Commitment

Professor Hanson asks Bomb or occupy — or neither? and says “Blowing things up and going home allows trouble to reignite.”

“Wars usually end only when the defeated aggressor thinks it would be futile to resume the conflict. Lasting peace follows if the loser is then forced to change its political system into something other than what it was.

“Republican Rome learned that bitter lesson through three conflicts with Carthage before ensuring that there was not going to be a fourth Punic War.”

There are plenty of examples to compare and contrast. Where the U.S. upheld its commitment after victory in Germany, Japan, the Balkans, and Korea and where it did not as in Vietnam and Iraq. Will we ever learn?

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