17. “Apologizing for our past sins may reveal character and for a time lessen anti-Americanism abroad, but if it is done without acknowledging that the sins of America are the sins of mankind, and that our remedies are so often exceptional, then it only earns transitory applause – and a more lasting contempt that we ourselves do not believe in the values we profess.”
20. “Military history reminds us that those who died on behalf of democratic freedom to stop totalitarian killing were a different sort than totalitarians who died fighting against it to perpetuate killing. The sacrifice of the former meant that generations yet born might have a greater likelihood of opportunity, security, and freedom; the latter fought for a cause that would have increased the suffering of future generations.”
22. “The United States, being a strong and wealthy society, and with unrivaled global influence, invites envy. The success of its restless culture of freedom, constitutional democracy, self-critique, secular rationalism, and open markets provokes the resentment of both weaker and less-secure theocracy and autocracy alike.”
23. “In emblematic fashion, America stands as a protector of the global system of market capitalism and constitutional government, and of the often reckless modernist culture that threatens so much of tribal and indigenous custom and protocols. That we are therefore often to be hated by the authoritarian, the statist, and the tribalist – and periodically to be challenged by those who want to diminish our power, riches, or influence – is regrettable but nevertheless conceded.”
31. “Military history is just as often the tangential story of an appeasement that fails to head off warmongering as it is of an aggressive chest-thumping that prompts conflict. The destructive military careers of Alexander the Great, Caesar, Napoleon, and Hitler all would have ended earlier had any of their numerous enemies united when the odds favored them, had any listened to a Demosthenes, a Cato the Younger, or a Churchill.”
34. “Given the Western ability to produce deadly weapons, its propensity to create cheap, plentiful goods, and its tradition of seeing war in pragmatic rather than ritual terms as a mechanism to advance political ends, it is no surprise that Mesoamericans, African tribes, and native North Americans all joined European forces to help kill off Aztecs, Zulus, and Lakotas.”
46. “To conclude wars decisively and achieve prewar aims, the victor must defeat, and often even humiliate militarily, an enemy and force the loser to abandon prewar behavior before offering a magnanimous peace. “Humiliate,” here, does not mean to gratuitously insult or ridicule a prostrate enemy but rather to show him that the wages of his unprovoked aggression are the end of his ability to make war on others.”
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