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About Sullen

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    Drowned Man
  • Birthday 08/05/1993

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  1. Treacherous bannermen wouldn't have discussed how they could convince Robb the war was lost, they would have automatically discussed how they were going to betray him. They're not trying to jump ship, they're thinking of saving their, and everyone's, asses by making Robb bend the knee. House Frey is the House fielding the most out of any of Robb's allies if you believe most estimations of the makeup of Robb's forces. While "proud Northern Houses" like the Dustins, the Manderly's, or the Boltons specifically withhold some of their forces, House Frey pretty much goes "All In" in order to maximize the chances that Robb comes out of the War the victor, seeing as they have so much to gain from it. It's entirely self-serving on their part, but they remain the number one contributors to Robb's cause once he manages to buy their loyalty. His help is bought, yes, it still is the only thing allowing Robb and the Northern cause's survival. Without Frey being tempted, Tywin wins, and all of the big players are well aware of that. Again, it's self-serving on Walder's part, but it still a massive game changer that paints Frey as guilty for keeping the rebellion alive from King's Landing's PoV. Also, to say that he's the only one not to willingly give Robb aid is disingenuous. Many Northern lords weasel out of truly aiding Robb's cause, and Lord Umber pretty much has to be threatened with death after suggesting committing high treason before he comes on Robb's side. If they buy that the cause is truly lost, then yes, discussing how they can convince Robb to bend the knee is not treason or opportunistic swindler talk, it's common sense. For the record, I share the same view of Alester Florent for doing the same thing on Stannis's side, though Florent ended up acting without his King's approval. Also, that the forces are only Lannister forces is only true while Robert was still alive, by the time Robb gets there and Walder decides to side with him, it's perfectly clear who Joffrey and the Crown sides with in the whole conflict. Allowing declared rebels to cross his lands and then sending most of his army with them very much is treason. By siding with the Tullys against the King's family, he'd be betraying the King. Again, whose loyalty lies with whom can end up being very grey in feudal society, and Walder is simply pointing out that he'd rather not anger anyone powerful by declaring for one side above another. It's smart, and it's perfectly justifiable on his part. Not really, initially he has no intentions whatsoever to let Robb and the Northerners pass through, he's not initially trying to get the most out of the situation, but is trying to risk as little as possible. It takes Catelyn a full day of talks before she can even get him to consider declaring for a side. And again, as Walder points out, he has obligations to help Edmure, he has obligations to help the King. Why the quotation marks? Robb's betrayal can be explained by him being young, dumb, and emotional, but they're no less a betrayal. "Mercenary" only really describes Walder post-agreeing to serve Robb, before that he's entirely characterized by trying to stay as out as he can out of everything that poses the least bit a risk to him and his House, and until the betrayal, to say that he is willing to switch sides is untrue, the fact that he entered the deal as a third party makes Robb having to uphold his end of the bargain even more necessary, it doesn't lessen Robb's moral obligation whatsoever, hell, you could argue that Robb screws over ALL of his vassals by driving Frey away for nothing, he lost them their most precious allies and endangers all of them, simply because he couldn't keep it in his pants. They're not planning to leave, they're planning to convince Robb to surrender, that is not betrayal. Also, to say that Robb doesn't have to uphold his end of the bargain because the Freys think the cause is lost is blatant apologism. Considering how vehemently he defends his decision to marry Jayne (as well as the comment about Westerling blood being "purer" than Frey blood), it absolutely isn't because he understands how wrong what he did was. He's doing it because otherwise he's done for, this cannot be argued. Walder also meant to keep up his end of the bargain initially, not his fault that Robb willingly broke his end of it. If by "As long as it is to his benefit" you mean "As long as he gets his marriage with Robb and Arya out of it", I completely agree with you. Alas, that boat had sailed, with no fault of Walder's. Mate, I'm not the one with so little knowledge of the series' chronology as to claim that by the time Walder takes Robb's side, the Lannisters don't have the King's backing or who is too close-minded and stubborn as to ignore the notion that Walder swore an oath to the Crown as well as to House Tully. Keep your head hidden in the sand and ignoring Walder's obligations to the Crown, mate. He sits out and does the bare minimum as to not piss off anyone and uphold his oaths, he'd prefer not to have to take any risks at all, that's whole crux of his character. That's why he sits out of Robert's Rebellion rather than try to profit off of it, that's why he wanted to sit out of the whole Lannisters v. Tullys affair, that's why it was so hard for Catelyn to convince him to uncharacteristically take a risk on Robb.
