Commander reflects on the art of war

Take note – story published 6 years ago

When he's not planning a pincer movement or checking everyone has their berets on straight, there's nothing Latvia's Chief of Defense likes more than a nice bit of Abstract Expressionism.

This is the revelation contained in the latest promotional film from NATO, which sees Lieutenant General Leonīds Kalniņš marching briskly around the marbled halls of the Latvian National Art Museum in search of inspiration.

"Among graphic arts I like abstractionism, where you can see a deep philosophical meaning," muses the grizzled veteran, adding "It helps me every day to take decisions to build up our armed forces."

As art criticism, such a response is refreshingly original and considerably more direct than the usual flim-flam about the ephemeral nature of mortality etcetera one usual encounters among the quality art crowd.

While a curious plinky-plonky soundtrack plays somewhat redundantly in the backround, Lt. Gen. Kalniņš then moves out of the academy and onto the parade ground to talk about NATO's enhanced Forward Presence battalion, though sadly without reference to Chagall and Kandinsky.

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