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Dan Carlin

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Attention history buffs and non-partisans...

This guy is really interesting. Dan Carlin is a major history guy and also poses some really nice ideas about how to confront what we call politics. He's big on gaining historical perspective to understand where we are right now.

There are two different podcast series, one based on history (Hardcore History) and the other with his non-partisan discussions (Common Sense)

To get an idea of what he discusses:

Alexander Versus Hitler : Dan compares the way the modern world sees Adolf Hitler with the way history views Alexander the Great and wonders if the two men weren't more alike than different.

Steppe Stories : Blood-sucking Scythian warriors, tattooed ice mummies, Amazons killing so they can mate, pot smoking head-hunters, scalp-taking, koumiss-drinking Mongols, Turks, Huns, and Aliens. What's not to like?

Bubonic Nukes : What would happen if half the population died in a short period of time? Dan looks at the Black Death and other plagues that created almost apocalyptic conditions in the past...and maybe in the future.

Judgment at Nineveh : Will our modern society ever decline and fall? Dan uses that idea as a backdrop for a look at the first great empire in history, the biblical-era Assyrians. Were they ancient Nazis, or the guardians of civilization?

Apache Tears : A traumatized people who traumatized their neighbors, the Native American tribe known as Apache were among the last Indians to surrender to the U.S. Government.

Punic Nightmares I : Was it geopolitics or simply bitter hatred that fueled the ancient bloodbaths known as "The Punic Wars"? Dan highlights the unimaginable things people experienced during this intense face-off between Rome and Carthage.

Ghosts of the Ostfront I : Part One covering the conflict between the Germans and the Soviet Union in the Second World War. Dan gives an introduction to the subject and discusses the causes and opening moves of Operation Barbarossa.

Ghosts of the Ostfront II : In Part Two of the Ostfront series covering WW2 on the Eastern Front, Dan looks at the attempt to take Moscow and the many compelling stories surrounding the momentous 1941 German offensive.

Ghosts of the Ostfront III : In Part Three of the Ostfront series covering WW2 on the Eastern Front, Dan looks at the situation in the U.S.S.R. during 1942 and early 1943, including the dreadful Battle of Stalingrad.

Ghosts of the Ostfront IV : In Part Four of the Ostfront series covering WW2 on the Eastern Front, Dan looks at the German retreat from Soviet territory and the retaliation by traumatized Soviet soldiers and civilians on their former tormentors as Berlin falls and the Nazi high command commits suicide.

Death Throes of the Republic I : The wars which elevate Rome to superpower status also sow the seed for the downfall of its political system. Money, slaves, ambition, political stalemate and class warfare prove to be a toxic, bloody mix.

Death Throes of the Republic II : Disaster threatens the Republic, but the cure might be worse than the disease. "The Dan Carlin version" of this story continues with ambition-addict Marius dominating the story and Plutarch dominating the sources.

Death Throes of the Republic III : Rome's political violence expands in intensity from riots and assassinations to outright war as the hyper-ambitious generals Marius and Sulla tear the Republic and its constitution apart vying for power and glory.

Death Throes of the Republic IV : Sulla returns to Rome to show the Republic what REAL political violence looks like. Civil war and deadly partisan payback will pave the way for reforms pushed at sword point. Lots of heads will roll...literally.

Death Throes of the Republic V : The last great generation of the Roman Republic emerges from the historical mists. The dynamic between Caesar, Cato, Cicero, Crassus and Pompey forms the axis around which the rest of this tale revolves.

Death Throes of the Republic VI : In a massive finish to the "Dan Carlin version" of the fall of the Roman Republic, conspiracies, civil wars, beatniks of antiquity and a guy named Caesar figure prominently. Virtually everyone dies.

My favorite stuff is looking back to see how other empires have come in gone. Just brushing on a small surface...The Greeks consistently ignored the Germanic tribes as unimportant celts which was a major driving force to what propped up the Roman Empire. It makes me think who we are ignoring now *cough* South America & Russia

Really cool stuff about the Dark Ages and how it led to a rise in individual Euro-based powers. During the Dark Ages, people simply couldn't fix and understand many of the older Roman technology such as the aquaducts etc.

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I enjoyed his Hardcore History on the fall of the Roman Republic. I've been meaning to listen to more of his podcast but it's hard with a 5 year old in the car.

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I love ancient history.

Speaking of the fall of Rome, It all began with a man named Alaric, who is probably my favorite historical figure.

He was the son of a king whos people were 'assimilated' into the Roman empire during one of Rome's expantions in the late 300s AD. He, like all other "nonborn Romans' was forced to serve on the front lines of the Roman expansion and defense. He showed great military prowess, and rose quickly through the ranks and became low level general

At this time, there was an uprising in the province that he was born in, and he was commanded to lead his army to squash the rebellion of his own people. It ended up being a bloodbath, and after looking at the battlefeild after his forces decimated his homeland, he swore to himself that he would enact revenge against Rome when he had the chance.

Fast forward 25 years... He has risen to the very top of his Roman military command, being one of the Emperors top generals. In order to inspire loyalty, he is rewarded with a new legion of troops who happen to be be from his germanic tribe that he was ordered to wipe out 25 years before.

His new troops remembered him as the son of the king of they're people before they were enslaved, and promptly named him King after he told them of his promise of revenge. With these new troops that were loyal to him and his cause, he finally had the oppertunity that he had waited half of his life for.

At this time, the Romans were divided between the East and West Roman empires and were too busy with infighting themselves to properly defend the Roman capital, and he saw his oppertunity.

He quickly organized his troops in a move against the Empire in order to provide a new land for his people to live, free from the Romans. He marched his troops south down the Italian peninsula, and sacked Rome. This feat is not to be taken lightly, it was the first time in the history of Rome that it had ever been taken in a 1000 years...

In the end, he made a deal with the emperor that carved out a huge area of what is now Spain and France to be a new homeland for his people in exchange for leaving Rome, and ending the bloodshed. Those people became the Visigoths.

My favorite war story in ancient history. I left out most of the details because I have better things to do than type all day, but anyone who is interested in ancient history should google the name "Alaric", it will be a fantastic read.

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Listening to Thors Angels now.

Also his voice sounds very much like Colin Cowherds.

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