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PS_21 - 28 Charles Krauthammer"The Short Unhappy Life of...

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28. Charles Krauthammer: “The Short, Unhappy Life of Humanitarian War” Charles Krauthammer takes a wholeheartedly pessimistic view on humanitarian war, believing it to be a cause that proves to be in vain. In Kosovo, the Serbs were not deterred from ethnically cleansing the Albanians because initial military acts were against empty buildings. Thus, it was more of a military demonstration than deterrence. It was not until NATO went from symbolic to strategic bombing that the war was won, but this did not occur until after the Albanians were massacred. Ironically, however, for all its failures, Clinton initially chose the means most appropriate to humanitarian warfare: inflicting less violent actions to achieve peace. This brings about the paradigm and what may be the cause of death of humanitarian war: a contradiction of means. Humanitarian war requires means that are inherently inadequate to its ends (bloodlessness). This jeopardizes victory and could prolong the war if restraint continues.
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