There’s little doubt that the Spartans, infamous Greek warriors from the militaristic nation-state Sparta, were unapologetic alpha-men that welcomed the glory of a “perfect death”. Unlike the other warring Greek city-states of antiquity, Sparta’s entire society was erected with one common objective, the production of defect-free infant males, appropriated by the State and tirelessly transformed into the world’s most disciplined killing machines.
The powerful state of Sparta was so
pathologically committed to developing a military superman, capable of
repelling any adversary that could threaten their strange utopia, they would
pluck children from parents at the young age of seven and relocate them into a
savage world which prepared them for a beautiful death.
Most people remember the Spartans as those
plucky picturesque marvels from the movie 300, heroically bulldozing the
massive Persian army into the dirt for three days.
movie’s premise is historically accurate, a small number of Spartans had
bravely repelled the mighty Persian army, until the Adam Schiff
of antiquity betrayed his fellow Spartans by alerting Xerxes
to a secret passage.
Battle (480 bc)
Leonidas chose the favorable terrain of
Thermopylae (the Hot Gates) to square off with Xerxes and the Persians, at the
time, the passage of the Hot Gates was not much larger than a baseball diamond.
This greatly marginalized the vast hordes of Perian fighters intent upon
subjugating all of Greece.
Once King Leonidas was made aware of his
army’s impending doom, he generously ordered the other Greek soldiers to return
home, he and his 300 would occupy the advancing Persians. Some Greeks remained
on the battlefield to aid the Spartans in their suicidal last stand.
A large contingent of Persians marched over
the secret passage, while the Spartans were distracted with the battle before
them, the enemy exposed their rear flank, encircling the Spartans and
eventually snuffing them out. When King Leonidas and his men realized that they
were surrounded and their struggle was futile, they could have crumbled like
average men, instead, they would make the Persians earn a victory.
When their spears eventually broke on the
bones of their enemy, the Spartans used their bare hands and teeth, desperately
attempting to reach Hades with as many Persians as possible.
Although the mighty Persians eventually
triumphed at Thermopylae, a despondent Xerxes and the boys were unable
to successfully continue on and subjegate the Greek city-states, they
eventually limped back home, thus ultimately saving the West.
During the time of King Leonidas, Greece
consisted of many city-states, plagued by constant wars and power struggles,
making them ripe for the plucking. However, in 338 bc Alexander the Great
forcibly consolidated most of Greece and exacted brutal revenge against the
the Great able to invade and conquer the Persian kingdom and establish the
greatest empire that the world had ever seen? What became of Sparta?
Their sole industry was the production of an
elite race of uber-soldier, they even enslaved an entire nation of people (the
Helots) to labor away at the day to day, while Spartan men could focus solely
on achieving military greatness.
The Spartans never enjoyed the fruits of a
long-standing empire, there were many contributing factors which led to their
unceremonious demise. The most obvious
event to befall Sparta and grind her remaining supremacy to a halt was a
disjointed battle on the fields of
Leuctra, against fellow Greeks.
The Spartans were violently routed by Thebes,
their one-time ally, the battle had exposed a beleaguered Spartan force that
was tragically disorganized from the start.
In short order the Spartan Generals fell, leaving the frantic soldiers
without a command.
Spartans never Recovered
People attribute Spartas crippling battle
with Thebes as the event that broke the militaristic society beyond repair,
however, it’s my contention that they already were a for-gone conclusion.
The Spartans that met for battle on the
fields of Leuctra were no longer the tenacious titans that welcomed a beautiful
death at Thermopylae, they’d been
ravaged by unfortunate circumstances and the inability to update rigid cultural
The Spartans refusal to adapt was certainly
counter-productive, although their stoic conservatism was the catalyst for
maintaining their stringent discipline, their stubborn rejection of the
necessary retooling, made it impossible to right any wrongs.
A glaring weakness was Sparta’s bizarre
ritual of courting and relations with the opposite sex, unlike women from other
Greek city-states, Spartan women dominated their husbands. If a Spartan male
was unsuccessful in knocking up his wife, she would enlist the services of a
more fertile fellow.
The truth behind Sparta’s inability to preserve a long-lasting empire was an unsustainably low birth-rate, they were massively outnumbered by their slaves, the Helots and the very real fear of revolt definitely occupied the Spartan mind.
The failure to replace and advance the number of elite Spartan warriors had left them increasingly vulnerable to a slave revolt, they were often outnumbered on the battlefield, and couldn’t possibly maintain an empire with a beleaguered surplus of their most valuable commodity, the tenacious and hyper-disciplined Spartan Warrior.
Alexander is the founder and editor of The Far Right Report, news website dedicated preserving European heritage.