The limits of military power

The big lesson of this decade is that military power, no matter how great, has acute limitations. The US overwhelmed Afghanistan, only to discover how difficult it is to build a viable state from a failed one. Then it overwhelmed Iraq, only to find that it couldn’t stop the country from disintegrating. Now Israel, with all its military might, finds that it can’t defeat Hizbollah using military means. Eventually the penny will drop. But when?

The funny thing is that the people who understand the limitations of military power most acutely are the military. But gung-ho politicians rarely listen to them.