In order to save the city, we had to destroy it” said a US Army Lieutenant after the battle of Hue during the Set offensive 1968. Without getting a morality debate about weighting US imperialism vs irregular VC warfare, we shall simply look at the statement as such.
Destroy the city to save it. Save what? obviously not architecture since that was leveled. In the case of Hue, it was needed as a strong point and fire base to ensure further missions. So in that regard it was saved.
But Hue isn’t the only city which had to endure such a s faith. Berlin comes to mind. In the 20s, Berlin was the capital of Europe, maybe even the world. Culturally, politically, economically it was a powerhouse. Fast forward to the great crash in 1929 and the Nazi take over in 33, Berlin transforms into something darker. Pretty sure Josephine Baker would not have been hired by Goebbels ( lets see who gets that one).
Then came the bombings as well as the hand to hand combat with the red army which reduced the city to rubble.
Here I need to insert a joke that I have been itching to tell for a while: when Hitler was elected his promise was ” Give me four years and you won’t recognize Germany”
The people of Berlin wrote that on the rubble and added ” correct”
Trump in 2016: I have an idea….
After the war, you had the separation of Berlin into east and west, cumulating in the building of the wall in 1961.
Was Berlin really saved?
In some strange way, yes. The 20s spirit returned to the western part of the city, my guess is that the whole ” dancing on a nuclear volcano” scenario attracted mainly dare devils and dreamers.
What does that have to do with today?
I feel that the federal government and mayor de Blasio are hell bent on killing NYC in more ways than one.
1. Letting 1.5 million NYers starve
2. wasteful administrative set up as in does the mayors wife really need a two million $ a year staff?
3. Killing small business by refusing aid , we are talking low six figures here.
4. Enabling chains to take over by giving them aid. Here I do mean billions.
5. Being tone-deaf toward the police. The majority of cops are good people.
6. Not protecting low income citizens from slipping into homelessness and despair.
Is there an upside to this?
As always, the answer is: it depends. If we get proper personnel on top and all of us pull together.
1. The lower real estate cost could be a chance for small business to start fresh or expand IF they can stay liquid long enough.
2. The 900k people who left need to replaced with dreamers and dare devils.
3. The NYPD and the NY citizens need to come an understanding and not fight each other.
4. Do not raise taxes! Nobody here has any money! If anything get 100 billion $ from Bezos and Musk.
Then we actually might able to save the city.