What’s the case for appeasement?
After World War Two, “appeaser” is the word that foreign policy professionals least wish to have applied to themselves. If it once suggested a commitment to pacifism, it now means weakness: in recent years, US presidents have been accused of appeasing Islam, Russia, big oil, the NCAA, and a host of other villains—no one ever uses “appeasement” in the nice sense of the word.
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But take yourself back to the late 1930s. Was there an argument for appeasement? Was it justifiable, according to the experiences that shaped the “Munich Generation?” If you had lived through World War One, for instance, how would you have felt when Neville Chamberlain stepped off that plane in 1938 waving his “piece of paper?”