Angelo M. Codevilla

Biography: 

Angelo M. Codevilla, a native of Italy, is a professor emeritus of international relations at Boston University. He was a US naval officer and Foreign Service officer and served on the Senate Intelligence Committee as well as on presidential transition teams. For a decade he was a senior research fellow at the Hoover Institution. He is the author of fourteen books, including War Ends and Means, The Character of Nations, Advice to War Presidents, and most recently, To Make and Keep Peace Among Ourselves and with All Nations. He is a student of the classics as well as of European literature; he is also a commercial grape grower. Video: Angelo Codevilla on the importance of history in current policy decisions.

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May 11-23, 2003: From Peace To War In Iraq

by Angelo M. Codevillavia Military History in the News
Friday, May 19, 2017

In the middle of May 2003, the U.S. government threw away a victory that its armed forces had won and started a new war that it had no idea how to win. This fortnight’s events remind us that the lack of unity of conception and command can turn victory into disaster.

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No Safe Wars

by Angelo M. Codevillavia Military History in the News
Monday, May 15, 2017

The events of May 12 in and concerning the Vietnam War remind us of the necessity to be clear about one’s objectives and what it takes to achieve them, by showing how speaking and acting without such clarity places one’s fortunes at the enemy’s mercy.

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Unjustifiable Tribute

by Angelo M. Codevillavia Military History in the News
Wednesday, May 10, 2017

On May 10, 1801, Yusuf Karamanli, the Pasha of Tripoli, announced his intention to commence hostilities against the United States and then formally declared war on May 14 when his men chopped down the consulate’s flagpole. Tripoli, along with the other North African (Barbary) states of Tunis and Algiers, was demanding tribute for the passage of American ships. This war ended in 1805 with a U.S. military victory over Tripoli, but without removing any of the Barbary states’ pretensions regarding the United States. 

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Defending the Final Frontier

by Angelo M. Codevillavia Strategika
Wednesday, March 15, 2017

The capacity to protect one’s own military satellite network while destroying the enemy’s—entirely feasible well within a decade—would relegate an enemy’s military operations to pre-modern levels.

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America Respected Vs. Global Security

by Angelo M. Codevillavia Strategika
Thursday, January 26, 2017

George Kennan wrote that Americans in 1905 had not imagined threats from abroad, but that by 1950 they could hardly think of anything else. In the intervening half century, U.S. foreign policy had adopted the maxim that America’s security is inseparable from the rest of the world’s peace and progress. Accordingly, Woodrow Wilson’s Great War, his settlement thereof, and subsequent American-led treaties for global peace and arms control sought to “make the world safe for democracy.” 

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Time To Dump The Baby—And The Bathwater

by Angelo M. Codevillavia Strategika
Monday, October 31, 2016

The premise that the current foreign policy’s major features (e.g., Iran deal, tergiversation regarding ISIS, etc.) are peculiar to the Obama administration is mistaken. In fact, these policies are manifestations or extrapolations of attitudes longstanding and pervasive among U.S. policymakers of both parties. As such, they are sure to transcend Obama. They will characterize U.S. foreign policy unless and until these officials, academics, and media figures are replaced by persons with different mentalities.

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Terrorism From Within

by Angelo M. Codevillavia Strategika
Monday, August 15, 2016

On September 11, 2001, specifically the moment passengers on UA93 learned that three other hijacked liners had been crashed into the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, the U.S. forever ceased to be vulnerable to such hijackings. Never again would passengers follow the FAA’s regulation not to interfere with hijackers. Not ISIS or anyone else can change that.

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NATO In The Baltics: And Then What?

by Angelo M. Codevillavia Military History in the News
Monday, July 25, 2016

On July 24, 1941, Secretary Of War Henry L. Stimson, reacting to yet another rise in tensions with Japan, ordered that U.S. forces in the Philippines be reinforced. Subsequently, the Philippine Commonwealth Army was called into direct U.S. service. Douglas MacArthur was recalled to active duty and placed in overall command.

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Peace Through Predominance

by Angelo M. Codevillavia Military History in the News
Wednesday, July 13, 2016

On July 8, 1853, Commodore Matthew C. Perry sailed into Tokyo Bay with four ships to deliver a letter from U.S. President Millard Fillmore proposing peaceful commercial relations. The Japanese refused to accept the letter, until Perry made it clear that this would result in a cannonade from his ships that would have devastated downtown Tokyo.

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Ending America’s Civil War, And Restarting It

by Angelo M. Codevillavia Military History in the News
Thursday, July 7, 2016

Between June 29 and July 4, 1913, some 53,000 Union and Confederate veterans of the Civil War gathered at Gettysburg, where many had shot and bayonetted each other fifty years earlier. They embraced—often tearfully—dressed in Blue and Gray, surrounded by the flags under which each side had fought. President Woodrow Wilson told them, “We have found one another again as brothers and comrades in arms, enemies no longer, generous friends rather, our battles long past, the quarrel forgotten—except that we shall not forget the splendid valor.”

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