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May 11, 2004

What will the future bring?

A Victor Davis Hanson Q&A:

Q: Recent visits to the Hadrian and Antonine Walls brought to mind the strategic challenge of dealing with foes whose destructive capacities far outweigh their productivity or the value of their territory. Rome's capacity to effectively destroy (averaged over centuries) was not all that much greater than its Caledonian adversaries. Might we see a return to firmer, fiercer frontiers as the modern destructive abilities of individuals climb dramatically (cf. Yale economist Martin Shubik's "socioeconomics of death" curve) and effective broad defensive capacity dwindles? The historical parallels seem sobering.

Hanson: Yes, we are faced with a new parasitism that will require new vigilance against those who both hate and desire the West, who wish to live here and then kill us for the contrary emotions we inspire; or who wish our imported weapons to destroy us, or who seek to interpret our liberality as vulnerability if not decadence. We are in for a pretty wild ride, and let us hope that our 10-12 year olds who will be called to within a decade to win this long war prove to be a different generation than my own that pretty much created the present mess.

Posted by Old Benjamin at 09:25 AM | Permalink


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