Finalist for the Pulitzer Prize in General Nonfiction
Winner of the Council on Foreign Relations' Arthur Ross Book Award
Winner of the Lionel Gelber Prize for Best Foreign Affairs Book
Winner of the Asia Society's Bernard Schwartz Book Award
Winner of the Cundill Prize for Historical Literature
Winner of the Society for Historians of American Foreign Relations' Robert H. Ferrell Book Prize
Winner of the Ramnath Goenka Award
A New York Times Notable Book
This magnificent history provides the first full account of Richard Nixon and Henry Kissinger's secret support for Pakistan in 1971 as it committed shocking atrocities in Bangladesh--which led to war between India and Pakistan, shaped the fate of Asia, and left major strategic consequences for the world today. Drawing on previously unheard White House tapes, recently declassified documents, and his own extensive investigative reporting, Gary Bass uncovers an astonishing unknown story of superpower brinkmanship, war, scandal, and conscience. Revelatory, authoritative, and compulsively readable, The Blood Telegram is a thrilling chronicle of a pivotal chapter in American foreign policy.
A new understanding of the post World War II era, showing what occurred when the British Empire wouldn't step aside for the rising American superpower--with global insights for today.
An enduring myth of the twentieth century is that the United States rapidly became a superpower in the years after World War II, when the British Empire--the greatest in history--was too wounded to maintain a global presence. In fact, Derek Leebaert argues in Grand Improvisation, the idea that a traditionally insular United States suddenly transformed itself into the leader of the free world is illusory, as is the notion that the British colossus was compelled to retreat. The United States and the U.K. had a dozen abrasive years until Washington issued a "declaration of independence" from British influence. Only then did America explicitly assume leadership of the world order just taking shape.
Leebaert's character-driven narrative shows such figures as Churchill, Truman, Eisenhower, and Kennan in an entirely new light, while unveiling players of at least equal weight on pivotal events. Little unfolded as historians believe: the Truman Doctrine and the Marshall Plan; the Korean War; America's descent into Vietnam. Instead, we see nonstop U.S. improvisation until America finally lost all caution and embraced obligations worldwide, a burden we bear today.
Understanding all of this properly is vital to understanding the rise and fall of superpowers, why we're now skeptical of commitments overseas, how the Middle East plunged into disorder, why Europe is fracturing, what China intends--and the ongoing perils to the U.S. world role.
Much has been written about the Cuban Missile Crisis a year later, but the Berlin Crisis of 1961 was more decisive in shaping the Cold War-and more perilous. It was in that hot summer that the Berlin Wall was constructed, which would divide the world for another twenty-eight years. Then two months later, and for the first time in history, American and Soviet fighting men and tanks stood arrayed against each other, only yards apart. One mistake, one nervous soldier, one overzealous commander-and the tripwire would be sprung for a war that could go nuclear in a heartbeat.
On one side was a young, untested U.S. president still reeling from the Bay of Pigs disaster and a humiliating summit meeting that left him grasping for ways to respond. It would add up to be one of the worst first-year foreign policy performances of any modern president. On the other side, a Soviet premier hemmed in by the Chinese, East Germans, and hardliners in his own government. With an all-important Party Congress approaching, he knew Berlin meant the difference not only for the Kremlin's hold on its empire-but for his own hold on the Kremlin.
Neither man really understood the other, both tried cynically to manipulate events. And so, week by week, they crept closer to the brink.
Based on a wealth of new documents and interviews, filled with fresh-sometimes startling-insights, written with immediacy and drama, Berlin 1961 is an extraordinary look at key events of the twentieth century, with powerful applications to these early years of the twenty-first.
