Author Topic: The Fate of Empires: Lessons From History  (Read 678 times)

Offline pr126

The Fate of Empires: Lessons From History
« on: February 08, 2019, 03:38:29 AM »
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Offline Plu

Re: The Fate of Empires: Lessons From History
« Reply #1 on: February 08, 2019, 05:44:36 AM »
So... are there any interesting observations to add to this, or are we just sharing random stuff from Youtube? :)
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Offline Baruch

Re: The Fate of Empires: Lessons From History
« Reply #2 on: February 08, 2019, 07:08:35 AM »
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So... are there any interesting observations to add to this, or are we just sharing random stuff from Youtube? :)

Pr126 frequently fails to comment, leaving us clueless.  I can comment.  I learn from history.  Other people, not so much.  On the other hand, the issues are so big, there isn't a lot you can do about anything, anyway.
« Last Edit: February 08, 2019, 07:23:06 AM by Baruch »
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luu shalmaata luu balt’aata
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Offline pr126

Re: The Fate of Empires: Lessons From History
« Reply #3 on: February 08, 2019, 08:54:56 AM »
If after watching the video, the viewer is still clueless as what the hell was this all about, then any explanation on the content will not help.

Usually, the title of the video should be enough indication for most people.
So they can decide to watch it or move on.

« Last Edit: February 08, 2019, 09:26:06 AM by pr126 »
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Offline Plu

Re: The Fate of Empires: Lessons From History
« Reply #4 on: February 08, 2019, 10:41:02 AM »
The video itself is pretty obvious and not exactly presenting anything extraordinary, so I was more wondering what brought you to share it here.
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Offline Shiranu

Re: The Fate of Empires: Lessons From History
« Reply #5 on: February 08, 2019, 05:16:24 PM »
Again... actually an interesting video, and I am glad you are sharing it.

That said, the opening premise, that Empires (on average) have a life of 200 years is just objectively wrong, and the author he quotes uses dates that I, frankly, have no idea where he got them from. It's interesting that the video starts off about talking how history is used to promote a political agenda, and then he literally turns around and uses historically inaccurate dates to do exactly that.
 
Disclaimer: The following is mostly just dates and why I chose them for the life spans of Empires. If you want the tl;dr version, this is the short of it...

Roman Empire - At least 260 B.C. (Punic Wars) to 1400s (Fall of the Eastern Roman Empire)
Arabic Caliphates - 632 (Rashidun) to 1200s (Abbasids)
Ottoman Empire - At least 1400s (Conquest of Constantinople) to 1922 (Dissolved after WW1). Arguably a continuation of the Caliphates, so could be also 632 to 1922.
Spanish Empire - 1516 (Hapsburg foundations) to at least 1826 (loss of most of Latin America)
Portuguese Empire - 1415 (African Holdings) to 1999 (surrender of Macau to China)
Imperial China - Either can do the Dynasties, which all had hundreds of years of history each, or consider Imperial Rule being from at least the Shang (1600 B.C.) to the Qing (1922 A.D.)
Hellenic Age - Around 400-500 years of Greek Culture Empire.

Now the historical explanations, for anyone interested why I chose those dates...

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

A. He claims the Roman Empire lasted from 27 B.C. to 180 A.D. ... this is just outright false. The Roman Republic, which was by all means an Empire (an Empire does not require Imperial/Monarchical rule, though generally it was since this was the predominate form of government for most of history) began to expand around 500 B.C. and didn't truly fall until around 1400 A.D. when the Byzantine Empire (who called themselves the Roman Empire) was reduced to just a few holdings around Constantinople.

Obviously the Empire waxed and waned through out this period, but as a (mostly) unified Empire the life of the Roman Empire has to at least begin with the Punic Wars (260s B.C.) to the point that the Eastern Roman Empire lost most of it's holdings outside of Constantinople) 1300-1400s... a life span of approximately 1500 years.

B. Without going into as much detail as above, the Arabic Caliphates extended from the Rashidun (632) to the Abbasids (1200s)... and arguably the Ottoman Empire, while ruled by a different ethic ruling elite, was built upon the back and utilizied all the earlier bureaucratic establishments of these earlier Caliphates and could be considered a continuation of them. That would put their life span, as Arabs only, at around 600 years and if you consider the Ottomans a continuation... add another 600 years to that.

Either way, the Arabic Caliphates lasted at least 600 years and not 200 as he said, and likewise the Ottomans were in power from the fall of Byzantine (1450s) to the late 1700s... so more like 300 years.

To stay in Europe, the Spanish Empire lasted more like 400 years (and many Spaniards would argue that modern Spain is still akin to an Empire, with a ruling ethnic/cultural group controlling regions like the Basque Country, the Galicians, the Catalunyans, etc. ), the Hellenic Period which extended at least 400-500 years, the French Colonial Empire spanning from the settlements in the Americas to the loss of their African and East Asian holdings in the 1900s... just by European standards the average age of an Empire is far more than 200 years.

That number seems to have been chosen far more for sensationalism than actual historical accuracy, and that's only if we are considering European Empires. Add in the Maharajas of India, the various states of Persia, and of course the Imperial rule of China which started at least with the Shang Dynasty (1600-1046 BC) and ended with the Qing (1644-1922).

