Best Defense

What is it about 12 men?

I was reading a book about American Indian military formations and saw this:

Screen Shot 2015-11-11 at 10.32.53 AM

 

I was reading a book about American Indian military formations and saw this: “The squaw sent as a messenger by Flores described the method of the Apaches in making a raid . . . . She said that all of the five chiefs would assemble and furnish about twelve men each for the raid.”

Twelve men. They make up a jury. They make up (in some places) a squad of soldiers. My Mormon ancestors had a “Quorum of the Twelve.” (A Jewish minyan needs 10, I believe.) And don’t forget the Twelve Imams of Shia Islam. Or the Apostles.

Photo credit: MGM Studios/Wikimedia Commons

 

Thomas E. Ricks covered the U.S. military from 1991 to 2008 for the Wall Street Journal and then the Washington Post. He can be reached at ricksblogcomment@gmail.com. Twitter: @tomricks1
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