Between the Confederacy and recognition by Great Britain stood one unlikely Englishman who hated the slave trade. His actions helped determine the fate of a nation.When Robert Bunch arrived in Charleston to take up the post of British consul in 1853, he was young and full of ambition, but even he couldn't have imagined the incredible role he would play in the history-making events to unfold. In an age when diplomats often were spies, Bunch's job included sending intelligence back to the British government in London. Yet as the United States threatened to erupt into Civil War, Bunch found himself plunged into a double life, settling into an amiable routine with his slavery-loving neighbors on the one hand, while working furiously to thwart their plans to achieve a new Confederacy. As secession and war approached, the Southern states found themselves in an impossible position. They knew that recognition from Great Britain would be essential to the survival of the Confederacy, and also that such recognition was likely to be withheld if the South reopened the Atlantic slave trade. But as Bunch meticulously noted from his perch in Charleston, secession's red-hot epicenter, that trade was growing. And as Southern leaders continued to dissemble publicly about their intentions, Bunch sent dispatch after secret dispatch back to the Foreign Office warning of the truth--that economic survival would force the South to import slaves from Africa in massive numbers. When the gears of war finally began to turn, and Bunch was pressed into service on an actual spy mission to make contact with the Confederate government, he found himself in the middle of a fight between the Union and Britain that threatened, in the boast of Secretary of State William Seward, to "wrap the world in flames." In this masterfully told story, Christopher Dickey introduces Consul Bunch as a key figure in the pitched battle between those who wished to reopen the floodgates of bondage and misery, and those who wished to dam the tide forever. Featuring a remarkable cast of diplomats, journalists, senators, and spies, Our Man in Charleston captures the intricate, intense relationship between great powers on the brink of war.
A riveting account of the watershed moment in America s dealings with China that forever altered the course of East-West relations
As 1945 opened, America was on surprisingly congenial terms with China s Communist rebels their soldiers treated their American counterparts as heroes, rescuing airmen shot down over enemy territory. Chinese leaders talked of a future in which American money and technology would help lift China out of poverty. Mao Zedong himself held friendly meetings with U.S. emissaries, vowing to them his intention of establishing an American-style democracy in China.
By year s end, however, cordiality had been replaced by chilly hostility and distrust. Chinese Communist soldiers were setting ambushes for American marines in north China; Communist newspapers were portraying the United States as an implacable imperialist enemy; civil war in China was erupting. The pattern was set for a quarter century of almost total Sino-American mistrust, with the devastating wars in Korea and Vietnam among the consequences.
Richard Bernstein here tells the incredible story of that year s sea change, brilliantly analyzing its many components, from ferocious infighting among U.S. diplomats, military leaders, and opinion makers to the complex relations between Mao and his patron, Stalin.
On the American side, we meet experienced China hands John Paton Davies and John Stewart Service, whose efforts at negotiation made them prey to accusations of Communist sympathy; FDR s special ambassador Patrick J. Hurley, a decorated general and self-proclaimed cowboy; and Time journalist, Henry Luce, whose editorials helped turn the tide of American public opinion. On the Chinese side, Bernstein reveals the ascendant Mao and his intractable counterpart, Nationalist leader Chiang Kai-shek; and the indispensable Zhou Enlai.
A tour de force of narrative history, China 1945 examines the first episode in which American power and good intentions came face-to-face with a powerful Asian revolutionary movement, and challenges familiar assumptions about the origins of modern Sino-American relations."
In the dark days between Hitler s invasion of Poland in September 1939 and Japan s attack on Pearl Harbor in December 1941, Franklin D. Roosevelt sent five remarkable men Sumner Welles, William Wild Bill Donovan, Harry Hopkins, Averell Harriman, and Wendell Willkie on dramatic and dangerous missions to Europe. The five envoys highly unorthodox missions took them into the middle of the war and exposed them to the leading figures of the age. Taken together, they plot the arc of America s transformation from a divided and hesitant middle power into a global leader. Drawing on vast archival research, Rendezvous with Destiny is narrative history at its most delightful, stirring, and important."
