Bruce Thornton—The Wages of Appeasement

Bruce Thornton is a professor of classics and humanities at California State University, Fresno, and a national fellow at the Hoover Institution. His latest book is The Wages of Appeasement: Ancient Athens, Munich and Obama’s America.

According to Bruce Thornton, “Appeasement is an eternal temptation for all people.” Why? And what has appeasement got to do with Obama’s America? Drawing on the lessons of the Greek city-states in their confrontations with Phillip II of Macedon and England in the 1920s and 1930s as it faced the threat of Hitler’s Germany, Thornton points out the inherent weakness of democracies as they deal with enemies. He draws a straight line of appeasement that began in Saigon in 1975 and then proceeded through Teheran in 1979 to New York in 2001. Finally he offers his thoughts on how we can break free of this dangerous trajectory.

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