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14 August 2017


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Peter AU

"Conflicts by Richard Sale"

Much of the "US" west has grown up with the results of Nuremberg. Aggression is the greatest crime, and following orders is no excuse. There have been attempts to get around the crime of aggression. R2P, WMD ect ect.
In overturning this, there will be a breakdown.
Trying to analyse every wind gust in the storm of the US breakdown is a bit like analysing every gust of wind in a storm.

Bill H

The "results" of Nuremberg? I think Nuremberg was about lessons, not results, and we have spent the last several decades frantically burying those lessons and trying to forget that they were ever learned.

Larry Kart

Terrific piece. Much wisdom here.

The Twisted Genius


My thanks for another excellent work. That beast within us all bears watching and restraint by the stout chains of shared and internalized culture. Without those cultural chains, the host must be subdued by physical chains or something more drastic. Having said that, our internal beast can serve us well in certain situations like in defense of an innocent or in close battle in a cold cellar in a Shouf village.

richard sale

Thank you.


richard sale

Your reply is very thoughtful. Thank you for it.


William Fitzgerald


You've submitted a beautiful and, in my opinion, metaphorical piece of writing. Yesterday I purchased a book, "The German War" by Nicholas Stargardt, and the following passage struck me in relation to your "Conflict" and the dichotomy in thought and perception of reality now permeating American society.

"Whereas left-wing and liberal thinkers saw history in linear, progressive terms, many conservatives believed that it was circular and repetitive, like the life cycle."

I wondered whether Hammond's argument with his colleagues was not linked to that philosophic difference.



I'm a lefty, but never liked the truism that liberals are optimists about human nature and conservatives are pessimists. For one thing, I'm a Christian, so pessimism about human nature is part of the theology, but it doesn't follow that conservatives are right on policy issues.

Truthfully, I think we are all self righteous, both liberals and conservatives, so I agree with the Hammond character. When liberals say people are basically good, they really mean themselves. When conservatives say we are all basically sinners, they really mean everyone but themselves. In theory, once you understand that, people could set aside the self righteousness and just argue about policies. But self righteousness is too much fun.

David E. Solomon

William Fitzgerald,

As I remember my long ago days as a history major, it came to me that whether history is circular or linear has been an ongoing discussion.

For what it is worth, I have always sided with the cirucular view of history.



Sampson with a P

Perhaps it is both circular and linear, like a sine way. A succession of swings of the pendulum, action, reaction, counterreaction....


Like an uncoiled garden hose that's been taken from the garage in the spring?

David E. Solomon

Perhaps you are correct? I would, however, argue that whether or not we go through some linear periods is probably less important than the fact that in the end we still go in circles when you look at the longer term result.

William Fitzgerald


Yes, indeed. I'm referring to the reference to an ongoing discussion over circular or linear. Also, in re-reading Richard's story, I saw a definite nod to Thomas Hobbes in one of the paragraphs.


David E. Solomon

Please Post Again Soon Richard,

At the risk of upsetting the good Colonel, I think your calm words might well be appreciated at this time by many of the regular readers of this site.




David E Solomon
Thank you for the insult. pl

David E. Solomon

Colonel, The comment was absolutely not meant as an insult. I think your work is terrific. I just feel that everyone should calm down.

Please take the comment with a lighter tone.



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