Skip to comments.Sowell: 'Proportional' Response
Posted on 04/08/2013 2:56:26 PM PDT by jazusamo
Since when has it been considered smart to tell your enemies what your plans are?
Yet there on the front page of the April 8th New York Times was a story about how unnamed "American officials" were planning a "proportional" response to any North Korean attack. This was spelled in an example: If the North Koreans "shell a South Korean island that had military installations" then the South Koreans would retaliate with "a barrage of artillery of similar intensity."
Whatever the merits or demerits of such a plan, what conceivable purpose can be served by telling the North Koreans in advance that they need fear nothing beyond a tit for tat? All that does is lower the prospective cost of aggression.
When the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor, should we have simply gone over and bombed a harbor in Japan? Does anyone think that this response would have stopped Japanese aggression? Or stop other nations from taking shots at the United States, when the price was a lot lower than facing massive retaliation?
Back before the clever new notion of "proportional" response became the vogue, our response to Pearl Harbor was ultimately Hiroshima and Nagasaki. And Japan has not attacked or even threatened anybody since then. Nor has any war broken out anywhere that is at all comparable with World War II.
Which policy is better? There was a time when we followed the ancient adage "By their fruits ye shall know them." The track record of massive retaliation easily beats that of the more sophisticated-sounding proportional response.
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A-fricken-men! You hint to your enemy that if you set off as much as a dud firecracker, we will reduce your POS country to glass that glows in the dark. Nothing else need be said.
Like he says, “What about other countries around the world who are watching what the American government is doing?”
But what do you expect from the 0bama administration. They haven't learned when they announced the Iraq and the Afghanistan withdrawals
Sowell is trying to interject rational thought where it is not welcome.
Bump for a great read.
Dr. Sowell should know that "proportional response" was not a "vogue." It was a deliberate attempt by the Left to shame Israel into not using its vastly superior firepower to retaliate against the Palestinians whenever they attacked Israel with bombs and rockets.
"Proportional response" was then used against the Bushes to keep them from routing Saddam Hussein in both Iraq wars.
Good Lord. We're back in the Johnson Administration.
Guess what they prescribe for us is no remedy for them.
A strongly worded diplomatic condemnation with many forceful adjectives and a proposal for a new tax to study the problem.
We should turn the soil to glass and vaporize the peeps where they stand when the flash goes off. Either that or do nothing at all. We need to get back to fighting for total victory or just becoming a big Switzerland, but “proportional” is for poosies.....
Howsabout we turn their so-called “capital” into a puddle of greenish glass?
THEN send ‘em a sternly-worded note of protest.
Slightly off topic, but what the hell. If I were president (a prospect slightly less likely than Jesus returning to Earth tomorrow as a pink unicorn), I would erect a large wheel in the Oval Office. You know, one of those carnival, spin-the-wheel wheels with the name of non-favored nations on the spaces. The usual suspects: North Korea, Iran, Syria, Malta, you get the idea. The way it would work is, if the U.S. is hit by a major terrorist attack, we would go after the responsible party, but we would ALSO spin the wheel. If you nation came up, we would nuke the living crap out of it. Of course, you could get your country OFF the wheel, if you were to provide credible and relevant intelligence about active terrorist groups that may or may not be operating on your soil. But that would be totally up to you, and how lucky you were feeling. About as un-PC as you could get, and totally condemned by MSNBC, but so be it.
The reason there hasn’t been peace in the middle east is because Israel was repeatedly halted from ensuring their enemies could no longer wage war.
Same thing with the USA. The last peace was achieved with the end of WWII.
When the pols step in and stop the military from completing the destruction of the enemy’s ability to wage war, we simply set ourselves up for perpetual war... Maybe not right away, but in time...
Dr Sowell is absolutely right.
Amen, well said.
“Proportional Response” simply means that the US is not allowed to decisively win wars.
We really, really need to ditch the “Laws of Land Warfare.” Most of enemies don’t abide by them and we need to used “excessive force” to get things over with.
The proper response would be to just finish up the job of taking that part of the world back to the stone age and seeing if they can do better next time.
Excellent point! But perhaps there's a misunderstanding about the meaning of "yours" and "ours?"
And the “glass parking lot” approach should have been applied to a certain pair of “holy cities” on 9/12/01.
I know...it sounds awful but look what it would have prevented!
Obama doesn't have this Country's best interest at heart; he's quite content to work against our welfare, to undermine our prestige and safety and that of our allies.
He'll behave one way to protect his own power and control and in the diametric opposite way to look after the well-being of America since he doesn't identify with her.
It means nothing to him and his crowd to give away the store to our enemies. Let the left's own concerns be on the line and, yes, they fight like tigers.
Hope this clarifies my position.
Not indelicate at all, FRiend!
Point being that he WILL play Chicago tactics with his enemies.
But who are his enemies? The majority of the voting population doesn’t seem to understand their relationship with “the won.”
It’s hard to accept that there are so many “naïve” citizens.
For more than a century since the British settled in the Falkland Islands, Argentina had not dared to invade them. Why?
Because, until recent times, an Argentine attack on a British settlement would be risking not only a British counterattack there, but the danger of a major British attack on Argentina itself. That could mean leaving Buenos Aires in ruins.
Ancient Romans, the Khan family ... too.
50 to 1 is a proportion...
The left’s major concern is demonstrating their superior righteousness, not solving problems. We spent ten years in Afghanistan and the place is no different that before we got there. That is evil because we sacrificed young men’s lives for nothing.
Politicians have snatched defeat FRom the jaws of victory in every conflict (with a few VERY minor exceptions) the US has been involved in since WW II.
Say what you will about General MacArthur, he got it right: “In war, there is no substitute for victory!”
Bottom line, kicking ass, breaking things and taking names works to keep bullies in place, be they people or countries.
Dr. Sowell, of course, has a firm grasp of the obvious. Too bad our government does not!
Well said, Sir.
Expect the 479 S Korean managers to be expelled tomorrow. The 4 Chinese managers will stay on with maintenance crews for the annual spring cleanup.
The 53,000 NK workers and their 100,000 family members will be quite busy doing spring planting.
The SK workers posed a major security risk for the NK Second Army Corps.
Sat photos show that all four army corps reserves mobilized for combat exercises over the past few months have turned in their weapons to their local Ministry of Peoples Safety on 1, April and went back to work gathering fertilizer for spring planting.
Worker and Peasant Red Guards have to grow their own food. Sat photos show they did not carry weapons and backpacks in the fields or in the streets after 1, April as they are required when mobilized about 1, February. Now they are all carrying shovels and hoes.
When mobilized, the Guards relocate to caves and tunnels in the mountains, and now they have gone back to garrison.
Remember, the DPRK are absolute experts at incitement and propaganda. The S Koreans often deliver translations of NK statements that are not accurate.
NK statements always have a backdoor way out that lets them walk backward from hardline statements. That rarely comes through the SK translations.
Posters about self defense have been replaced with posters about the economy.
” What about other countries around the world who are watching what the American government is doing? Many have to decide whether they want to cooperate with the United States, and risk the wrath of our enemies, or cooperate with our enemies and risk nothing.”
There you are.