To the ground

Reading: JG Ballard High Rise
Listening to: Theo Parrish First Floor

Iain Sinclair in the LRB on the razing of East London for the 2012 Olympics:

The scam of scams was always the Olympics: Berlin in 1936 to Beijing in 2008. Engines of regeneration. Orgies of lachrymose nationalism. War by other means. Warrior-athletes watched, from behind dark glasses, by men in suits and uniforms. The pharmaceutical frontline. Rogue Californian chemists running their eye-popping, vein-clustered, vest-stripping robots against degendered state laboratory freaks. Bearded ladies and teenage girls who never have periods. Medals returned by disgraced drug cheats to be passed on to others who weren’t caught, that time. The Millennium Dome fiasco was a low-rent rehearsal. The holy grail for blue-sky thinkers was the sport-transcends-politics Olympiad, the five-hooped golden handcuffs, the smoke rings behind which deals could be done for casinos and malls: with corporate sponsorship, flag-waving and infinitely elastic budgets (any challenge an act of naysaying treason).

the blue gate

‘Never believe that a smooth space will suffice to save us.’ One of those caveats from A Thousand Plateaus that people forget when they get too wrapped up in their rhizomes and nomads.  Derive without a map.  According this post over at Vimothy’s House of War that’s where the Israeli IDF found itself after after shelving Sun Tzu for Deleuze, Guattari and Debord ahead of its 2006 invasion of Lebanon.  Apparently there was something to the Frieze article from that year which claimed that smoothing was the IDF’s new strategy for overcoming complicating striations like the walls between people’s homes.  Doors and streets are obsolete, just smash and move – up, down, sideways – invisible from the outside.  Now, Vimothy links to an analysis of the 2006 disaster published in The Journal of Strategic Studies which claims that Israel’s fatal blundering had something to do with commanders getting so wrapped up in post-structuralist theory that they forgot how formulate straightforward commands and objectives.

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