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December 2, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Defending the Right to a Jewish State

Heather Hale: Compliment your kids without giving them big heads

Megan Shauri: 10 ways you are ruining your own happiness

Carolyn Bigda: 8 Best Dividend Stocks for 2015

Kiplinger's Personal Finance editors: 7 Things You Didn't Know About Paying Off Student Loans

Samantha Olson: The Crucial Mistake 55% Of Parents Are Making At Their Baby's Bedtime

Densie Well, Ph.D., R.D. Open your eyes to yellow vegetables

The Kosher Gourmet by Megan Gordon With its colorful cache of purples and oranges and reds, COLLARD GREEN SLAW is a marvelous mood booster --- not to mention just downright delish
April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review Sept. 5, 2013/ 30 Elul, 5773

Same old, same old in Syria

By Victor Davis Hanson



http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | President Obama's on-and-off-again planned American attack on Syria is nothing new. Besides its five declared wars, America has a habit of intervening all over the world.

Even apart from clandestine CIA operations, and even after the unhappy end of the Vietnam War, we have attacked lots of countries and non-state militias.

The roll call of recent American military interventions is quite astounding: Cambodia, Iran, Libya, Lebanon, Grenada, Panama, Liberia, Iraq, Haiti, Somalia, the former Yugoslavia, Zaire and Afghanistan.

Even the notion of Past American isolationism is a myth. In the four years between 1912 and 1916 alone, the U.S. sent troops into Cuba, Panama, Honduras, Nicaragua, Mexico, the Dominican Republic and Haiti.

Even those busy years of intervention were not novel. Since our infancy, the U.S. military has been constantly engaged. In another four-year period between 1812 and 1816, America fought the British, the French, the Spanish and the North Africans.

Some of these deployments were effective, either furthering American and allied interests or serving a common humanitarian purpose. Greece was saved from communism after World War II. Saddam Hussein was forced out of Kuwait and ultimately Iraq. Dictator and drug-dealer Manuel Noriega was deposed from Panama. At other times, our periodic undeclared wars just made things worse.

With President Obama contemplating bombing Syria, is there any guide from the past about whether yet another attack is wise or silly?

Sometimes the president sought congressional approval (e.g., both Bushes in the two Iraq wars). At other times he attacked without authorization (Clinton in the Balkans). Obtaining a U.N. resolution seemed wise before the first Gulf War, but proved impossible in the Balkan bombing.



After Vietnam and the passage of the War Powers Act, it was more likely for a president to seek congressional authorization, but again not always. Reagan, like many others, bombed the Libyans and invaded Grenada without asking Congress.

Sometimes the undeclared interventions cost Americans tens of thousands of lives (Korea and Vietnam). But often, very few were killed (Panama and Grenada). The interventions could last just a few days, as when Clinton sent missiles and bombs into Afghanistan, East Africa and Iraq, or years on end like the costly ground fighting in Afghanistan, Iraq and Vietnam.

Our supposed motives varied widely -- whether revenge (bombing Libya or Afghanistan), enforcing U.N. resolutions (Korea), the prevention of genocide (Serbia), humanitarianism (Somalia), helping allies (Vietnam), regime change (Iraq and Libya), protecting U.S. commercial interests (Central America) or harming foreign efforts (Grenada).

If we collate all the interventions since the Marines invaded Tripoli in 1804, a certain pattern emerges. The more clearly defined and decisive the intervention, the more likely it was judged successful.

In addition, making progress or winning outright was essential to ensuring public support

Even disastrous and ill-thought-out interventions that accomplished nothing or made things worse, such as President Ford's 1975 attack in Cambodia, President Carter's failed Iran rescue mission (1980) or Ronald Reagan's intervention in Lebanon (1982-'83) did not cause lasting popular outrage -- given that setbacks were brief and the operations quickly ended.

In contrast, any war that drags on and costs thousands of American lives -- whether in Afghanistan, Iraq, Korea, the Philippines or Vietnam -- proves unpopular, even when they sometimes succeed in deposing tyrants and putting something better in their place.

In this regard, we should not expect much good from bombing Syria, given the difficulty to sort out the various insurgents and our loud prior announcements of limiting the use of force.

To the degree we are not willing to insert ground troops, it is more likely both that we won't accomplish much and won't get trapped in a quagmire.

It is wiser to obtain congressional approval, and the more foreign allies that join the better. Having a clear objective, a sound methodology and a definition of victory is essential, whether in big or small interventions.

But so far the president can't decide on the real objective in Syria, much less how to obtain it. Is the goal the elimination of WMDs, the punishment of Bashar Assad for using these weapons, restoring the president's credibility after unwisely issuing red lines, immediate U.S. national security interests, the removal of Assad himself or help to the insurgents?

If the president neither obtains congressional approval nor makes the attempt to go the U.N., the attack will probably be unpopular abroad -- even more so without any allies or American public support.

Finally, promising in advance that whatever we do will probably be short and limited will make it likely that, if it fails, it will be forgiven and forgotten -- and if deemed successful, it will have little, if any, lasting, strategic effects.

Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in the media and Washington consider "must-reading". Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.

Victor Davis Hanson, a classicist and military historian, is a senior fellow at the Hoover Institution and a recipient of the 2007 National Humanities Medal. Comment by clicking here.


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