Wednesday, March 12, 2003
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The costs of containment
I've had discussions with numerous anti-war faculty on campus here. They inevitably get uncomfortable when I mention that starting a war now would probably save more lives than continued containment.
I understand this discomfort. After all, war is the most violent option in world politics. Pacifists wish to put a normative taboo on military action, as a way of constraining states. The mere suggestion that a quick war is superior to a long siege (which is what the containment of Iraq would mean) cuts at the core assumption of pacifists.
Amen. [Er, doesn't Mead exaggerate the number of deaths in Iraq that can be attributed to sanctions?--ed. Yes -- see Matt Welch and Stephen Green for the details -- but even a conservative estimate supports his point].
(FULL DISCLOSURE: Charles is a departmental colleague of mine. He also has an excellent web site for those generally interested in international relations)posted by Dan on 03.12.03 at 03:12 PM