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America’s Great Game

January 2015

Review by Amb. (ret.) William A. Rugh America’s Great Game: The CIA’s Secret Arabists and the Shaping of the Modern Middle East by Hugh Wilford, New York: Basic Books, ISBN;13: 978-0465019656, 2013-14, pp.384, $21.45 (Amazon Hardcover), $16.15 (Kindle). History professor … Continued

The State of International Religious Freedom

November 2014

By Robert George, Professor of Jurisprudence, Princeton University Text: https://www.fpri.org/articles/2014/11/state-international-religious-freedom-and-why-it-matters Review by Francis P. Sempa, Contributing Editor Princeton professor Robert George recently delivered the Templeton Lecture on Religion and World Affairs at the Foreign Policy Research Institute in Philadelphia. George … Continued

The Morning After

November 2014

Review by David T. Jones The Morning After: The 1995 Quebec Referendum and The Day That Almost Was by Chantal Hebert with Jean Lapierre, Alfred A Knopf Canada, 2014, ISBN-13: 978-0345807625, 320 pp., $21.74 (Hardcover), $12.79 (Kindle). The Morning After … Continued

Fighting to the End

November 2014

Review by Jon P. Dorschner         Fighting to the End: The Pakistan Army’s Way of War by C. Christine Fair, Oxford University Press: New York, 2014, ISBN 13: 978-0-19-989270-9, 368 pp., $34.95 (Hardcover), $13.49 (Kindle). C. Christine Fair, an Assistant Professor … Continued

Preserving the Rebalance to the Asia-Pacific Region

November 2014

By Thomas Donilon, Council on Foreign Relations Fellow Text: http://www.cfr.org/china/keynote-address-obama-china-preserving-rebalance/p33778 Review by Francis P. Sempa, Contributing Editor Thomas Donilon of the Council on Foreign Relations spoke recently at the Brookings Institution about the Obama Administration’s rebalance toward the Asia-Pacific region. … Continued

Unrest in China

November 2014

By Dr. Thomas Gold, Professor, University of California Text: https://www.fpri.org/articles/2014/10/occupy-centralsunflower-popular-resistance-greater-china Review by David T. Jones Dr. Thomas Gold is professor of sociology at the University of California and Executive Director of the Inter-University Program for Chinese Language Studies, a consortium … Continued

American Diplomacy Links 11.19.14

November 2014

Berlin before and after Our colleague, Ambassador Brian Carlson (ret) notes: I found it fascinating to see how the Wall has disappeared in Berlin, but the Inner German border is still clearly visible and has even become a refuge for … Continued

A Life Lived in CIA, the White House and the Two Koreas

November 2014

Review by Ted Wilkinson Pot Shards: Fragments of a Life Lived in CIA, the White House and the Two Koreas by Donald Gregg, New Academia Publishing, 2014, ISBN-13: 978-0990447115, 332 pages, $38.00 (Hardcover), $26.00 (Paperback), $7.99 (Kindle). Apart from its … Continued

Oriental Despotism

November 2014

by John Vincent This is an almost nostalgic think piece by Stratfor’s Robert Kaplan that first resurrects an analytic hypothesis called “oriental despotism” of absolute power involving “hydraulic societies”, first suggested by Karl Marx and elaborated as recently as 1957. … Continued

War and Great Power Diplomacy After Napoleon

October 2014

Review by Amb. (ret.) Tony Quainton The Congress of Vienna and its Legacy: War and Great Power Diplomacy after Napoleon by Mark Jarrett, I.B. Tauris Publishers, 2014, ISBN-13: 978-1780761169, 522 pp.,  $117.17 (Hardcover), $22.31 (Paperback), $31.02 (E-Textbook). The outbreak of … Continued

The Cultural Consequence of World War I

October 2014

By Roger Kimball, Editor of The New Criterion Text: http://www.newcriterion.com/articles.cfm/Guilt-trip–Versailles–avant-garde—kitsch-7942 Review by Francis P. Sempa, Contributing Editor Roger Kimball, the editor of The New Criterion, delivered the David Armstrong Memorial Lecture in Melbourne, Australia, in August. Kimball’s lecture mixed history … Continued

Never Forget National Humiliation

October 2014

Review by Amb. (ret.) Joe O. Rogers Never Forget National Humiliation: Historical Memory in Chinese Politics and Foreign Relations, by Zheng Wang, New York: Columbia University Press, 2012, ISBN-13: 978-0231148900, 312 pp., $29.25 (Hardcover), $23.75 (Paperback), $13.99 (Kindle). Zheng Wang … Continued

Scattered Sand

October 2014

Review by Paul Levine We Are Like Scattered Sand: 200 Million Migrant Workers in China by Haiao-Hung Pai, Verso: New York and London, 2013, ISBN-13: 978-1781680902, 320 pp., $20.64 (Hardcover), $15.69 (Paperback),     $9.99 (Kindle). Anyone who has attended a … Continued

American Diplomacy Links 10.15.14

October 2014

“Building a Better Syrian Opposition Army: How and Why” Once off the table as U.S. policy, the idea of aiding a moderate Syrian opposition force has been brought to the fore by the rise of ISIS. This study explains how … Continued

Hard Choices

October 2014

Review by Amb. (ret.) David C. Litt Hard Choices by Hillary Rodham Clinton, New York: Simon and Schuster, 2014, ISBN-13: 978-1476751443, 656 pp., $20.91 (Harcover), $14.99 (Kindle). This review of Hard Choices, Hillary Clinton’s memoir of her time at the … Continued

American Diplomacy Links 9.17.14

September 2014

“The Virtue of Subtlety: A U.S. Strategy Against the Islamic State” The key to U.S. success will be doing as little as possible, forcing regional powers into the fray, and maintaining the balance of power in this coalition. By George … Continued

How Diplomacy Fails

September 2014

By Ambassador (ret.) Chas W. Freeman Video: http://hammer.ucla.edu/programs-events/2014/08/when-diplomacy-fails/ Text: http://chasfreeman.net/how-diplomacy-fails/ Review by Michael W. Cotter Ambassador Freeman is one of the distinguished American diplomats of the latter half of the 20th c. He served as a deputy assistant secretary of … Continued

World War I and the Failure of Diplomacy Two

September 2014

Reviews by Amb. (Ret.) Anthony C. E. Quainton [On this 100th anniversary of the beginning of  “the war to end all wars”, we will feature books that touch on that subject in this and future issues.   We begin with Ambassador … Continued

Capitalism (A Ghost Story)

September 2014

Review by Jon P. Dorschner Capitalism (A Ghost Story) by Arundhati Roy, Haymarket Books: Chicago, Illinois, 2014, ISBN 978-160846-385-5, 128 pp., $14.95 (Paperback), $9.99 (Kindle). Time Magazine recently named Arundhati Roy, a leading Indian intellectual and social critic, as one … Continued

Bribes, Bullets and Intimidation

September 2014

Review by Joe B. Johnson Bribes, Bullets and Intimidation: Drug Trafficking and the Law in Central America by Julie Marie Bunck and Michael Ross Fowler, The Pennsylvania State University Press, 2012, ISBN-13: 978-0271048666, 446 pp., $72 (Hardcover), $31.46 (Paperback), $9.99   … Continued