Headline, October 27 2023/ ''' WARS -CROSSWORD- WAKE '''

''' WARS 


 WAKE '''

THE WORLD STUDENTS SOCIETY thanks most sincerely and profoundly Professor Emeritus Avi Shlaim, St Anthony's College, Oxford University and esteemed Mr. Karan Thapar -'' The Wire ''  .......

For bringing and explaining ''History and Truth'' on the '' Palestine-Israel '' conflict to the world and to students of the entire world. We admire you both most respectfully and thank you both for this splendid revealing tutorial.

Michael Mann dismisses the widespread notion - popularized by the retired U.S. Army trainer Dave Grossman - that many soldiers chose not to fight in earlier conflicts, such as the American Civil War, because they were paralyzed by moral qualms.

The prevalence of jammed and discarded weapons in the battlefield likely had more to do with the sheer chaos of shoving a bullet into the muzzle of a gun as black smoke descended all around you.

Many humans were locked onto a battlefield and handed a weapon, hesitate to inflict harm. In other words, humanity is not veering to or from peace. Which raises once again, Mann's question : Why not?

ON THE WORLD STUDENTS SOCIETY : THE STUDENTS of the entire world have taken a giant leap for immortality, - in very, very troubled times, to go about striving for peace, in selfless service to Mankind.

THEY NEED TO KNOW WHAT TO AVOID that might otherwise lead to war.

Mann is honest enough to report that causes of war vary widely, depending on differing ''ecologies, class and ethnicity, domestic politics, ideologies and emotions'' and individual leaders' '' competences and desires.''

2 Early on in the book, he paraphrases the French philosopher and historian Raymond Aron as saying, '' A general theory of war is impossible'' - then Mann adds, '' But I will have a shot at one.''  

However, 464 pages later, Mann admits that the vast range in types of war '' may defeat any simple theory of causes, as Raymond Aron noted.''

In the end, Mann comes up with three broad causes of war : ''greed, status-honor-glory and the enjoyment of domination.'' This is too simple, not only as an explanation of the world, but as a summary of his own, much more complex analyses.

He frequently dismisses the idea of ''national interest'' as a rationalization devised by ''coteries of rulers and their advisors.''

There is something to this, foreign policy being the least democratic of political activities. But does he really mean that national interests have no objective basis?

At one point, amid a [ largely justifiable ] tirade against the pious rhetoric sanctifying U.S. foreign policy, he writes, '' Not even the Romans had such pretensions - though they did share the American pretext for war that intervening abroad was merely defending one's allies.''

Again, there's something to this, but tell it to the French and British, who emerged free and intact from the Nazi onslaught because America treated them as allies.

Or to the Czechs, Poles and Balts, who begged to become allies within NATO after the Soviet Union's collapse.

Or to the Ukrainians, whose desperation to join the alliance is hardly a sign of submissiveness. [ Mann does view World War II as '' a rare just war '' and denounces Putin's war on Ukraine as a contemptible revival of imperial invasion.]

He treads on shakier ground still when offering policy prescriptions. He advocates '' not isolationism but peaceful interventionism,'' noting that Washington could ''learn a lesson from Imperial China'' by paying tributes to barbarians not to attack them.''

He claims that ''cash can usually buy off the chances of war,'' observing that the United States has given Egypt some $70 billion in aid to make peace with Israel, but spent $ 3.5 trillion to wage war in Afghanistan and Iraq.

The difference, though, is that Anwar-el-Sadat and his successors in Cairo wanted to make peace and align with the West; the Taliban did not. This is one of several passages where Mann the sociologist should have consulted a political scientist.

Still, '' On Wars '' is an enlightening haul for much of its journey and a brisk read too, surprisingly so far its density. Mann likens the ruling class balance-of-power games in ancient China and medieval Europe to ''mafia like protection rackets.''

Cataloging the savagery of the Catholic-Protestant wars in the 16th and 17th centuries, he writes, ''ISIS executions today pale by comparison,'' noting that, for early modern Christian warriors, decapitation was the ''swiftest and kindest from of execution, reserved for aristocrats or those to whom the king granted leniency.''

Mann's missteps stem mainly from the fact that his mission - to spin a formula for peace from a general theory of war - was simply impossible.

With respectful dedication to the Students, Professors and Teachers of the world and then Mankind.  See You all prepare for Great Global Elections on The World Students Society : wssciw.blogspot.com and Twitter X- !E-WOW! The Ecosystem 2011 :

Good Night and God Bless

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