a job no. >> he's happy because he can exchange things.
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i know what he read in prison. he was an amazing guy. in many ways he could exchange is a literary for eggs and butter. that said he sees himself afterward. but henry had no illusions about living through this. but it was sort of an indirect suicide. that's how they view themselves. he was 21 when he put his head through the little window. and so he didn't really have a lot of time to write about what the plant was going to be after his head had been separated from the rest of his body and placed between his legs, as they carted him off for the autopsy that his mother did not want. of course the autopsy concluded because his head had been decapitated from his body. [laughter] >> i mean, it sounds like he was really old for idealist, but it
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does make me wonder had he lived longer and really, you know, experienced human nature in more forms, if he would have changed his thinking. >> i can't say. his father's death hung over him. i don't really know. what if someone else had the hots for him? maybe not, but i don't know. that i can't say. i tried to find out what happened to his mother by the way, but i don't know. i don't know. i just the other day i was working on something else in pairs and a week before last i just sent out the name of his doctor. i tried to have him declared clinically insane so he wouldn't be executed. you have to piece these things together. it's kind of mosaic but i can't say. i really don't know. other questions?
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, and have a of wine with us. [applause] >> john merriman is the author of numerous books including a history of modern europe. is currently a history professor at keio university. for more information about the author, visit >> today tips on how to deal with the current economic crisis from pat robertson.
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>> this summer book tv is asking what are you reading? >> i'm the congressman from the 11th congressional district of virginia and i'm here to talk about books. i myself am a very avid reader. i read on average a book a week, sometimes to. and most of my consumption is history and biography. i have a stack of books on one side of the bed that i have read in the last year, and i've got another stack on the other side of the bed that is to be read in the coming year. i particularly am fond of american history and have read a
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number of biographies last year. a very wonderful book by joseph wheeler, the last crusade. john quincy adams career here in the house of representatives. historians i think, very few historians have ever written about that period exclusively in john quincy adams career. he spent 17 years here in the house of representatives after having served as president and had a very distinguished career. he was an out spoken proponent of slavery, and in many ways was somebody who foresaw of the disunion that was going to occur. and he was just a stallworth on the subject. and was a fierce defender of the constitution, american rights. and of course defended the black slaves who were in the famous
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incident of the onstar. john quincy adams ackley took that case to the supreme court and failed where no one thought he could. anyway, it's a fascinating story of john quincy adams, his time postpresidential. and i think it's one of the few books ever written about that period of time. in his life. a book i just finished reading when i got here to the house is the house for storage book about, called the house, which is a short history of the house of representatives itself which is a great institution. there are lots of interesting characters and a course of great history swirling around us. a wonderful read for those of us who have come to congress. i went through a bout of reading about ancient rome, so i read anthony everett's two books, cicero and the gases.
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i custis. and julius caesar which was so good. a novel on julius caesar which is also a great read. and then i couldn't get enough of ancient rome so i read every novel in every short story steven sailer has done. he created this fictional character but the history behind it is all accurate. it's sort of an mystery of ancient rome during that time. so i've had a lot of fun reading about history and even going to fiction to further inform me about that great time period in terms of ancient rome. i think in this time of barack obama, one must read team of
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rivals which is a great story about abraham lincoln not only bested his rivals, but then had the intestinal fortitude to bring all those rivals into his cabinet, each of whom thought he was smarter and each of whom thought he should be in that swivel chair, not abraham lincoln. it's a great story and it really illuminates a lot on american history. another book i read in the last year or so, i've read a number of military histories. the coldest winter, which is a wonderful story published posthumously by a great writer on the korean war. not a lot of single volumes on that period of american history and really well, well done. rick atkinson has published the first of two books on the second
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world war, and specifically the first log is on the american involvement in north africa and the second is on the italian campaign which was a bloody, bloody affair. and doesn't get a lot of attention in history, and obviously deserves a lot more. just a luminescent writer. a wonderful, wonderful piece of history and a great, great writing. but a book i would recommend for people who want to understand what went wrong in iraq, is a book called the asko. he has since written another one which i haven't read yet. but fiasco is a great book in terms of peeling away what happened in iraq. you know, and essentially the united states made some very critical mistakes, and even now. the first was the inadequacy of the troops that went into iraq,
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which meant that while we could topple a regime, we could not restore law and order. and so when mass looting occurred, american troops all too often found themselves standing on the sidelines having to watch it because it wasn't their mission and we didn't have enough troops to do much about it. it significantly eroded iraqi public, and it's in who we were and what we were about. then secondly paul bremer who was then sort of the guy in charge, put in charge by both rumsfeld and bush, overturned some decisions of the american military had been trying to make in order to restore law and order, and to essentially try to rebuild some kind of structure. the first was his decision to disband the iraqi military, which had been at odds with what our own military was trying to do. by doing that, of course, he essentially created a couple
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hundred thousand unemployed families whose main source of income was an armed military, trained military man. and those fueling sympathy for the insurgency and providing a source of weapons. and a third great mistake was the decision that to ban all members of the baathist party which had been dominant party in iraq since the time of saddam hussein, from serving in the new government. well, it might be understandable that you want the senior members of the baathist party precluded, but to go down to low-level bureaucrats who had no real choice, if they wanted to advance they have to be member of the baptist party. to ban them also, again, just created hundreds of thousands of unemployed folks who know also were very hostile to the united
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states and were sympathetic to the insurgency. those with three big problems, those three bad decisions on the part of the previous administration, and specifically paul bremmer, really help shape what was then going to happen. and of course now we are in the longest military engagement in our history. and although things have finally started to show some improvement on the ground, when you read this book, fiasco, you realize that we made some different decisions, frankly, the outcomes might have been much more positive and we might not have lost as many american lives. iraq may not have lost as many iraqi lives in the ensuing seven or eight years. >> to see more summer reading list and other program information, visit our website at
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>> richard brookhiser wrote his first article for the new republic at the age of 14. and was hired as the magazine senior editor at 23. he began to his relationship with a conservative magazine's founder, william f. buckley, jr., who at one time deemed mr. brookhiser his successor, only later to change his mind. the manhattan institute sponsored this event, and the harvard club in new york city hosted it is 15 minutes. >> this is the first time i have given a booktalk where half the people in the room are in the index. [laughter] >> you all look at the index. [laughter] >> jack, you did. you really did. let me begin at the beginning.
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i'm not bill buckley, but i am writing for him. i grew up in new york, a suburb of rochester, a midsize city with my parents and my older brother, bob. in the fall of 1969, i was a freshman in the local public high school i didn't know anybody who went to private ones. my brother was a junior at yale. every weekend of the school year since he had gone away to college, i wrote him on a small, black metal typewriter that had belonged to mom. a letter reversing the events of the week. basketball games, school plays, little triumphs, tiny disasters, bulletins of adolescents dramatize an ionized. when we, the news barged into this home theater.


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