Explaining is not Endorsing

It causes me no small amount of regret to pen what follows, but I think Matthew Yglesias is being unfair to Tom Friedman here. By my reading, Friedman isn’t endorsing the use of collective punishment as a deterrent, he’s just saying that that’s the logic behind Israel’s operation in Gaza. And, as I argued last week, that is the logic behind Israel’s Gaza operation, even if it’s a logic that I don’t endorse.

Yglesias says of Friedman, he is “positing a much sicker rationale for military action than its actual initiators have been willing to articulate.” But surely Yglesias would agree that’s a good thing, if the initiators are trying to obfuscate the real rationale?

More World Politics Review