Warren Sproule (Warren.Sproule@SOCIOL.UTAS.EDU.AU)
Thu, 13 Oct 1994 13:36:05 +0200

In response to the 3 recent incisive and authoritative postings by Daniel
Foss, and addressing his one-word admonition to 'rethink' (10/11), there
seems to be a major misunderstanding here. Rereading Scott Holmes' earlier
posts on the issue, I note that Scott's central concern is to criticise the
Mike Salovesh exemption of "nomads" from his *general* definintion of
'war'. Scott not only regarded the Mongol invasion as 'not, by itself,
germane to a discussion of "primitive warfare"' (10/10), but earlier
suggested that they perhaps represented a distinct "predatory" or
"parasitic" culture-type (10/4), ie, by implication they're *not*
'primitive'. My own position is likewise that the Mongols are specifically
*not* 'primitive'. This rests on my general "no such thing as primitive
war" line. What I was getting at in the (admittedly wordy!) posting of 10/7
was the Deleuzoguattarian distinction b/w a 'state apparatus' and a 'nomad
war machine', a distinction that looks nothing like the
'Western/Advanced-Primitive paradigm' you refer to (10/12). In other words,
I *fully concur* with your assessment that the Mongols were not
'primitive', and for precisely the reasons that you provide in your
informative postings on the issue. With all due respect, I think you've got
this arse-around. Please let me know if I'm misrepresenting you here...