Yet another blog...Sort of. There certainly are a lot of good blogs out there already, including ones focused on the current wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Some blogs are daily lists of interesting links to other material; others feature the author's regular comments on current events.
I have a slightly different mission in mind. I'm struck (and a bit horrified) by two strains in our public discourse about "the war on terrorism":
(1) Although 9/11 supposedly changed everything, public commentary about matters of war and peace--and terrorism in particular--seem as poorly informed as ever.
(2) Democratic discussion seems to be a lost art. As citizens, we're not reaching collective understandings or decisions.
Given my background and interests, I'm hoping to help in some small way to improve both situations. Here's my strategy:
* Discuss what bright, serious, and dedicated people, from Thucydides to Liddell-Hart,
have said about war and politics.
* Tie these discussions it to current events, where appropriate.
* See where we can apply the lessons of history, and identify common, obvious standards for success and failure on which we can all agree.
I've had some success with elements of this strategy before. For example, I once taught a class on many of the topics we'll discuss that started just before Desert Storm started, and ended soon after the ground offensive stopped. Not surprisingly, it was easy to link a particular academic point about military theory to the news of the day.
So, is this yet another blog? In many ways, yes--for example, I'm very eager to see what kind of discussions we might have, and I'll link to other content out there in the "blogosphere" and the rest of the web. I'm also hoping that, over time, this blog will build more or less into a book of sorts, an ongoing but structured commentary on counter-terrorism and related topics.
We'll see how it works. Meanwhile, please forgive any missteps in the layout or design of the site.