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quote:Roman Feodorovich von Ungern-Sternberg was an archetypal 'White' Russian extremist. Born in 1886, a Baltic German, he claimed descent from a long line of military men, including Attila the Hun. The Baron felt the pull of the east: the mountains, rolling steppes and icy wastes of Genghis Khan's stamping ground. He studied the tactics used by Mongol warlords and was fascinated by their courage and stamina. When his total of dead customers became too high for his addled brain to recall, he was struck with a revelation. He later compared this blast of insight with satori, the enlightenment experienced by Buddha. This noble divulgence was as follows: by slaying people he was doing them a favour. If they were unable to protect themselves, it meant they were feeble and living under poor Karma. By dying in a state of innocence, they improved their position on the rungs of the cosmos.
It dawned on Ungern-Sternberg that his tawdry victims were destined to be reborn as greater beings. He was thus the agency of their improvement, a holy man destined to aid all those who still clung to such material values as air. In the blink of an ill-set eye, the Baron became a convert to the eightfold-path, preaching respect for life with a bullet. In his newfound wisdom, he realised that he must interpret the scriptures in his own manner. For good measure, he dissolved a dose of apocalyptic Christianity into the brew, like a pinch of arsenic in a dish of butter-tea.