6 The Warrior Archetype

Episode Six: “Come And Take Them”

2500 years ago, the Persian king Xerxes, while invading Greece with an army of two million men (according to Herodotus), confronted the defending Greeks, led by 300 Spartan warriors, at a narrow pass called Thermopylae.

Xerxes demanded that the Spartans lay down their arms.

If you travel to Thermopylae today, you’ll see a great statue of the Spartan king Leonidas, who commanded the defenders on that day.

On the statue are only two words:

Molon Labe—”Come and take them”—Leonidas’ answer to the Persian invader’s demand.

Subscribe here for the full series, or watch previous episodes here

Subscribe here for the full series, or watch previous episodes here


  1. Todd on September 3, 2020 at 6:40 am

    Thanks for doing this series. Great stuff!

  2. Andrew+Lubin on September 3, 2020 at 6:50 am

    The concept of “Honor – Courage – Commitment” is as true today as it was in 383 BC as the fights at Thermoplyae, Tarawa, Iwo Jima, and Fallujah demonstrate. It’s this combination of small unit leadership and the warrior-brothers who understand ‘shared sacrifice’ brings enduring honor those who fought.

    But today? Drone Operators, sitting is an air-conditioned office 10,000 miles from the battlefield demand a Combat Action Medal, and going un-masked is a perverted form of macho pride as responsibility is a concept best passed to others? There is little valor today and those dozens of thousands of Americans who volunteered on Dec 8, 1941 would not recognize the society some 410,000 of them died to save. While not everyone is born to be a warrior, there’s no dishonor in being a medic, logistics guy, Admin, or supporting them from the homefront. That’s shared sacrifice; 2020-style.

  3. Joe Jansen on September 3, 2020 at 6:50 am

    With the novel built around this epic battle, it’s easy to see why so many USMC commandants have selected “Gates of Fire” for inclusion on their Commandant’s Professional Reading Lists over the years. I’ve gifted many copies to young friends heading off to serve.

    Well done on the video.

  4. James Gant on September 3, 2020 at 9:41 am

    ‘Molon Lobe’…That is all – that is it.
    It is a mentality.
    Keep em coming – great work.

  5. Caron Harris on September 3, 2020 at 10:12 am

    I love this series, but this episode in particular was excellent. Thank you!

  6. Doug Bell on September 3, 2020 at 10:49 am

    Thanks, Steve, I really enjoyed this.

  7. Carl Blackburn on September 3, 2020 at 4:24 pm

    When General Santa Ana demanded that the citizens of Gonzalez, Texas turn over their canon, they replied “Come and Take It” a cry that was often repeated in the Texas war for independence in 1836.

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