The one certainty about the outcome [of the Scottish independence referendum] was that any close result was a bad result. It is. Those who argued in 1997 that devolution was a slippery slope were right. Last week, Scottish nationalists lost a battle. But the outcome makes it very likely they have won their war.
People who spend time in poor black communities often comment on how distrustful residents are of one another. The fact that the police frequently blackmail residents of these neighborhoods to inform on one another presumably contributes to such pervasive distrust.
While the police win most of the battles, they are not winning the war.
Shawn Henry, FBI executive assistant director [in 2012]:
We're not winning.
I don't see how we ever come out of this without changes in technology or changes in behavior, because with the status quo, it's an unsustainable model. Unsustainable in that you never get ahead, never become secure, never have a reasonable expectation of privacy or security.
Just wars require not only proportionality but also a reasonable chance of success. And the problem with so much of the west's military involvement in Iraq, in particular, is that it has precious little conception of what success actually looks like.
The best argument for reading history is not that it will show us the right thing to do in one case or the other, but rather that it will show us why even doing the right thing rarely works out.
The only way to win the game is simply not to play.