Sevastopol : Chapter 07
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(1828 - 1910) ~ Father of Christian Anarchism : In 1861, during the second of his European tours, Tolstoy met with Proudhon, with whom he exchanged ideas. Inspired by the encounter, Tolstoy returned to Yasnaya Polyana to found thirteen schools that were the first attempt to implement a practical model of libertarian education. (From : Anarchy Archives.)
• "People who take part in Government, or work under its direction, may deceive themselves or their sympathizers by making a show of struggling; but those against whom they struggle (the Government) know quite well, by the strength of the resistance experienced, that these people are not really pulling, but are only pretending to." (From : "A Letter to Russian Liberals," by Leo Tolstoy, Au....)
• "It usually happens that when an idea which has been useful and even necessary in the past becomes superfluous, that idea, after a more or less prolonged struggle, yields its place to a new idea which was till then an ideal, but which thus becomes a present idea." (From : "Patriotism and Government," by Leo Tolstoy, May 1....)
• "The Government and all those of the upper classes near the Government who live by other people's work, need some means of dominating the workers, and find this means in the control of the army. Defense against foreign enemies is only an excuse. The German Government frightens its subjects about the Russians and the French; the French Government, frightens its people about the Germans; the Russian Government frightens its people about the French and the Germans; and that is the way with all Governments. But neither Germans nor Russians nor Frenchmen desire to fight their neighbors or other people; but, living in peace, they dread war more than anything else in the world." (From : "Letter to a Non-Commissioned Officer," by Leo Tol....)
Prince Galtsin met more and more wounded men, in stretchers and on foot, supporting each other, and talking loudly.
“When they rushed up, brothers,” said one tall soldier, who had two guns on his shoulder, in a bass voice, “when they rushed up and shouted, ‘Allah, Allah!’[G] they pressed each other on. You kill one, and another takes his place—you can do nothing. You never saw such numbers as there were of them....”
But at this point in his story Galtsin interrupted him.
“You come from the bastion?”
“Just so, Your Honor!”
“Well, what has been going on there? Tell me.”
“Why, what has been going on? They attacked in force, Your Honor; they climbed over the wall, and that's the end of it. They conquered completely, Your Honor.”
“How conquered? You repulsed them, surely?”
“How could we repulse them, when he came up with his whole force? They killed all our men, and there was no help given us.”
The soldier was mistaken, for the trenches were behind our forces; but this is a peculiar thing, which any one may observe: a soldier who has been wounded in an engagement always thinks that the day has been lost, and that the encounter has been a frightfully bloody one.
“Then, what did they mean by telling me that you had repulsed them?” said Galtsin, with irritation. “Perhaps the enemy was repulsed after you left? Is it long since you came away?”
“I have this instant come from there, Your Honor,” replied the soldier. “It is hardly possible. The trenches remained in his hands ... he won a complete victory.”
“Well, and are you not ashamed to have surrendered the trenches? This is horrible!” said Galtsin, angered by such indifference.
“What, when he was there in force?” growled the soldier.
“And, Your Honor,” said a soldier on a stretcher, who had just come up with them, “how could we help surrendering, when nearly all of us had been killed? If we had been in force, we would only have surrendered with our lives. But what was there to do? I ran one man through, and then I was struck.... O-oh! softly, brothers! steady, brothers! go more steadily!... O-oh!” groaned the wounded man.
“There really seem to be a great many extra men coming this way,” said Galtsin, again stopping the tall soldier with the two rifles. “Why are you walking off? Hey there, halt!”
The soldier halted, and removed his cap with his left hand.
“Where are you going, and why?” he shouted at him sternly. “He ...”
But, approaching the soldier very closely at that moment, he perceived that the latter's right arm was bandaged, and covered with blood far above the elbow.
“I am wounded, Your Honor!”
“It must have been a bullet, here!” said the soldier, pointing at his arm,[Pg 74] “but I cannot tell yet. My head has been broken by something,” and, bending over, he showed the hair upon the back of it all clotted together with blood.
“And whose gun is that second one you have?”
“A choice French one, Your Honor! I captured it. And I should not have come away if it had not been to accompany this soldier; he might fall down,” he added, pointing at the soldier, who was walking a little in front, leaning upon his gun, and dragging his left foot heavily after him.
Prince Galtsin all at once became frightfully ashamed of his unjust suspicions. He felt that he was growing crimson, and turned away, without questioning the wounded men further, and, without looking after them, he went to the place where the injured men were being cared for.
Having forced his way with difficulty to the porch, through the wounded men who had come on foot, and the stretcher-bearers, who were entering with the wounded and emerging with the dead, Galtsin entered the first room, glanced round, and involuntarily turned back, and immediately ran into the street. It was too terrible.
From : Gutenberg.org
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