N. Luttwak: “Give War a Chance” Analysis Essay

2274 Words Apr 2nd, 2012 10 Pages
“Give War a Chance” is an article written by the American economist, historian and military strategist Edward Nicolae Luttwak in 1999, in the American magazine Foreign Affairs. It make an easily understandable “buzz”, since its main assumption is that most kind of peacekeeping or humanitarian operations are, in an objective point of view, a bad thing for the peace, and that it tends, paradoxically, to slower its establishment. We will analyze here the main hypothesis that Luttwak is developing among the article, the first one being the destruction of the legitimacy usually accorded to peacekeeping operations, led by the UN or by other military organizations, and the second one being the obstacle to a durable peace establishment, created …show more content…
What they do is that they pull off unarmed or slightly armed “observers” missions; which suffer just the same problems as UN and are simply inefficient.
On the contrary, military organizations like NATO or such as the West African Peacekeeping Force (ECOMOG) do have the means to protect civilians efficiently from the damages of conflicts. But even that often fails since these organizations tend to avoid any risk of casualties among their troops, thus avoiding combat and limiting their effectiveness. In Bosnia, U.S troops could potentially arrest known war criminals that crossed their checkpoints, but didn’t, since it would have provoked confrontation.
On the NATO’s intervention against Serbia for the sake of Kosovo, the author puts in perspective the success publicly acclaimed of this operation. Certainly, there’s been a very successful air-cleansing operation, relying on the precautions took by NATO during its strike against the Serbs (few strikes during the first weeks, the targeting of air-defense systems first, minimizing the risk of future casualties, the avoiding of anti-aircraft weapons by bombing from very high altitudes and the restriction to operate only under a clean weather). However, on the ground, there was the possibility for NATO to destroy armored vehicles that Serb soldiers used to use to terrorize local Albanian

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