Re: Aid for Afghanistan

From: Geraint Rees (
Date: Wed Jan 02 2002 - 10:38:31 MST

On 1/2/02 4:29 PM, "John Clark" <> wrote:

>> Geraint Rees <> Wrote:
>> and suggests that at least as much attention should be paid to long
>> term outcomes as short term gain.
> I strongly disagree, especially in foreign relations because short term
> consequences can usually be predicted at least approximately but long
> term it's pure speculation; ask two experts and you'll get three opinions.
> Our goal should be to kill as many terrorists as we can in the next 6 months
> and disrupt their network so they don't crash another airliner into a
> building. What outcome this will produce two decades from now nobody
> known and nobody can know.

I agree that long term prediction is much more difficult than short term,
but that doesn't mean it's worth trying to get better at it. I'm also not
suggesting that the two are mutually exclusive! For example, I agree with
the short term goals that you suggest. But that doesn't mean that we
shouldn't also invest in longer term planning, whether that means recruiting
more CIA agents to infilitrate such networks, pressing for a peaceful
solution to other longstanding regional conflicts, or whatever. Tough on
terrorism, tough on the causes of terrorism, no?

Best wishes,


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