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« Last Edit: February 08, 2019, 08:41:05 PM by Shiranu »
"Judge a moth by the beauty of its candle." - Rumi

Offline Shiranu

Re: The Fate of Empires: Lessons From History
« Reply #6 on: February 08, 2019, 05:21:01 PM »
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If after watching the video, the viewer is still clueless as what the hell was this all about, then any explanation on the content will not help.

Usually, the title of the video should be enough indication for most people.
So they can decide to watch it or move on.



It is generally considered good taste to explain why you are sharing a bit of information, however, and not to insult the people you are sharing it with for being stupid for not assuming what message you want to get across with it.

I have to admit, I was going to continue watching it because I was interested (even with the historical inaccuracies within the first two minutes), but if the only reason you shared it was to listen to people agree with you and to dismiss anyone who even is curious as to why you shared it... even if they might agree with it's message... then I have no interest in continuing to do so other than to continue and poke holes in it.
"Judge a moth by the beauty of its candle." - Rumi

Offline Baruch

Re: The Fate of Empires: Lessons From History
« Reply #7 on: February 08, 2019, 07:30:38 PM »
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A quick summary ...
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luu shalmaata luu balt’aata
May you be well, may you be healthy

Offline Baruch

Re: The Fate of Empires: Lessons From History
« Reply #8 on: February 08, 2019, 08:18:27 PM »
How about the lessons of Venezuelan history?

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How your country can be just like Cuba, and barely hang on thru Soviet/Russian or Chinese subsidy.
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luu shalmaata luu balt’aata
May you be well, may you be healthy

Re: The Fate of Empires: Lessons From History
« Reply #9 on: February 09, 2019, 01:33:32 AM »
Quote
unified Empire the life of the Roman Empire has to at least begin with the Punic Wars (260s B.C.)

The Battle of Sentinum (295 BC) cemented Roman hegemony over central Italy between the Po and Magna Graecia.  Since these new borders were up against non-Italian peoples ( Gauls to the north, Greeks to the south ) I submit that the entrance of the Roman Republic to the status of empire begins at this point.  The Romans were fairly lenient towards the various Italic peoples they conquered.  Foreigners were something new.  And the Greeks at Tarentum called in help from the  Greek mainland in the form of the Epirotes.

It doesn't really matter of course.  Their victories over Carthage in the First Punic War gave them Sicily, and they subsequently stole Corsica and Sardinia which the Carthaginians could not hold. 
The Christian church, in its attitude toward science, shows the mind of a more or less enlightened man of the Thirteenth Century. It no longer believes that the earth is flat, but it is still convinced that prayer can cure after medicine fails.

-- H. L. Mencken

Offline Baruch

Re: The Fate of Empires: Lessons From History
« Reply #10 on: February 09, 2019, 09:21:02 AM »
The Tarantines shouldn't have mocked the Roman ambassadors!  But to Greeks, Latin was .. barbarbar.
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luu shalmaata luu balt’aata
May you be well, may you be healthy

Re: The Fate of Empires: Lessons From History
« Reply #11 on: February 09, 2019, 11:09:40 AM »
Yes, or as Pyrrhus is reported to have told them when he saw a well-ordered Roman camp with moat, stockade and streets, "THAT does not look "barbaric!"
The Christian church, in its attitude toward science, shows the mind of a more or less enlightened man of the Thirteenth Century. It no longer believes that the earth is flat, but it is still convinced that prayer can cure after medicine fails.

-- H. L. Mencken

Offline Baruch

Re: The Fate of Empires: Lessons From History
« Reply #12 on: February 09, 2019, 01:28:35 PM »
The Tarantines and Epirotes were used to fighting less organized Lucani, Brutti, or Messapi.  Basically Italians living in villages, not cities.  A little forward intelligence would have taught the Roman opponents, what they were dealing with, before they got in too deep.  To be correct, S Italy wasn't fully subdued by Rome until the end of the 2nd Punic War, when Hannibal finally had to go back to Carthage.
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luu shalmaata luu balt’aata
May you be well, may you be healthy

Re: The Fate of Empires: Lessons From History
« Reply #13 on: February 09, 2019, 02:05:38 PM »
All of Italy wasn't finally "secured" until the Social Wars in the early first century BC. 

Still as Hannibal found out to his chagrin the Roman system of alliances with their "conquered" territories was such that few communities in Italy were willing to give that up for Carthaginian rule.  Poor Hannibal was a victim of thinking that his system was the only way to do things.
The Christian church, in its attitude toward science, shows the mind of a more or less enlightened man of the Thirteenth Century. It no longer believes that the earth is flat, but it is still convinced that prayer can cure after medicine fails.

-- H. L. Mencken

Offline Baruch

Re: The Fate of Empires: Lessons From History
« Reply #14 on: February 10, 2019, 03:09:54 AM »
Never secured?  The small farmers were forced off the land and the latifundia (corporate farms too over)... is that security?  Those dispossessed farmers became life time soldiers, loyal to their general, not the Senate ... and they overthrow the Republic.
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luu shalmaata luu balt’aata
May you be well, may you be healthy

 

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