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Greece was in the middle of a civil war with Communist rebels.Other parts of Western Europe, broken in spirit and bankrupt from two world wars in thirty years, were also ripe for revolution and conquest.
I will never forget, for example, the military student I had many years ago who insisted that the American victory in the War of Independence was inevitable.
The reason we even think about these alternate possibilities, however, is to prevent us from making the mistake of believing in inevitability.
The inability to see alternatives leads to lazy strategic thinking, which is why so many programs—including the department I once chaired at the Naval War College, Strategy and Policy—use counterfactual history.
” Especially for many of my younger students, the victory of the American-led coalition of democracies now seems like a natural end to a struggle that really wasn’t all that dangerous, and whose outcome was foreordained.
But to the people who fought the Cold War, there were many days where it all seemed to be a lot more tenuous.