October 18, 2010


Your humble correspondent is working through Max Boot's The Savage Wars of Peace: Small Wars and the Rise of American Power. The money sound bite thus far:

To simply somewhat, the nineteenth-century navy may be described as aristocratic officers spoiling for a fight, leading equally combative, often tipsy enlisted men who were on the fringes of society and, to get to the essence of the matter, would not be missed overmuch if a few died in action. Such men where constantly dispatched by the navy to the far corners of the globe to deal with chaotic situations in politically unstable lands populated by people with little understanding of Western notions such as private property and contracts. Far from home, with no way of communicating in less than a few months' time with their superiors back in Washington, they had amost complete autonomy of action. Is it any wonder, then, that Americans became embroiled in so many small war abroad? The only wonder, really, is that there were not more.

Posted by LMC at October 18, 2010 09:12 PM | TrackBack
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