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War isn’t always as much fun as you thought it would be

Three strong quotes about the rush to war with Iran

I’m a day late reading a strong NYTimes analysis piece on the drumbeat for a conflict with Iran over its alleged nuclear ambitions, but three quotes from three different experts jumped out as worth emphasizing.

1. “As a student of history, I’m certainly conscious that when you have heated politics and incomplete control of events, it’s possible to stumble into a war,” Mr. Allison said. Watching Iran, Israel and the United States, he said, “you can see the parties, slowly but almost inexorably, moving to a collision.”

2. Micah Zenko, who studies conflict prevention at the Council on Foreign Relations, sees an old pattern. “It’s true throughout history: there’s always the belief that the next war will go much better than the last war,” he said.

3. Peter Feaver of Duke University, who has long studied public opinion about war and worked in the administration of President George W., Bush, about the pressure a political campaign can put on candidates to make simplistic, inflammatory statements:

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“This is the standard danger of talking about foreign policy crises in a campaign,” he said. “If you try to explain a complex position, you sound hopelessly vague.”