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Don’t Do As the Romans Did…

Michael Auslin, Ph.D

(original source Politico Magazine)

“For many years, the world’s greatest power faced two grave external threats: from irregular groups of non-state actors and from large, newly empowered, rising states that wanted to displace it. Massive amounts of national treasure were expended on military operations ranging from tactical raids to full-scale war. Negotiation alternated with conflict, thousands of troops were deployed permanently abroad and allied states were built up as a buffer against both threats. But in the end all this wasn’t enough: National exhaustion and a breakdown of political legitimacy led to the eventual collapse of the state. Why? Because it never fully realized that its security crisis was ultimately as much a domestic issue—a question of getting its politics in order—as it was an external one.”

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