Published in The Hill.
Photo: Houthi supporters protest against the United States over its decision to designate the Houthi rebels movement as a foreign terrorist organization in Sanaa, Yemen, on Jan 18, 2021. Source: Hani Al-Ansi /dpa/picture alliance via Getty Images file
Let’s not confuse diplomacy and appeasement. Diplomacy is always the preferred choice, and the military option is the last. Diplomacy is most effective when backed by non-lethal actions, primarily sanctions. But diplomacy turns into appeasement and undermines U.S. security interests when our adversaries perceive that we are unwilling to use force, even when all other options are exhausted. This is the definition of giving up leverage.
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