February 4, 2023

Red Balloons

an origami free post...

Red Balloons
Photo by Taha / Unsplash
Chinese New Year
Photo by Deb / Unsplash

Maybe I should have let this piece go?

Well, a giant balloon has been shot down. James has escaped unhurt from his peach stone carrying balloon, he is furious. Spy balloon indeed! Nena has made a few bob from people listening to her eighties hit 99 Luftballons as it is streamed on a myriad of music streaming platforms.

Once again, life imitates art. The song by Nena was a very political song. You should read the German lyrics to get the true meaning. Let us hope that we don’t find one solitary balloon because:

99 Jahre Krieg ließen keinen Platz für Sieger

Sometimes misunderstandings can lead to tension, and serious conflict possibly ensuing. One of the often overlooked examples of this is a British WINTEX CIMEX (winter exercise civil and military exercise) called Able Archer 83. The combined 1980s eastern European, Soviet dominated forces of the Warsaw Pact began an exercise called Operation RYAN at the same time. This combination of a NATO/UK exercise and the Warsaw Pact (WARPAC) operation led to the closest the world came to nuclear war. I would argue that it was a more serious situation than the Cuban Missile Crisis. It is a fascinating part of our collective history that should be studied by anyone interested in the psychology of military incompetence. The book by Prof. Norman Dixon is definitely worth a read too. My favourite bit of that book was the officer who got turned down for promotion because he played the piano…

One quick question? Didn’t Winnie the Pooh and Piglet like balloons too? All very strange.

Able Archer 83 - Wikipedia
China balloon: US shoots down airship over Atlantic
The US military hopes to recover debris from the suspected Chinese spy balloon that flew across America.
99 Luftballons - Wikipedia