Repeating History?

A reader sent us this tidbit.

...I'm reading The Guns of August, Barbara Tuchman's history of the first month of WWI, and I run across this description of Tsar Nicholas:
The regime was ruled from the top by a sovereign who had but one idea of government -- to preserve intact the absolute monarchy bequeathed to him by his father -- and who, lacking the intellect, energy or training for his job, fell back on personal favorites, whim, simple mulishness, and other devices of the empty-headed autocrat.
She also writes that when a telegram was brought to him about the destruction of the Russian fleet at Tsushima in 1905, he stuffed the paper in his pocket and went on playing tennis.


Tuchman adds this lovely description:

"... the impression of imperturbability he conveyed was in reality apathy -- the indifference of a mind so shallow as to be all surface."

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