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You can't win all wars

Reader comment on item: Israel Shuns Victory

Submitted by Bruce Boyman (United States), Mar 28, 2006 at 15:31

There are wars on crime, drugs, illiteracy... which will never be "won." You can only hope to limit the damage and maximize your gains.

In biblical times, wars like the current Arab-Israeli dispute were ended cold and practical with the annhilation, exiling, or enslavement of the opponent. WWll Japan fought to the home islands, Germany to downtown Berlin. It took that level of mauling for them to eschew their militarist ways.

While Israel currently faces these very dangers, I don't see Israel doing this to it's enemies as the progressive, humanist society it is at the current scale of conflict. The world would not tolerate it either. Israel rejected the Baruch Goldstein approach.

I have yet to hear how to change the determined, intractible, hostile attitudes of unreasonable people without WWll-style devastation. Current low-scale events are terrible, but not existential dangers. Only WMD-scale threats or events, like a nuclear-active Iran or Korea, elevate severe pre-emption or overwhelming retaliation (MAD) to probabilty.
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