Naval War College Review


George Will began a recent column by recounting a celebrated episode from that disastrous and indomitable year 1940. A British commander sent this cryptic three-word message as his troops were being evacuated: "But if not." Will makes the point that the words were immediately seen to be a quotation from Daniel 3, 18, the reply of the three young men to Kiug Nebuchadnezzar who had threatened to cast them into a fiery furnace for their refusal to worship the golden image he had erected.