With the end of the NSO curb-stomp we have seen the return of the 'beer review' surrender term -- a constant in the New Hegemony's arsenal which has hitherto slipped under the radar of political scrutiny. So why is it there? What is its function?
The first response to these questions is that the beer review is 'just a bit of fun', and indeed, this is precisely what it's meant to portray. It allows a group to spend two weeks curb-stomping an alliance down to one third of its previous strength for no justifiable reason, only to leave the sickly-sweet scent of 'a bit of fun' in the nostrils of observers. These observers, of course, quickly forget the two week long curb-stomp and are left with the impression that the attack wasn't so bad after all -- and then what's left but to curse the victim if they dare to complain about the whole series of events.
In this manner it is a clever strategy, used to cover up the political realities of the attack. That is, the reality that a whole alliance and over one hundred and fifty individual nations will now have to spend months or perhaps even years rebuilding the wanton destruction that was wrought upon them without cause. The reality that the power structure holds such severe inequities that it allowed, with gusto, a dozen heavily backed alliances to descend against a single competitor. The reality that the attack was so blatant in its character as a hegemonic power-play that even members of the attacking alliances had to struggle to justify it on those grounds, contrary to the stated casus belli.
But there is a second, darker reason for the beer review -- to degrade the defeated alliance. It is of little surprise that this particular weapon has been utilised against a community like the NSO, which takes a serious, proud and independent approach to politics. Degradation is not something which exists in the abstract, but rather it is something which is relative to the sensibilities of the individual, and so in order to degrade someone you seek an antithetical activity and force them to act upon it by threat of force. In this process you remove their independence and dignity for all the world to see, demonstrating your strength and their weakness -- and in this case their cultural inferiority as they are forced to bow to the culture of the dominant power. All that the defeated alliance can offer as means of a defence to this degradation is the public acceptance that this was indeed 'fun', therefore perpetuating the initial point of the exorcize
The beer review thus has an important dual role in maintaining the current power structure, both by coating its blows in a velvet glove, and by weakening the mental strength and identity of its enemies. At the flip of a switch it changes the popular discourse from one of wanton destruction to one of good natured tomfoolery, where the victim should be thanking and in debt to the aggressor. And at the flip of a switch it turns military defiance into cultural and personal subjection. Far from being 'a bit of fun', it should be seen for what it is: a powerful weapon in the toolbox of imperialism.