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America S War For The Greater Middle East by Andrew J. Bacevich
In an idyllic community of wealthy California families, new teacher Molly Nicoll becomes intrigued by the hidden lives of her privileged students. Unknown to Molly, a middle school tragedy in which they were all complicit continues to reverberate for ohero kids- Nick, the brilliant scam artist; Emma, the gifted dancer and party girl; Dave, the B student who strives to meet his parents' expectations; Calista, the hippie outcast who hides her intelligence for reasons of her own. Theirs is a world in which every action may become public-postable, shareable, indelible. With the rare talent that transforms teenage dramas into compelling and urgent fiction, Lindsey Lee Johnson makes vivid a modern adolescence lived in the gleam of the virtual, but rich with the sorrow, passion, and beauty of life in any time, and at any age. Advance praise for The Most Dangerous Place on EarthoIn sharp and assured prose, roving between characters, Lindsey Lee Johnson plumbs the terrifying depths of a half-dozen ultra-privileged California high school kids. I read it in two chilling gulps. It's a phenomenal first book, a compassionate Less Than Zerofor the digital age.o-Anthony Doerr, #1 New York Timesbestselling author of All the Light We Cannot SeeoAn astonishing debut novel, Lindsey Lee Johnson's The Most Dangerous Place on Earthplunges the reader into the fraught power dynamics between (and among) high school teachers and students with both nuance and fearlessness. With a stunning constellation of characters' voices and a fiercely compelling story, it's impossible to put down, or to forget.o-Megan Abbott, author of You Will Know Meand Dare MeoThe Most Dangerous Place on Earthis a deftly composed mosaic of adolescence in the modern age, frightening and compelling in its honesty. . . . A terrific debut, and one that I didn't want to put down.o-Julia Pierpont, New York Timesbestselling author of Among the Ten Thousand ThingsoIn her superb first novel, The Most Dangerous Place on Earth, Lindsey Lee Johnson deftly illuminates a certain strain of privileged American adolescence and the existential minefield these kids are forced to navigate. Elegantly constructed and beautifully written, it reads like Jane Austen for this anxious era.o-Seth Greenland, author of I Regret Everything and The Angry BuddhistFrom the Hardcover edition.
The Generals by Thomas E. Ricks
A New York Times bestseller! An epic history of the decline of American military leadership—from the bestselling author of Fiasco and Churchill and Orwell. While history has been kind to the American generals of World War II—Marshall, Eisenhower, Patton, and Bradley—it has been less kind to the generals of the wars that followed, such as Koster, Franks, Sanchez, and Petraeus. In The Generals, Thomas E. Ricks sets out to explain why that is. In chronicling the widening gulf between performance and accountability among the top brass of the U.S. military, Ricks tells the stories of great leaders and suspect ones, generals who rose to the occasion and generals who failed themselves and their soldiers. In Ricks’s hands, this story resounds with larger meaning: about the transmission of values, about strategic thinking, and about the difference between an organization that learns and one that fails.
The Greater Middle East In Global Politics by Mehdi Amineh
This anthology unites in one volume two studies of the Greater Middle East in global politics – each conceptual and empirical. First, it is a historical-comparative study of politics and societies in selected Greater Middle Eastern countries. Second, it is an empirical case study of states and societies of the Greater Middle East in global politics.
Breach Of Trust by Andrew J. Bacevich
A blistering critique of the gulf between America's soldiers and the society that sends them off to war, from the bestselling author of The Limits of Power and Washington Rules The United States has been "at war" in Iraq and Afghanistan for more than a decade. Yet as war has become normalized, a yawning gap has opened between America's soldiers and veterans and the society in whose name they fight. For ordinary citizens, as former secretary of defense Robert Gates has acknowledged, armed conflict has become an "abstraction" and military service "something for other people to do." In Breach of Trust, bestselling author Andrew J. Bacevich takes stock of the separation between Americans and their military, tracing its origins to the Vietnam era and exploring its pernicious implications: a nation with an abiding appetite for war waged at enormous expense by a standing army demonstrably unable to achieve victory. Among the collateral casualties are values once considered central to democratic practice, including the principle that responsibility for defending the country should rest with its citizens. Citing figures as diverse as the martyr-theologian Dietrich Bonhoeffer and the marine-turned-anti-warrior Smedley Butler, Breach of Trust summons Americans to restore that principle. Rather than something for "other people" to do, national defense should become the business of "we the people." Should Americans refuse to shoulder this responsibility, Bacevich warns, the prospect of endless war, waged by a "foreign legion" of professionals and contractor-mercenaries, beckons. So too does bankruptcy—moral as well as fiscal.
