Friedrich Nietzsche, Human All Too Human (Menschliches, Allzumenschliches), subtitled A Book for Free Spirits (Ein Buch für freie Geister).

First published in 1878.   A second part, Assorted Opinions and Maxims (Vermischte Meinungen und Sprüche), was published in 1879, and a third part, The Wanderer and his Shadow (Der Wanderer und sein Schatten), followed in 1880.

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Previous Section   442. THE NATIONAL ARMY   Next Section

THE NATIONAL ARMY.  The greatest disadvantage of the national army, now so much glorified, lies in the squandering of men of the highest civilisation; it is only by the favourableness of all circumstances that there are such men at all; how carefully and anxiously should we deal with them, since long periods are required to create the chance conditions for the production of such delicately organised brains!  But as the Greeks wallowed in the blood of Greeks, so do Europeans now in the blood of Europeans: and indeed, taken relatively, it is mostly the highly cultivated who are sacrificed, those who promise an abundant and excellent posterity; for such stand in the front of the battle as commanders, and also expose themselves to most danger, by reason of their higher ambition.  At present, when quite other and higher tasks are assigned than patria and honor, the rough Roman patriotism is either something dishonourable or a sign of being behind the times.  
 

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