In the wake of Napoleon's disastrous Russian campaign of 1812, the French emperor's imperious grip on Europe began to weaken, raising the question of how the continent was to be reconstructed after his defeat. While the Treaty of Paris that followed Napoleon's exile in 1814 put an end to a quarter century of revolution and war in Europe, it left the future of the continent hanging in the balance.
Eager to negotiate a workable and lasting peace, the major powers--Britain, Austria, Prussia, and Russia--along with a host of lesser nations, began a series of committee sessions in Vienna: an eight-month-long carnival that combined political negotiations with balls, dinners, artistic performances, hunts, tournaments, picnics, and other sundry forms of entertainment for the thousands of aristocrats who had gathered in the Austrian capital. Although the Congress of Vienna resulted in an unprecedented level of stability in Europe, the price of peace would be high. Many of the crucial questions were decided on the battlefield or in squalid roadside cottages amid the vagaries of war. And the proceedings in Vienna itself were not as decorous as is usually represented.
Internationally bestselling author Adam Zamoyski draws on a wide range of original sources, which include not only official documents, private letters, diaries, and firsthand accounts, but also the reports of police spies and informers, to reveal the steamy atmosphere of greed and lust in which the new Europe was forged. Meticulously researched, masterfully told, and featuring a cast of some of the most influential and powerful figures in history, including Tsar Alexander, Metternich, Talleyrand, and the Duke of Wellington, Rites of Peace tells the story of these extraordinary events and their profound historical consequences.
A fresh, controversial, brilliantly written account of one of the epic dramas of the Cold War-and its lessons for today.
"History at its best." -Zbigniew Brzezinski
"Gripping, well researched, and thought-provoking, with many lessons for today." -Henry Kissinger
"Captures the drama with] the 'You are there' storytelling skills of a journalist and the analytical skills of the political scientist." - General Brent Scowcroft
In June 1961, Nikita Khrushchev called it "the most dangerous place on earth." He knew what he was talking about.
Much has been written about the Cuban Missile Crisis a year later, but the Berlin Crisis of 1961 was more decisive in shaping the Cold War-and more perilous. For the first time in history, American and Soviet fighting men and tanks stood arrayed against each other, only yards apart. One mistake, one overzealous commander-and the trip wire would be sprung for a war that would go nuclear in a heartbeat. On one side was a young, untested U.S. president still reeling from the Bay of Pigs disaster. On the other, a Soviet premier hemmed in by the Chinese, the East Germans, and hard-liners in his own government. Neither really understood the other, both tried cynically to manipulate events. And so, week by week, the dangers grew.
Based on a wealth of new documents and interviews, filled with fresh- sometimes startling-insights, written with immediacy and drama, "Berlin 1961" is a masterly look at key events of the twentieth century, with powerful applications to these early years of the twenty- first.
As Singapore enters its 50th year of independence, it is a good time to reflect on its past as well as look to the future. 50 Years of Singapore-Europe Relations: Celebrating Singapore's Connections with Europe is one such contribution to the wide collection of books commemorating Singapore's 50th birthday. The essays and articles in this edited volume capture historical moments, reveal the heartfelt wishes and thoughtful comments of Europeans who have made Singapore their home, chronicle some of the long-standing partnerships and ponder the future challenges of Singapore.This unique book contains a wide range of essays and articles reflecting on the strong connections that Singapore enjoys with Europe, not only at the official level, but also through the contributions that Europeans and European companies have made -- and continue to make -- which enrich Singaporean society. These essays provide a kaleidoscope of views on Singapore -- they explore how close ties and partnerships are forged between nations, how businesses see Singapore as a trustworthy partner and place to invest and establish roots, and, at a more personal level, the articles also present different perspectives on the strengths, and at times, the weaknesses of Singapore as viewed through the eyes of Europeans who live and work in Singapore and consider it as their home.In commemorating Singapore's 50th birthday, this book will add to the understanding of the richness and diversity of Singapore society, and help readers appreciate and reflect on how openness and connectivity have contributed to the success of Singapore in its first 50 years.