  2. Stevron was a smart man. Pretty much the only character I found myself agreeing with without fault throughout the series. It's a shame that the poor man died, he would have made a great lord.
  3. I don't think Walder agreed to Catelyn's deal in bad faith to be honest. The Freys, after all, serve Robb better than any other House pre-Jeyne Westerling. Stevron, Walder's heir and House Frey's only hope for stability once the old man croaks dies serving Robb, Frey men are present at pretty much every single one of Robb's battles and die for him. Not only that, but by allowing Robb to pass, Walder becomes the sole reason that the Northern Rebellion is allowed to perdure more than a couple of months. House Frey committed high treason by siding with Robb, and painted a massive target on his back. Greed took over him and he went all in on the Northern gamble, which ended up screwing him over. Not to mention, even after the Tyrells flock to Joffrey's side, when Arya overhears the Freys talking in secret at Harrenhall, they do not speak of betrayal, but of convincing Robb that the cause is lost and that bending the knee would be the smart thing to do. Robb first entering the deal in good faith and then acting like an overly sentimental idiot doesn't make his betrayal any less of a betrayal, or any less of a slap in the face for a man who uncharacteristically risked it all on him. Leaving Robb after he makes it clear he can no longer fulfill his end of the bargain (by his own volition) is not betrayal on the Frey's part either, it's common sense. Robb's attempts to make amends can hardly be said to be in good faith either, he's not doing it because he feels sorry for going back on his word for the most superficial of reasons, he's doing so because his idiocy lost him the war if Frey doesn't agree to join back with him again. To add insult to injury, he specifically mentions that he needs the Frey men (who have already died for him in considerable numbers) for his suicidal assault on Moat Cailin against Victarion's forces, which are fully garrisoned at that point, seeing as the Kingsmoot has yet to be called. In any case, Frey was an assh*le for taking a side in the first place, he should have simply let the Stark and Baratheon-Lannister forces duke it out in the first place, he was right to assume early on that the whole thing was none of his business and that whatever side he chose he'd be an oathbreaker. The smart thing would have been to do nothing.
  4. I'm not sure the FN is the one that'll most profit from Macron's unpopularity. If anything, Melenchon's strong anti-Macron stance has set him as the default opposition in the eyes of most, even the right, and he's pretty much leading the fight against the Work Law Reform. If the toxicity of Hollande lingers and keeps the Socialistes down for another 5 years, I wouldn't be too surprised to see LFI potentially win the next elections.
  5. It's an interesting concept, but I don't really think it applies in my case to be honest. I won't try to deny that I didn't always have that specific point of view concerning Versailles and the guilt of Germany in general in World War One, more precisely I used to think that Versailles was too harsh/unfair on the German people and that the war was an inevitability for which you couldn't blame any particular nations, that view was likely tinted by my parents positive view of the German Empire, the Kaiser, and the subsequent Weimar Republic (both sides of the family fled Germany after WW2). It's at university that I really delved deeper into the subject and figured that most of what I was told about Germany before, during, and after the war was wrong, or at the very least, extremely white-washy. Not sure I'd consider myself, or the society/country I live in, especially war-prone as I live in Canada and find myself aligning best with the thoroughly pacifist New Democratic Party, I simply think that in the case of Versailles specifically, Germany was let go considerably too easily. It's not really about having an appetite for war, it's about an ambitious political entity like Germany being too large and far too powerful for the simple dissuading measures of Versailles to ever work in preventing another Great War while also staying fair to countries that were victims of a war of wanton aggression. Also, yeah, the role that Versailles had in propaganda was massive. It's definitively one of the aspects of the interwar period (and after) I want to read about more.
