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Congratulations to the Foreign Service on a Century of Service

Diplomatic passport leaning against a folded American flag

One hundred years ago, Congress passed the Foreign Service Act, known as the Rogers Act, which created a professional, merit-based diplomatic corps.

On this centennial anniversary, we honor the contributions of the Foreign Service to our national security.

The Editor’s Page



Diplomacy and the Mysteries of the How: The ‘Craft’ in Statecraft by Philip Zelikow

Tough Love and the Diplomacy of Foreign Assistance by Mark Wentling

The Modest Geopolitical Case for Pakistan by Ted Craig

A New Face, But an Old Tactic: History Offers Clues on Stopping Russia’s African Advance by Hank Cohen

Satchmo, the Duke, and the Count: Representing America at its Best Despite Having Experienced its Worst by Larry Tye


The Life of a Moscow Embassy Staff Aide, 1966-1968 by Jonathan Rickert

Death in the Consulate by Don Kursch

Moments in Diplomacy

A Century of Service and Sacrifice by Tom Selinger

From Our Archives

For more on Cultural Diplomacy and the Cold War: Cultural Exchange and the Cold War: How the West Won by Yale Richmond, March 2013.

Another Foreign Service story on serving in Vietnam: Reflecting on Vietnam: A Young Diplomat goes to War by Allen Keiswetter, January 2017


Book Cover: Diplomats at War: Friendship and Betrayal on the Brink of the Vietnam Conflict by Charles Trueheart

Book Review

Diplomats at War: Friendship and Betrayal on the Brink of the Vietnam Conflict (Part of the series of The Miller Center Studies on the Presidency) by Charles Trueheart
Review by Bea Camp

Books of Interest

Book Cover The Sentinel State: Surveillance and the Survival of Dictatorship in China By Minxin Pei Book Cover: Age of Revolutions: Progress and Backlash from 1600 to the Present By Fareed Zakaria Book Cover: The Achilles Trap: Saddam Hussein, the C.I.A., and the Origins of America’s Invasion of Iraq By Steve Coll Book Cover: Spying through A Glass Darkly: The Ethics of Espionage and Counter-Intelligence By Cecile Fabre  Book Cover: American Diplomacy’s Public Dimension: Practitioners as Change Agents in Foreign Relations By Bruce Gregory  Pakistan and American Diplomacy: Book Cover: Insights from 9/11 to the Afghanistan Endgame By Ted Craig


The May issue of the Foreign Service Journal is devoted almost entirely to marking the 100th anniversary of the creation of the professional Foreign Service. In addition to articles by several former secretaries of state, it includes extensive material from current and former Foreign Service personnel.

Hal Brands presents an interesting essay on the moral compromises sometimes needed to advance larger worthwhile ends. However, while he acknowledges that sometimes the means corrupt the ends, when he looks at US foreign policy he only finds examples of compromises that US good intentions justify.

The Global South, this article points out, is a concept that groups a wide variety of states that share some common interests, but also have their own national interests. On issues like debt refinancing and climate change they may form a cohesive negotiating bloc, but on matters involving a variety of other issues, such as bloc leadership, they differ and must be dealt with individually.


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