A fascinating quote from Robert Gates, the Bush Secretary of Defense held over into the Obama administration. Gates was speaking to NATO officials, and his reference is in part to the recent fall of the Dutch government over troops in Afghanistan:
“The demilitarization of Europe — where large swaths of the general public and political class are averse to military force and the risks that go with it — has gone from a blessing in the 20th century to an impediment to achieving real security and lasting peace in the 21st.”
Apparently completely unironically the New York Times headlined this story "Gates Calls European Mood a Danger to Peace." If only more "large swaths" of the public would be averse to military force then perhaps Mr. Gates could begin his obviously long-awaited retirement.
Peace, the absence of war; what a concept!