Deterrence By Savagery?

Deterrence By Savagery?

By Moon Alabama – March, 2024

The West’s historical success was rooted in organized violence, rather than its proclaimed values.

“The West won the world not by the superiority of its ideas or values or religion (to which few members of other civilizations were converted) but rather by its superiority in applying organized violence. Westerners often forget this fact; non-Westerners never do.”

Samuel P. Huntington, The Clash of Civilizations and the Remaking of World Order (1996)

Western colonialism began in the fifteenth century and ended, with a few exceptions, in the mid of the 20th century. It was enabled by the development of technologies and fast population growth. The West then changed to a new model of ruling the world. It talked about human values and human rights and certain rules that would allegedly enable everyone to enjoy those.

The facade did not hold up well. The West, and especially the U.S., abused the ‘rules based order’ by circumventing international law whenever it did not fit its interests. It continued to apply ‘organized violence’ under dubious circumstances. The wars against Yugoslavia, Afghanistan and Iraq were supposed to demonstrate that the West would uphold whatever rules it claimed to exist. But the wars were lost and the U.S. had to retreat from them.

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