"Advice to post-modern states: accept that intervention in the premodern is going to be a fact of life. To make it less dangerous and more sustainable in the long run, there are four requirements: clear, limited objectives; means, also with clear limits attached to them; a political process to parallel the military operation; and a decision, taken in advance, to withdraw if objectives are not achieved in a given time," - Robert Cooper [PDF].

We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to the editor or write to letters@theatlantic.com.