Rule Set Shift in the Ivory Tower
As the GWOT moves forward the states engaged in destroying terror will be forced to adapt the realities of this new kind of warfare. The NSA surveillance debate, the Patriot Act, the advent of state sponsored assasination, the redefining of sovereignty and failed states etc are all examples of this transition.
The rule set shift is being shaped and slowed by friction caused by the various forces Marc Schulman discusses here.
Most interesting to me was an article he cited where Pulitzer Prize winning author and professor of history Joseph Ellis (author of Founding Brothers) makes a profound mistake.
He argues -
My first question: where does Sept. 11 rank in the grand sweep of American history as a threat to national security? By my calculations it does not make the top tier of the list, which requires the threat to pose a serious challenge to the survival of the American republic.
Here is my version of the top tier: the War for Independence, where defeat meant no United States of America; the War of 1812, when the national capital was burned to the ground; the Civil War, which threatened the survival of the Union; World War II, which represented a totalitarian threat to democracy and capitalism; the cold war, most specifically the Cuban missile crisis of 1962, which made nuclear annihilation a distinct possibility.
Apparently the opening shots of a long term conflict designed to destroy the legitimacy of the American nation state does not qualify as a “serious challenge”.
The ivory tower has repeatedly shown an inability to understand and process this idea; with the noteable exceptions of Phillip Bobbit and Martin van Creveld of course.
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