The Risks of Victory: An Historian's Provocation

Gavrilo Princip and Osama bin Laden have much in common, even if the Habsburg Empire and the United States do not.

Issue: Winter 2001-2002

If it is true, as so many pundits rushed to tell us after the events of September 11, 2001, that everything is different, all is changed, and nothing will ever again be the same, then it follows that the study of history is unlikely to provide any guidance as we navigate our suddenly more uncertain future. But, of course, it is not true. The essential structure of contemporary international politics has not changed, and neither has human nature. That said, there are more and less intelligent ways to engage historical knowledge in service to the present.

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