We Need to Sell Young People on War
Stephen Rosen sees a generation gap on national security issues
By Kevin Spak, Newser User
Posted Mar 31, 2014 1:11 PM CDT
Members of the anti-war group Code Pink, and other organizations, take part in an anti-war demonstration ion front of the White House in Washington, Monday, May 14, 2007.   (AP Photo/Ron Edmonds)

(Newser) – Americans in their 50s and 60s largely understand the positive power of the US military. They saw a military buildup end the Cold War, and witnessed successful interventions in Serbia and Iraq in the 90s, Harvard professor Stephen Peter Rosen—a member of that generation—writes in the Wall Street Journal. But younger Americans see the world very differently. They see the Cold War as unnecessary, and came of age during the Iraq and Afghanistan quagmires. They aren't blind to the world's evils, "they just cannot believe that the use of US military power will make things better."

"The task isn't to convince them that they must support military action when they believe in their hearts that it cannot work," Rosen writes. It's to demonstrate that some things are worth fighting for. Fighting nuclear proliferation makes the world and the US safer. Standing up against territorial incursions like Russia's Crimea move fosters a more profitable free world—and protects against similar attacks on us. "In short, America must help others defend themselves against tyranny because it is in our national interest to do so." Click for Rosen's full column.

More From Newser
My Take on This Story
To report an error on this story,
notify our editors.
We Need to Sell Young People on War is...
Show results without voting
You Might Like
Showing 3 of 109 comments
Glenn McGrew II
Apr 7, 2014 10:28 AM CDT
Wait a second here. The author claims in the first sentence that 50-70-year-old Americans "understand". I'm sorry. I'm 47, my mother is 76, and neither of us understand. How is it that this magic age bracket, which includes many people who staged the cultural revolution of the 60s and 70s, can understand something that was born not of quality and positive results, but of manipulation and deceit? I have not forgotten the numerous deceptive efforts that FDR's government made to get us into WWII, including lying to the public about an attack on a US ship that was escorting European cargo ships when the battle was actually started by the US ship, not the Nazi one. That was motivated by business ties to European magnates, not because the government cared about all those poor Europeans! I haven't forgotten the political war in Vietnam (and the secret war in Cambodia) that had little to do with the objectives our government rammed down our throats, nor have I forgotten the lies and propaganda of Desert Storm, which I endured every day at work as the muzak pumped out "I'm Proud To Be an American" hour after hour while blacking out the media. And let's not forget attacking Afghanistan on trumped-up excuses, the illegal activities of the mercenaries we farmed out the dirty work to (not to mention CIA black ops), Gitmo, illegal torture, a War on Terrorism that will NEVER end (and gives us the "right" to attack whomever we please on whatever trumped up charges we care to level), and Iraq. Oh, did anyone notice the connection between Vietnam, Kuwait, Afghanistan and Iraq? Black gold, and it's got nothing to do with the Beverly Hillbillies! If Rosen wants war, then Rosen should sign up himself and ALL of his family members in perpetuity to serve in these charades of justice and democracy. First on his list should be all of the dictators and tyrants that the US props up while attacking democracies that don't want to kiss US butt. Hypocrisy. Instead of feeding a war machine that will never stop being greedy, why don't we try feeding the world? Or, hey, let's just focus on making sure there aren't any Americans who aren't getting THREE HEALTHY MEALS a day, and then spread the generosity to other countries. After all, the US throws away 40-50% of its food! We don't need war - we need to start doing what we say should be done so that America becomes a burning icon of justice, truth and kindness - not a Ponzi scheme to feed the greed of certain businesses and individuals that have no real loyalty to our country.
Apr 3, 2014 8:43 AM CDT
Maybe we should sell young people on Constitutional wars Stephen? When was the last time we had a constitutional war? A long time ago...When I was a pawn in our unconstitutional war machine in the 80's, as a young adult, I had no idea about secret and unconstitutional wars and "conflicts". Wake up and read the constitution!!! Hold our elected officials to the oath they took to uphold our Constitution first and then let's talk about war! Krank is right that it is a huge business! The war machine profits no matter who wins because they fund both sides! Get out of your cubicle and see the real world and who really runs it.
Apr 3, 2014 8:04 AM CDT
Bilderberg, Rothschild Rosen - manufacture a reality, foist debt upon the populace and have them reduce the global population under the guise of fighting for freedom. Self immolation needs to be profitable for the 1%, otherwise what the hell.