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FROLICKING WITH THE FRENCH

NO WRITER ATTRIBUTED

From a spectator's point of view, it seems as if savage and nomad tribes must glean abundant fun from their belligerent frolics with civilized nations. It's very likely that they enjoy carnage more than their more straightened adversaries. Yet apart from sedistic impulses, there are other reasons which put the weight of the war upon the civilized nation. It must carry, often overseas, always into wilderness, food; ammunitions and other trappings of a specialized war machine, the usual items of the "white man's burden"; while the unspecialized natives wage their war on a rather homeless homeland by the simple process of gathering, attacking, striking camp, and dispersing like deer.

So when one reads that Ab-El-Krim has ended the French war in Morocco by a nonchalant sort of surrender, one feels that indeed it has been a French war. By far the larger proportion of troops engaged were French; most of the casualties were French; and the victory is French because the Arabs are tired of the game.

Of course, politically and economically, there is a serious conflict of civilizations, differently yet earnestly realized on each side. On the Arab side, the present passing contest was both a racial and religious war. On the part of the French, it was an imperialistic war. Yet in the war itself, these issues fade because the outcome was never in doubt. By virtue of numbers, the French would win. But as a matter of curiosity it is interesting to watch a powerful modern nation slapping legions onto desert soil to crush a savage mosquito.

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