The New American Militarism by Andrew J. Bacevich
In this provocative book, Andrew Bacevich warns of a dangerous dual obsession that has taken hold of Americans, conservatives, and liberals alike. It is a marriage of militarism and utopian ideology--of unprecedented military might wed to a blind faith in the universality of American values. This mindset, the author warns, invites endless war and the ever-deepening militarization of U.S. policy. It promises not to perfect but to pervert American ideals and to accelerate the hollowing out of American democracy. As it alienates others, it will leave the United States increasingly isolated. It will end in bankruptcy, moral as well as economic, and in abject failure. With The New American Militarism, which has been updated with a new Afterword, Bacevich examines the origins and implications of this misguided enterprise. He shows how American militarism emerged as a reaction to the Vietnam War. Various groups in American society--soldiers, politicians on the make, intellectuals, strategists, Christian evangelicals, even purveyors of pop culture--came to see the revival of military power and the celebration of military values as the antidote to all the ills besetting the country as a consequence of Vietnam and the 1960s. The upshot, acutely evident in the aftermath of 9/11, has been a revival of vast ambitions and certainty, this time married to a pronounced affinity for the sword. Bacevich urges us to restore a sense of realism and a sense of proportion to U.S. policy. He proposes, in short, to bring American purposes and American methods--especially with regard to the role of the military--back into harmony with the nation's founding ideals.
Crescent Of Crisis by Ivo H. Daalder
The greater Middle East region is beset by a crescent of crises, stretching from Pakistan through Afghanistan, Iran, and Iraq to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Together, these five crises pose the most pressing security challenges faced by the United States and its European allies—ranging from terrorism and weapons proliferation to the rise of fundamentalism and the lack of democracy. Until now, Europe and the United States have approached these issues (indeed, the Middle East as a whole) in differing ways, with little effective coordination of policy. In fact, how best to deal with the greater Middle East has emerged as one of the most contentious issues in U.S.-European relations. The need for a common approach to the region is more evident than ever. This book brings together some of Europe and America's leading scholars and practitioners in an effort to develop a common approach to resolving the five major crises in the region. European and American authors provide succinct and fact-filled overviews of the different crises, describe U.S. and European perspectives on the way forward, and suggest ways in which the United States and Europe can better cooperate. In the conclusion, the editors synthesize the different suggestions into a roadmap for U.S.-European cooperation for addressing the challenges of the Greater Middle East in the years ahead. Contributors include Stephen Cohen (Brookings Institution), James Dobbins (RAND), Toby Dodge (University of London), Martin Indyk (Saban Center at Brookings), Kenneth Pollack (Saban Center at Brookings), Jean-Luc Racine (Center for the Study of India and South Asia), Barnett Rubin (New York University), Yezid Sayigh (University of Cambridge), and Bruno Tertrais (Fondation pour la Recherche Stratégique).
