BOLTON: He says we have to acknowledge the hard truth we will not eradicate violent conflict in our lifetimes. Well, no kidding. You know, homo sapiens are hard-wired for violent conflict, and we’re not going to eliminate violent conflict until homo sapiens ceases to exist as a separate species. And the whole notion you could even think about eliminating it not just in our lifetime but soon thereafter I think reveals a fundamental misunderstanding of human nature.If you think it sounds familiar, that's because you're thinking of that great statesman, Anan-7 of Eminiar:
ANAN: There can be no peace. Don’t you see? We’ve admitted it to ourselves. We’re a killer species. It’s instinctive. It’s the same with you. Your General Order 24.I'm sure everyone is familiar with Kirk's response:
All right. It's instinctive. The instinct can be fought. We're human beings with the blood of a million savage years on our hands, but we can stop it. We can admit that we're killers, but we not going to kill today. That's all it takes - knowing that we won't kill today.I don't suppose that one can cite Kirk as a necessarily winning argument...but when you start sounding like someone who was deliberately written as a cartoonishly foolish advocate of permanent war, it might be time to consider that something has gone badly wrong.
Death, destruction, disease, horror... that's what war is all about, Anan. That's what makes it a thing to be avoided...
Oh, I also like Yglesias's reaction; he's no James T. Kirk, but he's pretty good, too.