Naval War College Review


N.A.M Rodger


According to Hegel, we learn from history that we do not learn from history.* We also learn that historians are deeply unreliable, and never more so than when they are foolish enough to predict the future. Historians, in fact, would certainly be the worst possible guides to the policy maker, were it not for the alternative. But the alternative is not other people with better information but other people with no information, for it is the past that makes the present and the future. All of us, as individuals, as organizations, and as societies, have per- sonalities that are made up of our experiences.