Beware international affairs the next five months, a dangerous period for America.
Deterrence is a nation’s ability to discourage aggressors by instilling in them a credible fear of punishment far greater than any perceived gain that could be achieved by an attack.
Deterrence is quite different from deference, which is a courteous accommodation to the will of another, often one deemed superior.
Deterrence is ultimately enhanced by the possession of overwhelming military force, but it is unfortunately not thereby ensured.
France, the Low Countries, and the British expeditionary force had a combined larger army, more tanks and comparable air forces, when Germany nevertheless attacked in surprise fashion and destroyed them in six weeks in May and June 1940. What the Allies lacked were not the guns and soldiers but the credibility that they would use them with dispatch, skill, and determination.
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