The usurping Hell government likes to claim in its propaganda leaflets (which, happily, Rogsylvanian orcs can’t read) that orcs in our country are “oppressed” by alien beings. Apart from the question of how beings that have dwelt in Arda since the beginning can be classed as aliens, this disinformation ploy runs into some serious problems. For one thing, doesn’t the fact that they’re ruled by a handkerchief suggest that Hellish orcs don’t have much capacity for self-government? More importantly, the Hell claim shows a grave misapprehension of the actual condition of the condition of Rogsylvanian orcs, as is clearly shown in the following interview (troll correspondent Ológg Lugacs questions typical uruk sergeant Mauhúrsky).

OL: Do the Great Ones treat you well, minion-national?

M: Yes, master. When another uruk bullied me and called me four-eyes, one of the Great Ones burnt him. Another spared my life and only whipped me for six hours when I undercooked his human-ghoulash. I’ve seen orcs die horribly for less.

OL: Are you paid well?

M: What does “paid” mean, master?

OL: Do they give you good things?

M: Yes, master. The Great Ones toss us left-overs when we do a good job of building them an altar in the corvée. And when the troll overseer liked my wife’s dancing, he gave her a bone-necklace and invited her to semi-voluntary sexual intercourse. And the Great Ones not only gave her another necklace, but also healed her of her burns afterwards. But they didn’t invite her to semi-voluntary intercourse.

OL: I should think not. The Great Ones are above such petty concerns.

M: Indeed, master.

OL: May their flames shine upon us.

M: And not burn us in their wrath.

OL: Do you lead a good life?

M: Aye, master. I enjoy toiling for my betters. Mining is my favourite activity. The Great Ones give us free vacations to the mines and allow us to work there for years on end. They enjoy watching us do folk dances and sing folk-songs about how great they are, and they graciously accept our tribute of rare human, even if they sometimes wrinkle their noses at it a bit.

OL: The Hell orcs claim that Rogsylvanian orcs are “oppressed.” Do you agree?

M: I dinna ken what that means, master.

OL: Just say no, then.

M: No.

OL: What is your impression of Hell?

M: I’ve never been. But I watched a sitcom about it put on by some of the Orkschlumm youth what had nothing better to do. It’s called “The Industhry Hellbillies.” The scenery looked lame, compared with the … um ….

OL: … beautiful volcanic and resplendent mine-scenery of Rogsylvania, where, as the poet Arsonius writ, “the Orcs, happy in their toil, and the restless Snaga-hai, are busy, now on the volcanic ash-heap, now in the dankling mines, exclaiming shouts of boisterous rivalry. There the wayfarer who bustles on the way to destroy the Ring, and there the barge-troll floating by on the flame-river, shout their rude jokes at the loitering human-butchers.”

M: Yes, master. Anyway, Hell looked like a large cardboard box laced with asbestos, and the orcs in the sitcom seemed very stupid, and my gaffer says they don’t wear humanhosen.

OL: Apart from the beautiful scenery sung by Arsonius, what is the single greatest advantage of Rogsylvania for orcs?

M: I forget what I was supposed to say.

OL: Spiritual life, you fool.

M: Oh, right. We have a deep spiritual life because the Great Ones dwell among us. Hell orcs don’t have that nourishment and have to bow down before a handkerchief instead. How humiliating.

[Note: Mauhúrsky’s lines have been lightly edited to improve vocabulary, grammar, and content, in accord with the Balrog Aesthetics Department and the Correct Opinion Praetoriate.