In This Review

How to Stop a War
How to Stop a War
By James E. Dunnigan and William Martel
Doubleday, 1987, 312 pp.
War and the Changing Global System
War and the Changing Global System
By William K. Domke
Yale University Press, 1988, 209 pp.

Dunnigan is a specialist in war games and Martel a RAND analyst. Their breezy book surveys 200 years of wars that happened and those that didn't. Its conclusions are reassuringly commonsensical: very large wars are difficult to get started, hence rare (only four in 200 years); ignorance of the enemy makes war more likely, as does ignorance of the possibility of war; the military usually recommends against military solutions; and nuclear weapons seem to have prevented major wars. Domke's data base is similar, though his purposes are more explicitly theoretical: for instance, does "interdependence" make war less likely? It does seem to; trading nations have been less likely to go to war.