Losing The Long Game by Philip H. Gordon
The definitive account of how regime change in the Middle East has proven so tempting to American policymakers for decades—and why it always seems to go wrong. "Must reading—by someone who saw it first-hand—for all interested in America’s foreign policy and its place in the world.” —Robin Wright Since the end of World War II, the United States has set out to oust governments in the Middle East on an average of once per decade—in places as diverse as Iran, Iraq, Afghanistan (twice), Egypt, Libya, and Syria. The reasons for these interventions have also been extremely diverse, and the methods by which the United States pursued regime change have likewise been highly varied, ranging from diplomatic pressure alone to outright military invasion and occupation. What is common to all the operations, however, is that they failed to achieve their ultimate goals, produced a range of unintended and even catastrophic consequences, carried heavy financial and human costs, and in many cases left the countries in question worse off than they were before. Philip H. Gordon's Losing the Long Game is a thorough and riveting look at the U.S. experience with regime change over the past seventy years, and an insider’s view on U.S. policymaking in the region at the highest levels. It is the story of repeated U.S. interventions in the region that always started out with high hopes and often the best of intentions, but never turned out well. No future discussion of U.S. policy in the Middle East will be complete without taking into account the lessons of the past, especially at a time of intense domestic polarization and reckoning with America's standing in world.
American Empire by Andrew J. BACEVICH
In a challenging, provocative book, Andrew Bacevich reconsiders the assumptions and purposes governing the exercise of American global power. Examining the presidencies of George H. W. Bush and Bill Clinton--as well as George W. Bush's first year in office--he demolishes the view that the United States has failed to devise a replacement for containment as a basis for foreign policy. He finds instead that successive post-Cold War administrations have adhered to a well-defined "strategy of openness." Motivated by the imperative of economic expansionism, that strategy aims to foster an open and integrated international order, thereby perpetuating the undisputed primacy of the world's sole remaining superpower. Moreover, openness is not a new strategy, but has been an abiding preoccupation of policymakers as far back as Woodrow Wilson. Although based on expectations that eliminating barriers to the movement of trade, capital, and ideas nurtures not only affluence but also democracy, the aggressive pursuit of openness has met considerable resistance. To overcome that resistance, U.S. policymakers have with increasing frequency resorted to force, and military power has emerged as never before as the preferred instrument of American statecraft, resulting in the progressive militarization of U.S. foreign policy. Neither indictment nor celebration, American Empire sees the drive for openness for what it is--a breathtakingly ambitious project aimed at erecting a global imperium. Large questions remain about that project's feasibility and about the human, financial, and moral costs that it will entail. By penetrating the illusions obscuring the reality of U.S. policy, this book marks an essential first step toward finding the answers. Table of Contents: Preface Introduction 1. The Myth of the Reluctant Superpower 2. Globalization and Its Conceits 3. Policy by Default 4. Strategy of Openness 5. Full Spectrum Dominance 6. Gunboats and Gurkhas 7. Rise of the Proconsuls 8. Different Drummers, Same Drum 9. War for the Imperium Notes Acknowledgments Index Reviews of this book: [A] straightforward "critical interpretation of American statecraft in the 1990s"...he is straightforward, too, in establishing where he stands on the political spectrum about US foreign policy...Bacevich insists that there are no differences in the key assumptions governing the foreign policy of the administrations of Bush I, Clinton, and Bush II--and this will certainly be the subject of passionate debate...Bacevich's argument persuades...by means of engaging prose as well as the compelling and relentless accumulation of detail...Bring[s] badly needed [perspective] to troubled times. --James A. Miller, Boston Globe Reviews of this book: For everyone there's Andrew Bacevich's American Empire, an intelligent, elegantly written, highly convincing polemic that demonstrates how the motor of US foreign policy since independence has been the need to guarantee economic growth. --Dominick Donald, The Guardian Reviews of this book: Andrew Bacevich's remarkably clear, cool-headed, and enlightening book is an expression of the United States' unadmitted imperial primacy. It's as bracing as a plunge into a clear mountain lake after exposure to the soporific internationalist conventional wisdom...Bacevich performs an invaluable service by restoring missing historical context and perspective to today's shallow, hand-wringing discussion of Sept. 11...Bacevich's brave, intelligent book restores our vocabulary to debate anew the United States' purpose in the world. --Richard J. Whalen, Across the Board Reviews of this book: To