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History needn't be boring. Sure, there are many teachers out there who constantly jabber on about the state of politics, the electoral system and the Industrial revolution and that's fine. Personally, I like to focus more on the violence though.
History is chock full of epic events and ass kickings. Moments so awesome it shouldn't have been allowed to occur but it did anyway. Moments where one side was totally triumphant and the other left in the realisation they'd been ass kicked.
These are the best of them.
The 5 greatest ass-kickings in History
5. Afghanistan beats the Soviet Union
The Soviet union, may it rest in very small and very numerous pieces, was the universal scare of the entire western world. With a ridiculous number of nuclear bombs and seemingly endless supplies of semi drunk fearless soldiers we thought our days were numbered. Especially after the rice-fuelled fuckup that was the Vietnam war.
Then, the all conquering Soviet empire decided it would crack down on some Afghani rebels who, obviously foolishly, stood up against their tyranny. In a turn of events worthy of a Hollywood movie (which was promptly produced), the Afghani rebels with their seriously cool sounding name (Mujahedien) turned the tables, slaughtered thousands of Soviets and kept up the war long enough for the Soviet Union to lose interest and, you know, completely fall apart.
It was awesome. It was epic. It was funded with American dollars! And that final jem of information is the source of one of the biggest ironies in history as the Mujahedien became the Taliban and Osama Bin Laden, proud recipient of American weapons, American Ammunition and American praise, became their biggest enemy.
Gods, Irony is a bitch isnít it?
4. Vietnam manages not to be crushed by United States
It was a typical day in history when the French got their asses kicked by the Vietnamese at Dien Bien phu. Their usual mix of overbearing, unfounded arrogance and military incompetence ensured they forever lost their hold on any part of Asia. They got soundly beaten and many celebrations were had by both the Vietnamese and the Germans who still, secretly, chuckle any time something bad happens to the French.
That would have been the end of the story had the Americans not decided that North Vietnam was in fact a breeding place of (gasp) communists! The south had to be preserved from its monstrous, red flag waving brethren and the only way to do that was to send in troops! Lots of troops in fact. And so began the sad saga of Americaís worst military disaster since the Iraq uprisings. Thereís something weird about this defeat in that it wasn't really a defeat. Not at all. The statistics speak for themselves. 45 000 000 liters of agent orange were used in the largest deforestation operation of all time. Over 4 million people died from dioxin poisoning alone. Another million Vietnamese were killed in battle. Each time the Vietnamese tried anything they were bombed to pieces for their troubles. Compare this to the 50.000 American casualties and you'll agree that the numbers certainly favor the Americans.
So the Americans didnít actually lose in the traditional sense. Its just that they failed to win. When one side relies on hiding from your monstrously numerous and powerful guns and your tactics come down to Ďlets bomb the jungle some moreí its easy to get bored with the whole thing and before you know it, public opinion turns on you and you find the dumbest people in the country running the show.
Seriously, when people come up with signs like the one below, you know the lunatics have taken over.
And thatís why they lost.
3. Napoleon kicks the crap out of Europe
Napoleon didnít like the French. In fact, he despised the French. As a resident of Corsica he was taught to hate the French and everything they stood for. With that opinion he made himself popular in every other country in Europe yet historical irony determined he be master of France, conquer all of Europe in the name of France and be considered the greatest Frenchman who ever lived.
Irony IS a bitch, isnít it?
Historians canít really agree on Napoleonís motivations but they can agree that he was one mean small son of a bitch. Even as a lowly artillery commander he wasnít afraid to order wholesale slaughter upon bands of barely armed protesters on the streets of Paris. He didnít like it when people opposed him. He really didnít. Which is why he grabbed power as soon as he could get his grubby little hands on the necks of every guy who said it was a bad idea. Which was very soon. He disbanded any form of parliament and crowned himself Emperor in the biggest display of arrogant douchebaggery ever seen.
Then, just to prove he could be a bigger asshole then all of his contemporaries (and boy, was the 17th century filled with assholes) he led an army of the people he hated to conquer all of Europe. He got all the way to Moscow and the only way the Russians stopped him was by setting their city on fire and running away, which is the only way the Russians ever win anything.
Napoleon eventually fell prey to the universal law of douchebaggery. Keep it up for long enough and someone will punch you in the face. It took the entire military might of Europe to take Napoleon down in what is now called Ďthe battle of the nationsí and they didnít call it that because they served Bratwurst and Fish&chips at the catering. Then, they had to do it again because the vindictive bastard wouldnít stay defeated!
2. The Germans humiliate the French
The French could have dominated this list if I had let them. They received more historic ass kickings then anyone. One of them stands out though.
Any military historian will tell you that the Maginot line of 1939 was one of the worst ideas in history. Unsurprisingly perhaps then, it was an idea of the French who, having learned very little from the first world war, simply thought that building an even bigger defensive structure would surely work in keeping the Germans out. Hey, if it didnít work the first time and you lose millions of soldiers in a senseless war you can always try it again right?
Problem was that even though the French hadnít learned anything from World War 1, the Germans had. They had been busy building modern weapons, training modern armies and nurturing modern innovative commanders. The French did nothing and sat waiting in their giant defensive line.
It came as no surprise to anyone, except the French, that the Maginot line was bypassed by the German armies via Belgium and Holland. The Germanic hordes then proceeded to rampage through all of France for a few days until the British expedition army (the only real defenders of France, ironically) got the hell out and left France to become an interesting tourist site for the Fuhrer and his buddies.
It was the second worst ass kicking in all of history and the Intelligent Design theory is thoroughly discredited for God would surely not allow any people this fucking dumb to survive for so long.
1. Cortes slaughters the living crap out of America
Never in the history of continents has a continent been so thoroughly ass-raped as Central America by the Spaniards in 1519. The voyages of discovery had been going on for thirty years and it was a matter of time before someone thought of the brilliant idea of sending armed people instead of traders to start stealing riches and take slaves. Itís the European way.
The man who first discovered America truly was the land of opportunities (for wholesale slaughter and thievery!) was Hernando Cortes. He arrived on the beaches of Mexico with 500 men in 1519 and promptly started threatening the locals. These locals, known by that dumbass Columbus as ĎIndiansí after having been beaten to a bloody pulp by superior European weaponry openly welcomed the new arrivals and offered them gifts, food and cups of their own blood. Cortes readily accepted all this, except the blood which he thought he had plenty already, seeing as he was practically bathing in the blood of thousands of slaughtered Indians he had killed in his first day on mainland America (the Spanish didnít fool around when it came to massacring stuff). He quickly proceeded to order a march inland to see if there were other folks they could massacre. Uhm, I mean liberate from their wicked Indian heretical customs.
Now, his next feat of arms is one that boggles the mind in its bloodiness. Most historians consider it just plain evil yet strangely awesome at the same time. They use those words, honest.
Cortes, in the next few years managed to conquer an empire of 25 million people, rob them of pretty much all their gold and turned them into strangers in their own land. He did this with help from other Indians, some good old fashioned European sword swinging with a little Spanish talent for massacring defenseless people and had a good deal of help from Europeís old friend, smallpox.
Note at the picture how the Indians all seem very annoyed at this.
Ok, so smallpox did most of the killing. Who cares? Its still an epic ass kicking if ever there was one. The Spanish ended up with all the riches and the Mexicans got, well Mexico, which is considered the biggest cultural disaster in history. The Americans built an electric fence to keep them out for Godís sake! They should have called it ĎCortes fenceí. That ought to scare themÖ.
History is written by the winners. And the losers? They end up in mocking articles.