The History of Western War

Discussion in 'Military' started by AdlerianThinker, Dec 21, 2009.

  1. AdlerianThinker
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    AdlerianThinker Member

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    An interesting piece by Victor Davis Hanson
    https://www.hillsdale.edu/news/imprimis/archive/issue.asp?year=2009&month=11

    Mr. Hanson describes what Western War is, and does a good job describing, it, IMO.

    He also describes why we are struggling with it right now.

    He ends the essay with this, "We who created the Western way of war are very reluctant to resort to it due to post-modern cynicism, while those who didn't create it are very eager to apply it due to pre-modern zealotry."

    Where is he right, and where is he wrong?
     
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    Last edited: Dec 21, 2009
  2. AllieBaba
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    AllieBaba BANNED

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    Page can't be found.
     
  3. AdlerianThinker
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  4. AdlerianThinker
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    AdlerianThinker Member

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    Seems to be fixed.
     
  5. JW Frogen
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    That is a very nice quote.

    I love Hanson, not only is he a hard headed historical realist but he is a very good writer as well, as the quote reveals.

    He is America's Thucydides.

    Where as Gore Vidal is America’s Tacitus.

    I would love to see the two nude jello wrestle but only at an Ivy League University for decorum’s sake.
     
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  6. Sunni Man
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    Sunni Man Diamond Member

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    That was a good read and very thought provoking.
     
  7. Toronado3800
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    I agree. This is a cultural statement as oddly enough even our volunteer military largely wants to get in and out. Must be a cultural thing.

    I don't know if the statement is entirely factual bu tis a valid point that Westerners kill each other at the drop of a hat.

    The point of this paragraph was the purchasing of modern technology with oil funds thus leveling the battlefield somewhat. This should be read to everyone considering purchasing a low fuel economy car.

    Its an interesting read for sure.
     
  8. eagleseven
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    eagleseven Quod Erat Demonstrandum

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    I would argue that this desire to end warfare in decisive battles developed as European society evolved away from an honor society.

    In the European honor society of the Middle Ages, it was common for families to fight for generations. During this same period, we saw events like the 100-years war. During the Renaissance, as feudal and familial power was replaced by the modern nation-state, these protracted conflicts were abandoned in favor of short, limited warfare. This tradition continues to this day.

    Many non-Western peoples still maintain an honor society, where bloodfeuds are the norm. In Afghanistan, a land where dishonor deserves death and feuds can last for generations, the concept of a continual state of warfare is natural.

    If Britain, France, Germany, and Spain were united as one Empire at any point after 1400, they would've successfully conquered the entire world.

    This is why I am so appreciative of those who do serve...because it is a fool's job. To be a US Marine, you have to either truly love your country, or truly love to kill. Perhaps both.
     
  9. JW Frogen
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    JW Frogen Gold Member

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    The Marines are in it for the tatoos, the Navy for the booze.
     
  10. JW Frogen
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    JW Frogen Gold Member

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    Indeed, good point, honour societies believe war to be a game, war is not a game. (Al Qeada will fight for decades as they see war as honour and a religious game.)

    Great armies defeat an enemy as quickly as they can. That is the job of a great army, and it is also more merciful to the civilian population long term.

    Prolonged war is a scourge to both the concept of honour and reason, a danger to civilisation.

    Though it may be nessisary if one is fighting an honour enemy.
     
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    Last edited: Dec 22, 2009

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