say that Andrew Bacevich's American Empire is a truly realistic work of realism is therefore to declare it not only a very good book, but also a pretty rare one. The author, a distinguished former soldier, combines a tough-minded approach to the uses of military force with a grasp of American history that is both extremely knowledgeable and exceptionally clear-sighted. This book is indispensable for anyone who wants to understand the background to U.S. world hegemony at the start of the 21st century; and it is also a most valuable warning about the dangers into which the pursuit and maintenance of this hegemony may lead America. --Anatol Levin, Washington Monthly Reviews of this book: American Empire is an immensely thoughtful book. Its reflections go beyond the narrow realm of U.S. security policy and demonstrate a deep understanding of American history and culture. --David Hastings Dunn, Political Studies Review I have long suspected our nation's triumphs and trials owed much to the American genius for solipsism and self-deception. Bacevich has convinced me of it by holding up a mirror to self-styled idealists and realists alike. Read all the books you want about the post-Cold War, post-9/11 world, just be sure American Empire is one of them. --Walter A. McDougall, Pulitzer Prize-winning historian, University of Pennsylvania This deeply informed, impressive polemical book is precisely what Americans, in and outside of the academy, needed before 9/11 and need now even more. Crisp, lively, biting prose will help them enjoy it. Among its many themes are hubris, hegemony, and the fatuousness of claims by the American military that they can now achieve 'transparency' in war-making. --Michael S. Sherry, Northwestern University The United States could not possibly have an empire, Americans think. But we do. And with verve and telling insight Andrew Bacevich shows how it works and what it means. --Ronald Steel, author of Temptations of a Superpower: America's Foreign Policy after the Cold War
War And Conflict In The Middle East And North Africa by Ariel I. Ahram
For much of the last half century, the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) has seemed the outlier in global peace. Today Iraq, Libya, Israel/Palestine, Yemen, and Syria are not just countries, but synonyms for prolonged and brutal wars. But why is MENA so exceptionally violent? More importantly, can it change? Exploring the causes and consequences of wars and conflicts in this troubled region, Ariel Ahram helps readers answer these questions. In Part I, Ahram shows how MENA’s conflicts evolved with the formation of its states. Violence varied from civil wars and insurgencies to traditional interstate conflicts and affected some countries more frequently than others. The strategies rulers employed to stay in power constrained how they recruited, trained, and equipped their armies. Part II explores dynamics that trap the region in conflict—oil dependence, geopolitical interference, and embedded identity cleavages. The catastrophic wars of the 2010s reflect the confounding effects of these traps, culminating in state collapse and intervention from the US and Russia, as well as regional powers like Iran, Saudi Arabia, and the UAE. Finally, Ahram considers the possibilities of peace, highlighting the disjuncture between local peacebuilding and national and internationally-backed mediation. War and Conflict in the Middle East and North Africa will be an essential resource for students of peace and security studies and MENA politics, and anyone wanting to move beyond headlines and soundbites to understand the historical and social roots of MENA’s conflicts.
Making The Unipolar Moment by Hal Brands
In the late 1970s, the United States often seemed to be a superpower in decline. Battered by crises and setbacks around the globe, its post–World War II international leadership appeared to be draining steadily away. Yet just over a decade later, by the early 1990s, America’s global primacy had been reasserted in dramatic fashion. The Cold War had ended with Washington and its allies triumphant; democracy and free markets were spreading like never before. The United States was now enjoying its "unipolar moment"—an era in which Washington faced no near-term rivals for global power and influence, and one in which the defining feature of international politics was American dominance. How did this remarkable turnaround occur, and what role did U.S. foreign policy play in causing it? In this important book, Hal Brands uses recently declassified archival materials to tell the story of American resurgence. Brands weaves together the key threads of global change and U.S. policy from the late 1970s through the early 1990s, examining the Cold War struggle with Moscow, the rise of a more integrated and globalized world economy, the rapid advance of human rights and democracy, and the emergence of new global challenges like Islamic extremism and international terrorism. Brands reveals how deep structural changes in the international system interacted with strategies pursued by Jimmy Carter, Ronald Reagan, and George H. W. Bush to usher in an era of reinvigorated and in many ways unprecedented American primacy. Making the Unipolar Moment provides an indispensable account of how the post–Cold War order that we still inhabit came to be.