  6. I wouldn't call comparing the intentions of both sides relativism when it comes to figuring out what counts as harsh or not, especially when accompanied with comparisons with other relevant treaties of the past and of the time on both sides (treaty of Frankfurt, dissolution of A-H and the Ottomans, robbing and vassalisation of Romania). The fact that the Germans planned far worse is not the crux of my argument in defense of Versailles in any case.
  7. There were spoils, but these spoils are laughably small compared to what the Germans were planning, a quick look at the Septemberprogramm would show you that. And again, revanchisme was historically blown out of proportion. Moral relativism, again. Just because the Entente acted horribly in other parts of the world doesn't make the actions of Germany and AH any less terrible, just as the brutal way that the Aztecs ruthlessly slaughtered their neighbours did not make their conquest and genocide any less of an ignominy. You have to look at it within the context itself, and within the context, the Germans clearly come out of it the "bad guys".
  8. Revanchisme was and still is blown absurdly out of proportions by the Germans, it was never the major driving force in France and was pretty much inexistant in Britain.
  9. It's considerably more intellectually lazy to fall on a "everyone is to blame" excuse, and it's specifically what Germany tried to push as a narrative during the interwar. Sometimes, there are bad guys and good guys. Let us no pretend that the Nazis and the Japanese were not worse than the Allies in the Second World War for instance, the same is true of the First, let us not play moral relativists here. Russia and Serbia should have just let themselves be bullied then? France should have abandoned its ally in a defensive war? Belgium should have let its sovereignty revoked, and the British should have refused to honour their promise of upholding Belgian sovereignty? While it's true that there were some that were purely opportunistic factions on the Entente side (Japan and Italy come to mind), Germany and AH were the aggressors here, they're the ones who pushed for the War, and by reading the Septemberprogramm, it's quite clear that they were the ones with the obviously worse intentions here. The reparations had the same reputations throughout Germany, but again, I explained why the whole of Germany felt that way, and why it was completely dishonest on their part. During the same time period, people had it worse in both France and the UK, treating Germany as a victim is missing the point here. Again, I suggest reading recent economist and historian perspectives on it, Germany absolutely could've paid the reparations asked of them several times over, but dealt in bad faith. People act as if Germany was the only country that went through economic hardships in the interwar, forgetting that the 1929 Stock Market Crash affected everyone. As for Napoleon, the situations are not the same. Considerably more land was taken from the Second Empire than was taken from the German Empire, and Napoleon was not the aggressor in the Revolutionary Wars in any case. (Peninsular War notwithstanding, but I won't defend Napoleon's actions there)
  10. The fighting was pretty much all in Ally territory and colonial possessions. The Central Powers didn't pay much in reparations either, hell, the reparations France had to pay after the Franco-Prussian War (despite not being at fault) were heftier than all that Germany was supposed to pay after Versailles (but defaulted on). Also, the Central Powers were the aggressors, they created the mess, they should be held responsible for it.
  11. Under the threat of military and economic consequences, most likely yes. Germany was still a young nation, the Ottoman Empire and the AH Empire had a considerably longer history, and they stayed disunited, didn't they? 1. They were guilty for the War, no sense in leaving that out. 2. "Crippling reparations" is a myth born out of Nazi propaganda. You should read about it, it's really eye opening.
  12. Cheers mate. Thanks, as I said, it's a favourite subject of mine, took as many classes Versailles and the interwar period could fit in back in uni. It's really something that isn't talked about enough as far as I am concerned.
  13. They were actually allowed to keep a military, one that was 500k strong, which is nothing to scoff at. And a country with a population of 70 million, and the highest productivity output in all of Europe is certainly not "declawed", as Hitler showed us. I do agree that an unwillingness to enforce the terms of the Treaty on the part of all actors except France truly did make things worse, though. Enforcing the conditions of Versailles would have been easier to do with smaller individual nations though, which was why a good deal of French politicians pushed for the dismantling of the German Empire. It's considerably simpler to handle smaller entities than to handle a nation large and powerful enough to crush you both economically and in terms of manpower. The Treaty is pretty pointless if you're in no condition to guarantee that Germany would abide by it, as it happened.
