Victor Davis Hanson

Victor Davis Hanson
Victor Davis Hanson
  • Born: September 5, 1953
  • Nationality: American
  • Profession: Historian

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Victor Davis Hanson is an American classicist, military historian, columnist, and farmer. He has been a commentator on modern and ancient warfare and contemporary politics for National Review, The Washington Times and other media outlets. He is a professor emeritus of classics at California State University, Fresno, and is currently the Martin and Illie Anderson Senior Fellow in classics and military history at Stanford University's Hoover Institution. He chairs the Hoover working group on Military History and Contemporary Conflict as well as being the general editor of the Hoover online journal, Strategika. He has been a visiting professor at Hillsdale College where he teaches an intensive course on world, ancient or military history in the autumn semester, as the Wayne and Marcia Buske Distinguished Fellow in History since 2004. Hanson is the author of Carnage and Culture: Landmark Battles in the Rise of Western Power (2001), a New York Times best-selling book.

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Censorship only accelerates. It is dressed up in multicultural gobbledygook about hurtfulness and insensitivity, when the real issue is whether we in the West are going to be blown up or beheaded if we dare come out and support the right of an artist or newspaper to be occasionally crass. The radical Islamists are our generation's book burners who search for secular Galileos and Newtons. They are the new Nazi censors who sniff out anything favorable to the Jews. These fundamentalists are akin to the Soviet commissars who once decreed all art must serve political struggle — or else. Freedom & Liberty
Coups usually follow national humiliation. Rebellion, Revolution, Insurgency & Resistance
Democracies are actually war-prone, owing to their very moral conceit—their confidence in the superiority of their culture and the system of their government—and the ease by which a simple majority vote of their legislatures can instantaneously mobilize an entire society for war. Democracies & Republics
Many people in the UN vote and then go home where nobody votes. United Nations ;Dictators, Despots, Autocrats, Autocracies & Dictatorships
The American public, not the timeless nature of war, has changed. We no longer easily accept human imperfections. We care less about correcting problems, than in assessing blame. In post-modern America it is defeat that has a thousand fathers and the notion of victory is an orphan. Nationalism & Treason ;Citizenship & Patriotism
The more we spend on social spending the more we create an appetite for more social spending. Budgets & Budgeting
Throughout history, powers that did not have a strong navy, even though they were impressive on land, usually failed in all-out war Defense & National Security
War is never a choice between a good choice and a bad choice. It is a choice between a bad choice and a worse choice. War & Peace ;Foreign Policy, World & International Affairs
Americans spend more money on Botox, face lifts and tummy tucks than on the age-old scourges of polio, small pox and malaria. Money, Coins & Minting
Any time the Western way of war can be unleashed on an enemy stupid enough to enter its arena, victory is assured. Time ;War & Peace
Even in its third century, America is still the most meritocratic nation in the world.
History has shown that a government's redistribution of shrinking wealth, in preference to a private sector's creation of new sources of it, can prove more destructive than even the most deadly enemy. History ;Government
In history, one gathers clues like a detective, tries to present an honest account of what most likely happened, and writes a narrative according to what we know and, where we aren't absolutely sure, what might be most likely to have happened, within the generally accepted rules of evidence and sources. History
Often, the pretexts for starting a war are not real shortages of land, food or fuel, but rather perceptions - like fear, honor and perceived self-interest. War & Peace ;Nutrition, Food, Starvation, Farming & Agriculture
Popular culture is simply a reflection of what the majority seems to want.
States are like people. They do not question the awful status quo until some dramatic event overturns the conventional and lax way of thinking.
The fact is, beneath the hype, Iraqis will soon appreciate American help and idealism far more than French perfidy. It is never wrong to be on the side of freedom - never. Freedom & Liberty
The gradual decline of a society is often a self-induced process of trying to meet ever-expanding appetites, rather than a physical inability to produce past levels of food and fuel, or to maintain adequate defense. Society ;Nutrition, Food, Starvation, Farming & Agriculture
This bloody past suggests to us that enemies cease hostilities only when they are battered enough to acknowledge that there is no hope in victory - and thus that further resistance means only useless sacrifice. Hope
War seems to come out of nowhere, like rust that suddenly pops up on iron after a storm. War & Peace