Henry Kissinger Is Right There: The Queen Edition
Today, Queen Elizabeth II, the 96-year-old ceremonial head of a rapidly failing entity known as “the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland,” passed away after 70 years on the throne. The queen, also known as “Liz” or “Her Majesty,” was the longest-reigning monarch in British history, a feat that may not be matched anytime soon because the UK will probably break up or fall into the sea or something in the next couple of decades.
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The Queen began her historic tenure in 1952, when Britain was a wounded, though still vast, colonial force, dogged by years of austerity and undergoing an existential crisis in the wake of the brutalities of World War II and the sudden loss of its superpower status. She died when Britain was a wounded, diminished, dilapidated, deeply weird nation, dogged by years of austerity and undergoing an existential crisis in the wake of the brutalities of the 21st century and the continued loss of its superpower status.
In between, Elizabeth enjoyed a decades-long marriage to her racist husband, Philip, and raised several strange and damaged children, almost all of whom embarrassed themselves in one way or another and riveted the world with their tawdry behavior. Her widely beloved son, Prince Charles, succeeds her as monarch; he will undoubtedly give the UK the same kind of love, care, and fidelity that he gave Princess Diana.
Elizabeth’s pedophile son, Prince Andrew, will remain a mere prince, though he can at least comfort himself with the fact that he was always her favorite, even with the pedophile stuff.
Apart from her children, the Queen had many cherished treasures, such as her corgis, her billion-dollar property portfolio, and the many British swans she owned by default for some reason.
The Queen ruled during the tenure of 15 different prime ministers. Her first was bad Tory Winston Churchill. Her last was bad Tory Liz Truss, whom the Queen formally welcomed to her post just a few days ago. It is not officially known whether the act of having to meet Liz Truss and offer her a job was the thing that tipped the Queen into death.
During her lifetime, Elizabeth met a who’s who of important world figures, from John F. Kennedy to Paddington Bear. She also became famous for giving British thespians an easy way to get acting awards.
Despite the tumult she presided over, the Queen managed to remain a broadly popular figure, due in part to her lifelong habit of saying virtually nothing of interest from one year to the next, and the fact that she persuaded successive governments to help her hide some of the more out-there aspects of her position. She was seen as an unchanging, steady figure in a constantly roiling era, and a symbolic link to an earlier time, one in which Britain sat astride the global order, went to war with the Nazis (except the ones in the royal family), and had a pleasant couple of centuries viciously subjugating hundreds of millions of people around the world.
A long-planned, meticulous, and very lengthy period of mourning will now commence. It will no doubt be dignified, as the British people developed a healthy and sensible relationship with their monarch during her unprecedented reign.
So what does this show us? Among other things, it shows us that, when you are nearly 100 years old and have cheerfully represented one of the most villainous, blood-soaked countries in world history for decades, you are allowed to pack it in and shuffle off the stage. Just something to think about for some people.
In unrelated news, 99-year-old war criminal Henry Kissinger is, like, RIGHT THERE.
This has been “Henry Kissinger Is Right There.”