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No need to pull your punches in the Middle East

Reader comment on item: How Israel Can Win

Submitted by Warty (Australia), Sep 10, 2016 at 23:27

You couldn't be more right, Daniel. This could have been all over during the 1967 war, or at the conclusion of the Yom Kipur conflict, but American intervention ensured the covering of the iron fist.

The historian Adam Tooze, attributes this insane intervention to Woodrow Wilson's 'peace without victory' policy, which he devised, towards the end of WWI as an attempt to put the Old World powers in their 'place'. His stance was an entirely patronizing one, of a President deeply influenced by the American Civil War, and who had come to realize the enormous wealth and power of his own country, and was prepared to do what he could to control a bunch of unruly schoolboys (Britain, France, Russia, Germany etc). It was an entirely unjustified 'holier than thou' approach (if one can go by the extraordinary corruption and brutality of the turn of the century New York, with its Tammany Hall, corrupt union officials and politicians etc. . It was an ultimately successful attempt to transform the previously isolationist America into a world policeman.

America was to sink back into isolationism after Wilson's failure to fully stamp his authority on the Versailles Peace Conference, at the end of WWI, only to reemerge towards the end of WWII. Ever since, the Peace without victory' concept has been fully operational.
Prior to this well-meaning, but counterproductive policy, states /countries ironed out their differences on the battle field, and the established principle 'to the victors the spoils' operated without challenge. If you think of it, the shape of Europe and of Britain and China (to mention a few) are the way they are because of the age-old notion of 'to the victor the spoils'.

War is a thoroughly unpleasant phenomenon, but you don't muddy the water by considering what is fair, with regards to the enemy: you defeat him, pure and simple.

The Vietnam War was lost, not because of the effectiveness of the Viet Cong, or the North Vietnamese propaganda, but because the American public were allowed to watch the war, courtesy of the MSM, in their own lounge rooms, or over the breakfast table. The MSM was far more effective than the North Vietnamese propaganda. Because of the sheer weight of American fire power sympathy lay with the underdog. The Mai Lai massacre horrified, but the Viet Cong were doing worse on a weekly basis and managed to so intimidate South Vietnamese villages, the Americans were unable to successfully gain the support of the very people they were attempting to liberate. Peace without victory certainly didn't, quite sensibly, apply to the Viet Cong: they knew how to 'win over' the people.

The Middle East is no different: you don't pussy foot around with an enemy which wishes your annihilation: you use the same tactics to defeat him, and then some more.

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