pster wrote:"I would be willing to wager that if an average citizen of Athens of 1,000 BC were to appear suddenly among us, he or she would be among the brightest and most intellectually alive of our colleagues and companions,"
Jeff Tirey wrote:These topics are always fun to debate and I agree that the date of 1000 BC is so far back in Athenian history that it was chosen to make a cleaner argument. For one thing it avoids entirely the Peloponnesian War where the Athenian populace in majority thought it was a splendid idea to invade Syracuse.
Jeff Tirey wrote:Hi Daivid, it's good to speak with you.
Jeff Tirey wrote:I didn't read the full article, so it looks like I'm commenting out of context.
Jeff Tirey wrote:But to the point of the Athenian invasion of Sicily, I didn't say Athenians were stupid,
Jeff Tirey wrote:... but I am saying that they made a horrible decision that at the outset, the majority thought was the right course of action.
On the facts, history tells us it was a colossal failure. It was a conflict started in the middle of the Peloponnesian War and all in the expedition were lost. To you're point, maybe it could have gone better if the leaders held a different course, but I think that can be said in any conflict. The whole lesson of the Peloponnesian war is that wars start off in small places for small things and have a way of getting bigger, deadlier and more out of control than anyone could have imagined at the start.
But for the Athenians who votes yes at the outset, I don't believe they fully appreciated the land size of Sicily, the dynamics of the region, nor how the conflict was a land conflict despite Syracuse being on the coast. I could be wrong about this, my memory of this subject is not as sharp and I have never studied this conflict in detail.
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