ANTIPODEAN TEUTONICA. The Chilean military received a great deal of technical assistance from the Prussians. That assistance included the parade manuals, as demonstrated on Navy Day. The video is of the start of the 21 May 2008 parade. It looks like a miserable late fall day. Think November in the Baltics. The day is also Opening Day for Parliament, and President Michelle Bachelet has a State of the Union address to deliver later. The music is Gottfried Sontag's Nibelungen March, the march of Chile's Naval Academy.

Chile is not the only case of an emerging power preserving military traditions abandoned at home. A colleague told me about Indian military ceremonies that induce nostalgia in Britishers. Here's a Chilean army review from 1992, to Preussens Gloria.

Look closely and you'll see the band's Turkish Crescent, as Frederick the Great intended.

The comment threads that accompany these videos make for interesting reading, in Spanish, German, and English. Some people get worked up about military units that look like something out of Triumph des Willens and some people like to see the Prussian tradition. I'll leave that to the reader. There's material in the second video that a viewer could interpret either way.

Chile will be celebrating the bicentennial of its declaration of independence from Spain next year. The independence treaty came a few years later, and the country later had a civil war.

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