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11th December 2013
here on neutral ground
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here on neutral ground

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and we lay and we wonder when when will i come around? do i know what you are feeling here on neutral ground?
when i was visiting auschwitz in poland i remembering seeing a map of the power distribution in europe during world war 2. most of the countries were filled in with the same colour, denoting that they were under german control, which was bookended on the left and right by britain and ussr. what surprised me the most though wasn't the size and scale of the nazi occupation - but the fact that right in the middle there was a swiss shaped hole. i couldn't get my head around how a relatively small country, which borders germany, could be surrounded by occupied countries yet remain neutral. if a country is going to invade, kill and take over somewhere else then why would it stop and respect that places' neutrality? i tried to read up on it but to be honest i still couldn't quite make sense of it. it seemed to boil down to the fact that the costs to the germans would have outweighed the benefits of scaling the swiss alps and taking the country over. plus there were financial incentives in not pissing off the swiss, with the flow of money between germany and switzerland helping fund the third reich. this seemingly paints switzerland in a negative light, but the more i delved into the subject, the more apparent it was that no nation came out of the conflict in any positive way. and when you start thinking in those lines it's hard not to become more and more misanthropic, there were no good guys, just bad people and worse people. either way i was glad that i timed my visit to switzerland after my trip poland, i mean sure humanity sucks, but at least we still have a pretty planet.

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11/12/2013
here on neutral ground
when i was visiting auschwitz in poland i remembering seeing a map of the power distribution in europe during world war 2. most of the countries were filled in with the same colour, denoting that they were under german control, which was bookended on the left and right by britain and ussr. what surprised me the most though wasn't the size and scale of the nazi occupation - but the fact that right in the middle there was a swiss shaped hole. i couldn't get my head around how a relatively small country, which borders germany, could be surrounded by occupied countries yet remain neutral. if a country is going to invade, kill and take over somewhere else then why would it stop and respect that places' neutrality? i tried to read up on it but to be honest i still couldn't quite make sense of it. it seemed to boil down to the fact that the costs to the germans would have outweighed the benefits of scaling the swiss alps and taking the country over. plus there were financial incentives in not pissing off the swiss, with the flow of money between germany and switzerland helping fund the third reich. this seemingly paints switzerland in a negative light, but the more i delved into the subject, the more apparent it was that no nation came out of the conflict in any positive way. and when you start thinking in those lines it's hard not to become more and more misanthropic, there were no good guys, just bad people and worse people. either way i was glad that i timed my visit to switzerland after my trip poland, i mean sure humanity sucks, but at least we still have a pretty planet.

here's the original