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[personal profile] capt_kasya
For some reason, I find myself thinking about Vitya.

Actually, I know what the reason is. Budapest. The Hungarian Revolution.

Protesting students had started it when their anti-Communist demonstration turned into a riot that had spread like gangrene through an infected wound, and ended up turning into a spontaneous armed revolt across the entire country. The government had fallen quickly to their makeshift militia forces.

We were sent there with the Soviet army to put it down, to quell the revolt and return order to the country, by force. Thousands of civilians were killed.

Vitya and I were lucky. We didn't have to fire a single shot while we were there. I don't think I would have felt right about killing civilians.

But Vitya took it a step further. He said we shouldn't have been there at all, that the Hungarians should have been allowed to govern themselves.

I didn't want to hear it. I didn't care about politics.

Still don't.

But Vitya did. He cared a lot. He saw the big picture, the larger morality. What use was it to live by a personal code when you ignored it when it counted the most, he asked me.

The situation is far greater than us, I told him. One man, or two, can't make a difference, and would only get swallowed by the tide if they tried to stand against it.

You can still care, Vitya said.

I didn't understand that, at the time. Caring wasn't my job. My job was to do my job, and nothing more. Caring about something I couldn't personally change would only lead to needless heartache.

But now...

I find myself thinking about what Ocelot just told me, about Colonel Volgin's plans.

Volgin wants to rule the world.

It's absurd. Hitler couldn't do it.

Alexander couldn't do it.

The Persians, the Mauryans, the Romans, none of them conquered, and managed to hold their power. I know it'll be the same with the Colonel, especially in this modern world.

But the thing is, all of the people who tried left footprints as deep as the Black Sea. Ripples that washed over the shores of history, changed the course of nations, left millions dead, and made the world irrevocably different.

Is that what I'm looking at, right here, and right now?

Is that what's in store for the future?

Am I standing at the brink of another sea change, but this time, I'm on the wrong side of the larger morality?

Perhaps the most pertinent question of all is, can I stop myself from caring?

It never used to be an issue, before.

Damn you, Vitya.
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September 2009

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