When a foreign army invades and occupies your country, you need to compare the short-term payoff for collaboration with the probability of being executed by the resistance, or by your countrymen if and when the occupier is driven out. Assurances that you’ll be evacuated if necessary are honoured more in the breach than the observance. So the smart money almost invariably goes to keeping yourself and your family as clear of the fray as possible. In short, people who trust the occupier have no one to blame but themselves. When quisling regimes fall, they fall very rapidly. And when they do it’s the occupier’s nationals at the front of the line on the roof of his embassy. And there are only so many choppers and so much room on each.

The Americans are particular adept at abandoning their erstwhile allies. Vietnam, Syria, now Afghanistan … What’s interesting is that collaborators never learn. Being promised you’ll be evacuated is no promise at all if it’s not accompanied by an iron-clad how. And iron-clad how’s are nigh impossible to come by.  

Categories: Everything You Wanted to Know About What's Going On in the World But Were Afraid to Ask, Social and Political Philosophy

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1 reply

  1. Part of the reason why collaborators collaborate is because they are well paid for doing so, compared to the income that is otherwise locally available. Looking ahead to when the invasion inevitably fails – perhaps 20 years later, as in Afghanistan – requires more foresight than is generally available.


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