Victor Davis Hanson Private Papers

Tag Archives: Saddam Hussein

The Hitler Model

Why do weak nations like Russia provoke stronger ones like the United States?

by Victor Davis Hanson // Defining Ideas 

An ascendant Vladimir Putin is dismantling the Ukraine and absorbing its eastern territory in the Crimea. President Obama is fighting back against critics that his administration serially projected weakness, and thereby lost the ability to deter rogue

World Economic Forum

World Economic Forum

regimes. Obama, of course, rejects the notion that his own mixed signals have emboldened Putin to try something stupid that he might otherwise not have. After all, in terms of planes, ships, soldiers, nuclear strength, and economic clout, Putin must concede that he has only a fraction of the strength of what is at the disposal of the United States.

In the recriminations that have followed Putin’s daring intervention, Team Obama has also assured the international community that Putin is committing strategic suicide, given the gap between his ambitions of expanding the Russian Federation by threats of force and intimidation, and the rather limited means to do so at his disposal. Perhaps Putin is pandering to Russian public opinion or simply delusional in his wildly wrong calculations of all the bad things that may befall him.

Do any of those rationalizations matter—given that Putin, in fact, did intervene, plans to stay in the eastern Ukraine, and has put other former member states of the former Soviet Union on implicit notice that their future behavior may determine whether they too are similarly absorbed?

History is replete with examples of demonstrably weaker states invading or intervening in other countries that could in theory or in time bring to their defense far greater resources. On September 1, 1939, Hitler was both militarily and economically weaker than France and Britain combined. So what? That fact certainly did not stop the Wehrmacht over the next eight months from invading, defeating, and occupying seven countries in a row.

Hitler was far weaker than the Soviet Union. Still, he foolishly destroyed his non-aggression pact with Stalin to invade Russia on June 22, 1941. Next, Nazi Germany, when bogged down outside Moscow and having suffered almost a million casualties in the first six months of Operation Barbarossa, certainly was weaker than the United States, when Hitler idiotically declared war on America on December 11, 1941. Read more →

Syrian Surrealities

by Victor Davis Hanson // NRO’s The Corner

Once again we are trying to rally the American people about the dangers of purported WMD use; this time around, the Syrians may be doing to their own what Saddam Hussein most certainly did to the Kurds.  Read more →

Count Me Out on Syria

by Victor Davis Hanson

PJ Media

There are good reasons to go into Syria, but far better ones to stay out [1]. Read more →

Iraq–Agony, Ordeal, and Recovery

by Victor Davis Hanson

PJ Media

I. The Case for Invasion

Wise

The Bush administration built a broad domestic coalition and an adequate foreign alliance (more inclusive than the UN-sanctioned effort against North Korea in 1950). Read more →

Why Did We Invade Iraq?

by Victor Davis Hanson

National Review Online

On the tenth anniversary of the invasion of Iraq, the back-and-forth recriminations continue, but in all the “not me” defenses, we have forgotten, over the ensuing decade, the climate of 2003 and why we invaded in the first place. The war was predicated on six suppositions. Read more →

Who Will Bell America?

by Victor Davis Hanson

National Review Online

Remember the medieval fable about the mice that wanted their dangerous enemy, the cat, belled, but each preferred not to be the one to attempt the dangerous deed? Read more →

The Muddle East

by Victor Davis Hanson

National Review Online

No one has any idea what the Middle East will look like next year, much less in five years — especially the revolutionary players themselves. Read more →

Iraqi Irony

by Victor Davis Hanson

Tribune Media Services

Amid all the stories about the ongoing violence in Syria, the most disturbing is the possibility that President Bashar Assad could either deploy the arsenal of chemical and biological weapons that his government claims it has, or provide it to terrorists. Read more →

The Bad/Good Idea of Removing Assad

by Victor Davis Hanson

Tribune Media Services

Who could not despise the tottering Bashar al-Assad dictatorship in Syria?
Read more →

Iran’s Win, Win, Win Bomb

by Victor Davis Hanson

National Review Online

Iran, if not stopped, will join the nuclear club, probably within two or three years. It may be stupid to try to preempt Iran; it may be even stupider not to try. Read more →

%d bloggers like this: