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Department
History
Course
HTST 489
Professor
John Ferris
Semester
Fall

Description
HTST489 October 7 th Mythology: Frequently an attempt to explain human beings, how the world works – involves trickster figures, often. Jack the Giant Slayer – uses intelligence and deception to overwhelm them. Common theme in myths. History – The Origins of Intelligence Number of different sources of historical accounts. 1. Surviving records of government discourse – negotiations, laws. Rare, usually, though there are thousands of examples from the ancient near east.Ancient near eastern diplomatic record shows that along with ceremonial diplomatic exchanges and trade, we can also see some references to the relationships between a dependent state and evidence of information gathering, reference to spies, or to idea that diplomatic documents may be intercepted. Reference to secrecy. Gathering information is considered the norm. Done by diplomats and traders. Used to just be geographically based information, for the most part, kind of thing a tourist could get today. Overwhelming means of collecting information is through spies or on the field of battle. Next to no communications intelligence. 2. Ancient legends/histories – between 1000 BCE to 700 BCE, start to find references to espionage. 1. i.e.Account of the old testament (Jewish testament) – references to alledged activities of Moses and the Jewish people after they flee captivity – historians are dubious as to its historical veracity. Oral accounts from events occurring between 1000 – 1200 BCE turned into permanent oral form and written down around 800 BCE.According to the old testament, Moses leads the Jewish people into the Sinia desert, and god declares that this is there land. “Every tribe [12] must choose one person, these people are to go and examine the land, the people, the resources, and then come back and the people of Israel can hear these 12 independent accounts.” Going on a reconnaissance mission. When they come back, 10 of the 12 are terrified of what they've seen- giants, big stone walls. Decide to lie. 10 of the officers say it's a rich land but too difficult to get to – other two are honest. People of Israel listen to the 10 people politicizing the intelligence and all believe it's too difficult to get to – God gets smitey on the 10 liars, and curses the current generation to wander the desert til death. Next generation – Joshua reports accurately on the Holy Land. Sends spies to scout the territory. Two enter Jericho and the city authorities are looking for them. Rahab the harlot houses them safely. Rahab agreees to hide them if they agree to put in a good word for her with God. Is adopted as a Jew after the city is taken. Treachery in the walls. Easiest way to take a walled city. Demi-mythologized accounts, not verifiable in the least, but by around 800-900 BCE, when these were being written down – intelligence, deception, political warfare, and politicization of information was part of the story. 2. Seige of Troy, the Ilyiad and the Oddyssey. Was a genuine city called Troy, was destroyed on a number of occasions – invaded by the “sea peoples”, significant in the politics of ancient near eastern world of whom we know very little. May be some type of greeks. Part of the Ilyiad are topics related to deception.Account of Oddysseus (also known as Ulysses) out to scout toward |Trojan lines. See a scout pass them by, decide to ambush the Trojan scount. Pretend to be Trojans, scout is captured, begs that they not torture him and offer him his life, tells them what he knows and then they kill him anyways.Accounts of Oddysseus framing a greek he doesn't like by having a letter sent from the Trojan king to the Greek, buried in his baggage, then frames the guy for being a traitor – letter is discovered, greek is butchered. Trojan horse is a clear example of deception. Can't take the walls, pretend to leave a giant horse filled with 20 different greeks, trojans take it into the city (Cassandra, daughter of the Trojan king speaks against bringing it in), Trojans get drunk, 20 greeks break out and open the gates. Greeks kill all the men and enslave the women and children. Greeks treat the trojans the same as they treat the greeks – regarded as noble enemy, and the terrible things that befall them are regarded with pity. What we see in this literary but perhaps slightly historical and mythological account, is intelligence deception being an important part of the plot. Can find in any culutre references to intelligence and deception of way people view the world – normal. Regarded normal for states as well. From period 600 BCE onward – number of cultures have surviving written, historical works, which allows us to see how intelligence operates. Dilemma with Chinese writing is it's clear there's an extremely sophisticated approa
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