  14. Way too soft. Simply compare the fate of Germany at Versailles to what they imposed to the Russians with Brest-Litovsk, or what Germany had planned for the Allies should they have won, or what happened with the other Central Powers, or hell, if you want to keep in mind the continuity of the Franco-Prussian War (which is extremely relevant), what they demanded of France after the war. A buttload of different circumstances made it really easy to paint Versailles as being too harsh on Germany, the numbers shown on paper for one. The economic crash and the occupation of the Ruhr is another one, but both are really the doings of the Weimar government which refused to raise taxes on the German people while keeping lofty social programs afloat and devaluated the Deutsche Mark in order the reduce the amount of reparations they had to pay considerably. Until the market crash, quality of life was better in Germany than in any of Allied countries. Add to that the fact the most Germans had no idea as to why they had lost the war, considering that the war never took to German territory, and you had a population ripe to believe that the deal was supposed to absolve of any guilt, and lead to what Wilson would have called a fair peace. While a great deal of the industry and infrastructure in France had been destroyed by the war, Germany was left mostly intact, which meant that in relative terms, Germany actually came out stronger than France did. The lack of fighting on German soil also contributed to the notion that Germany had not lost the war on the battlefield, but had rather been betrayed by its own population, the tragically famous Stab-in-the-back myth that led to the scapegoating of the Jews, and eventually the rise of antisemitism through Germany. (And you-know-what) Quickly put, Germany caused the war through the carte blanche, inflicted enormous amounts of damage to enemy and neutral actors both while staying mostly intact, surrendered as soon as things started turning sour, got a mere slap on the hand for the whole thing despite all of its allies being severely punished, crashed their economy in bad faith and then put all the blame on Versailles, the Allies, and whatever local scapegoat they could find. A good deal of the blame for the misconception that Versailles was too harsh on Germany can be attributed to Keynes, who argued highly in favour of lesser sanctions, while being the great economic authority of the epoch. (And he truly was incredible, wrong on this point though) If you want good reads about the subject, I'd suggest The Carthaginian Peace: the Consequences of Mr. Keynes by Etienne Mantoux, The Deluge: The Great War, America, and the Remaking of the Global Order by Adam Tooze, or The Myths of Reparations by Sally Marks (which is merely an article, so it's a light read). The academic perception of Versailles has greatly shifted over the decades, it's now seen as way too lenient, but the popular misconception about it being too harsh still remains deeply ubiquitous among the general population.
  15. You do realize that Versailles was far too lenient on Germany, right? The whole "Versailles was unfair to Germany" shtick was Nazi propaganda first, and became a narrative to ease Germany out of Russia's sphere of influence second. No war guilt clause my ass, the Germans were responsible for the whole goddamn mess. If they hadn't given carte blanche to Austria, the invasion of Serbia wouldn't have happened, or at least wouldn't have included the whole damned world. Not to mention the repeated treaty violations and crimes against humanity that would plague German military history during the whole goddamn Great War. They're the ones who caused the War, and most of the damage caused by the War was on French and Belgian soil. Germany was treated far too kindly, it should have gone the way of Austria-Hungary and the Ottoman Empire... complete dissolution was the solution. The final deal was sabotaged by differing interests from different actors. Wilson was an idealist that wanted his own American German population to be content, and wanted a strong trading partner in Germany, hence the lenience, and the British, Napoleon still fresh on their mind, were not willing to let France be the only continental superpower. Naivete at its finest, and an unwillingness to listen to the French voice of reason, led to an intact Germany which felt slighted by the outcome of the war. Versailles should have declawed and defanged the tiger that was the German Empire, instead they simply yanked its tail and angered it more. As Ferdinand Foch famously put it, the Treaty of Versailles was not a peace deal, it was an armistice of twenty years. Thank you for injecting some sanity into this discussion.