The Greeks Had A Word For It

The Greeks referred to anyone who spoke a language other than Greek as a barbarian, whether Egyptian, Phoenician, Persian or whoever. The word comes from the Greek word barbaros, meaning babbler, someone who cannot be understood, and was, and was meant to be, derogatory. We still have barbarians among us, and likely always will. Today’s barbarians are our old friends the Muslim Barbary, of the Barbary Coast pirates, though they have graduated from capturing innocent sailing vessels to capturing and beheading Christians and capturing and selling Christian girls into slavery, as well as sending out suicide bombers to kill people at weddings and so forth. It used to be we called barbarians Huns; today we call them Muslims. And just as the word barbarian comes from an ancient Greek word, the word Hun comes from an ancient Chinese word. Archaeology and genetics has come together to trace early migrations of Europeans through DNA, and what was found was that at one point some ten or twelve thousand years ago, tribes of proto-Europeans, under the pressure of expanding population, left their homes in Anatolia and moved out into the wider world in all directions. Those who moved East met tribes from the East who pushed them back West. The Gauls, for instance, were driven all the way from Central Asia to the western coast of Spain by successive waves of tribes moving westward. The Romans were run into by a tribe of barbarians the Romans called the Huns, who were, it turns out, a tribe known to the Chinese as the Hsuing-nu, a name the Romans found difficult and so called them Huns. One thing is for certain: when Western civilization collapses there will be far more Huns than Swiss or Swedes.

Barbarians are with us still
The Tribe will never die
The Other we must quickly kill
And not to reason why
The human brain is wired hard
To stay with those like us
To kill who come into our yard
To take what’s theirs a plus
We think we live in nation states
We don’t, we live as tribes
Our neighborhoods control our fates
Our futures it describes
We’re born to tribes and tribal life
Though some we civilize
Who preach that war and tribal strife
Are gone, but they are lies

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