The Boudicea Dilemma

I have an interest in revolutionary military science, and as such tend to look for resonance with all manner of movements aimed at destroying authority regardless of their place in time. One of the overwhelming examples of this is the image of Boudicea,  queen of the Iceni Tribe (Central coast of Britain, circa 60 CE). The story goes that her husband had decreed upon his death that the kingdom of the Iceni was to be shared equally between the Roman interlopers and his surviving wife–Boudicea, and their daughters. At this time wealthy Romans had been making outrageously large loans to the Iceni that upon the king’s death were meant to be immediately repaid. Thus for those of you who think the US Treasury, Wall Street and IMF Criminal Triad is something new and have been pulling monetarists tricks on colonial powers to drive them into poverty and servitude is a modern invention, think again. Evil men have used greed and steel since the beginning of history to destroy societies with purer hearts and minds. The local Roman commander summons Boudicea and her daughters to his presence where the mother is flogged and the daughters brutally raped by Roman legionnaires. Once released Boudicea begins enrolling other tribes like the Trinovantes, among others to destroy the Roman occupation of Britain, and brother does she mean it. The first city to fall is Camulodunum (modern Colchester), and she leaves very little living, in the process destroying the temple to the Emperor Claudius in flaming ruins. She also destroys the IX Hispana Legion sent to relieve the city. Next stop is Londinium, (London) and here one truly sees into the heart of woman as nemesis. Suetonius, the Roman Governor, realizes that he has far too few troops to defend the burgeoning city, and leaves it undefended. Boudicea with her allegiant tribes murders virtually all the inhabitants ( all told some 70,000 were put to the sword) and then systematically destroys the city, block by block. There is a coring sample in the British Museum that shows a full several inches of blackened, bloodied soil that attests to Boudicea’s anger and her rather thorough plans for London’s very first Urban Renovation. Unfortunately the time spent destroying Londinium also allows the Romans to regroup and attack. Ending her uprising somewhat later at the Battle of Watling Street. Her body, and those of her daughters were never found, though it is assumed that they either took poison, died fighting–or spent their final years wishing they’d killed more Romans. So the Dilemma is a simple one–if we know that we must utterly destroy the dominant society to allow a new anarchist sprout nourished in freedom to ripen and grow, can we ever afford to forget about the massing of the resistance just up the road? Finally the story of Boudicea should place the knowledge in the hearts of all freedom fighters that women make as effective soldiers as men, and sometimes better, as her story clearly illustrates; Boudicea knew and lived the truism that the urge to destroy is also a creative urge.


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