“The logic of war seems to be if the belligerent can fight, he will fight. That leaders will not surrender until surrender is academic. How is a national leader to explain the sacrifice of so much for nothing?” – Thomas Powers (author and intelligence expert from the US).
We sent a Q&A to Anthony Timmons to ask about his Edinbuirgh show.
“The show is called War! – and is a farewell to your arms! It’s a declaration of war on the audience, on the arms race. A counter to a year of WW1 propagandizing into a new Iraq war. And to prove that I can do stand up for a full hour”
Why did you choose to perform as part of Laughing Horse?
“No common sense whatsoever! No really it is a great honour to be working with Free Festival and places me, in the minds of the public and people in the business as a real comedian whatever that is.”
Why did you get into performing comedy and how did you get started?
“I’m an activist; I speak all over Europe, to big crowds. If you can motivate people with my American accent who are in resistance, a group of drunks at 10:30 at night is easy!
“I have a lot of friends in the stand-up comedy business, which made doing comedy a natural segue, at least a real possibility. I came to Europe – UK specifically – originally to work with Bob Crow in Labour organising and I speak on subjects like Chelsea Manning.”
Tell us your best, worst experiences as a comedian.
“I’ve had nothing but good experiences! Even the bad experiences are learning curves. I don’t believe in bombing; If the crowd wants to bomb, that’s down to them. I’m not here to tickle each person in the crowd individually.
“Conversely, I’m also a believer that it’s down to the comic to make the crowd shine, not the other way around.”
If you were curating a stand up show for television, who would be your guests?
“I would have Ben Griffin, former SAS and now war resister, Lee Camp who is also a friend, and since this is an imaginary show I’d invite Tony Benn.
“The stand-up would be ME! …Of course.”
The introduction to this piece originally by Thomas Powers was featured on a track called WAR! by Frankie Goes to Hollywood, from the album, Welcome to the Pleasuredome (1984).