There was once an army of a nation ‘long suppressed’ – an army following a long and fine tradition, an army made of determined warriors from all corners of the nation; an army who battled on fields of green and glory, and the battles they fought were true tests of valour and determination and skill and individual grace.
The army of this nation had been fighting these testing battles for over 75 years – often with great passion, and great zest, and, not so often, with victory as the reward. The army was always greatly loved by the people of the nation, and the warriors became symbols of hope and pride – they represented, in those testing battles, what the nation stood for – unity in diversity, valour, the spirit of fairness and justice, individual effort in the common cause.
Then, about two and a half years ago, this army, led by a calm and astute general, did what no other army of this nation had ever done – they conquered the world; in the testing battles around the globe, this army became the very best – mighty opponents were met, face to face, and conquered – the billions who live in this nation, were stunned into a silence of such deep pride, that it was as if a new dawn had arrived, a new breeze of knowledge swept across battlefield and playing field alike.
It was an army consisting of great veterans and enthusiastic youth, of power and grace and courage and extraordinary confidence – and at the helm was the general, calm and collected and yet capable of explosive power.
And the army did not rest on its laurels – oh, no… oh, no – it then conquered the world in a shorter form of this battle of green and glory, a form where the testing time of battle was focused into a single day, and where victory and defeat where often but shadow images of each other – but the army won, and won with such style and courage that the entire nation rose as one to salute them, to love them, to reward them.
It had never happened before – for this army, for this nation – to be world champions in two separate forms of this battle, at one time. It was as if all the gods of all the religions of this great nation were blessing the army, and the warriors.
After the latest triumph, only four months ago, the army should have celebrated and rejoiced, and then rested and recovered, preparing themselves for the next series of battles hence, only two months away — for those battles were to be followed by even a greater series of battles, against an army with such tradition and such form on its side, not to mention the battles being fought on its home soil.
But what did the army of the world champions do? They did not rest and recover, instead they indulged in childish battles, fought like picnics, for the sake of money and empty fame – there was no valour, no grace, no dignity – the warriors where reduced to mercenaries, and yet they played, entertaining masses of people who sought only a few hours of thrills, of sound and fury signifying nothing.
And the result? That fine, fine army fell apart – physically, emotionally, morally. The taut excellence was ripped asunder – so that when the next round of battles began, six of the eleven victorious warriors of only two months before did not even participate. It was a mockery – a descent from grace so tragic, that its scope is only being felt now – six of the warriors, whom the entire nation had loved and cherished, either refusing to go into battle two months later, or injured at the picnics and thus not ready for true tests.
With what battered flags did the warriors trot out their excuses – fatigue, the need to rest, injuries – if they had only not indulged in the picnic emptiness, and used that time to recover and restrengthen, the glorious army would be marching forward even today.
Even the general let down the side – he also was not there for the first true battle after becoming conquerors of the world.
And now, another two months later, that once mighty army is on its knees, battered and bruised and humiliated – the general is fumbling and giving out excuses now, which do him and his army no honour whatsoever.
A few warriors who battled on without abandoning the army are still with head held high – but the army is gone, scattered by greed and senseless play. The fine thread of victory is a fragile thing, and the army, instead of cherishing it, took it for granted, and it snapped with a sigh.
Even as the entire nation, so long suppressed, longs for the glory of that army, only four months gone…
This army, this nation, long suppressed, worked miracles – and they will again…
But for now, in a distant land, where the battles of green and glory began so many, many years ago – the army is in tatters, and the nation is confused and bitter, and hope is a shadow now, lurking in patches of half-forgotten brilliance…