On Chimp War, Vol. Something or Other

A while ago our own Kenny Payne waxed philosophically about Chimp War.  ’Is war a uniquely human phenomenon?’, Ken asked. ‘I think not. Chimpanzees also wage war.’ Now Ken’s a theorist but I’m an empiricist. So I give you evidence:

Scientists, top men, have studied this clip and translated the chimp’s triumphal grunting. ‘Come on! Come on! Come and get it, baby! Come on! I don’t got all day! Come on! Come on! Come on you bastard! Come on, you too! Oh, you want some of this? Fuck you!’




8 thoughts on “On Chimp War, Vol. Something or Other

  1. Quintin says:

    Given this evidence, I wish to retract my previous reservations on the matter unreservedly, and thereby concede that chimps are indeed capable of waging war.

    • David Betz says:

      I’m glad that we’ve settled that, Quintin. You can’t argue with fact. A more salient question from this video: are West African human soldiers off their heads on whatever these guys are off their heads on capable of strategy?

    • Quintin says:

      A good question David, though I am of the opinion that we should not look a gift horse in the mouth (specifically a scientific one). Had it not been for the field research by these gentlemen, we would no doubt still have been arguing the chimp’s capacity for war-waging. Equally, we should recognise that opportunity knocks but once, and I, for one, am eagerly awaiting the outcome of their next research question: ‘can a chimp with an RPG knock out a T-55 tank?’, followed by ‘what will a chimp do with a case of plastique and a detonator?’

      On a (slightly) more serious note, I’ve extended my set of precursors for strategic thought to the following:

      a. A capacity for abstract thought – think monkey with a paint brush.
      b. A capacity for nth degree intentionality – think your favourite scene from the Princess Bride. Perhaps we could call this The Vizzini Principle?.
      c. A capacity for nth degree anticipation – sort of ‘what will happen if I give a creature, known for its mimicking ability, an assault rifle?’ Perhaps this could be known as the Dr Pepper Principle?

    • olaf says:

      btw, Chimps attack in groups (even Human beings) and they use sticks and stones as weapons. Chimps do ambush hikers and hunters.

    • Quintin says:

      Don’t worry Thom, David and I are merely having a bit of fun with strategy – not a great topic for humour, I’ll give you that… But then again, if Twentieth Century Fox can find humour in the matter, should it be beneath us to follow suit?

    • David Betz says:

      Ha ha, yes, I did notice that it was contrived (the 20th Century Fox research library label was a bit of a giveaway, unless Hollywood has started funding anthropological research while I wasn’t paying attention). That’s why I included three separate movie references in my post–though the last is a bit gnomic. that said, it’s still awesome.

  2. olaf says:

    Groups of soldiers (or militias) like to have pet talismans, often semi domesticated apes, usually chimpanzee (a bit like the Irish Guards with their hound). They would name it after a rival or neighbouring (ethnic) group. A group of Téké would call the chimp Béti for example. Then for fun ridicule it and chase the “enemy” away. Doesn’t always work though.

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