Alexander Kuprin: What is war after all? Perhaps it is nothing more than a mistake made by all, a universal error, a madness.

For peace, against war: literary selections

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Anti-war essays, poems, short stories and literary excerpts

Russian writers on war

Alexander Kuprin: Deciphering the military metaphysic

Alexander Kuprin: Mounds and mountains of corpses under which moan the dying

Alexander Kuprin: The whole science of war exists only because humanity will not, or cannot, or dare not, say, ‘I won’t.’

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Alexander Kuprin
From The Duel (1905)
Translator not identified

aleksandr-kuprin_4-t

“What is war after all?” said Romashov sadly, “and why – ? Perhaps it is nothing more than a mistake made by all, a universal error, a madness. Do you mean to tell me that it is natural to kill?”

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And all the arts of war – the skilful evolutions, the cleverness of the rifle exercise, and all those tactics and fortifications on which he had wasted nine of the best years of his life, which would fill the rest of his life, and which not so…

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