Sherlock Holmes

Posted on January 6, 2013


Guy Ritchie’s 2011 film, Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows, includes one of Hollywood’s favorite tropes, the deluded revolutionaries. In this case, anarchists carrying out bombings in 1890s Europe are a tool of the evil Professor Moriarty, bent on driving the major powers to a world war so that he could profit through his newly acquired armament industries. Interestingly, the movie contains its own rebuttal. When Moriarty is foiled, he arrogantly boasts that the anarchist bombings would only have hastened the inevitable war. While the filmmakers are suggesting that Holmes is battling a bellicose human nature, we would argue that it is the nature of States, not of humans, to engage in fratricidal wars for the benefit of a few, and in fact the conspiracies and meddling of weapons c0nsortiums and industrialist was definitely a factor in the outbreak of World War I. The point is, States have no need of hidden conspiracies to start wars. They were designed to organize wars–and that includes organizing the excuses–from their inception. It is also important to note that historically, anarchist bombings in that period did not increase conflicts between states, they actually led to some of the first international police cooperation, as the tsarist and other secret police organizations began collaborating to try to arrest the anarchists. And anarchists were a major force–in many countries, such as the Netherlands and Spain, the major force–in the antimilitarist movement that attempted to put an end to all wars.

Posted in: The Man Says