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Power of the Past : History and Statecraft (Paperback)

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This volume consists of 12 essays on the relationship between historical knowledge and the making of US foreign policy and how the study of the past can serve the present. Historians and policy makers from the US consider why policy makers use history, how policy has benefited or suffered, the potential paths for using history better and how it can aid in policy dilemmas, how scholars and policy makers can improve the relationship between knowledge and practice, and the limits of history for policy making. They discuss the ways history influences US foreign policy, using the examples of secretary of state Henry Kissinger, historical lessons from the Vietnam War, analogies between Munich and Vietnam and US policy during the Persian Gulf crisis and war, and the relationship between historical narratives and US-Japanese relations after World War II, followed by a section on how historical knowledge should inform better policy, including America's Cold War-era strategy of containment, the history of the National Security Council during the Reagan administration and William Clark's management, humanitarian military intervention, and combating human trafficking. The final section has insights from policy makers on lessons from US responses to the wars in Yugoslavia as applied to interventions in Afghanistan and Libya, the policy initiatives of the George W. Bush administration, and the kinds of lessons history actually offers. Annotation ©2016 Ringgold, Inc., Portland, OR (protoview.com)

Leading scholars and policymakers explore how history influences foreign policy and offer insights on how the study of the past can more usefully serve the present.

History, with its insights, analogies, and narratives, is central to the ways that the United States interacts with the world. Historians and policymakers, however, rarely engage one another as effectively or fruitfully as they might. This book bridges that divide, bringing together leading scholars and policymakers to address the essential questions surrounding the history-policy relationship. Chapters include:

· Mark Lawrence on the numerous, and often contradictory, historical lessons that American observers have drawn from the Vietnam War.

· H. W. Brands on the role of analogies in U.S. policy during the Persian Gulf crisis and war of 199091.

· Jeremi Suri on Henry Kissinger's powerful use of history.

· James Steinberg on how various forms of history informed U.S. responses to the Balkan wars of the 1990s.

· Peter Feaver and William Inboden on the roles that historical knowledge and analogies played in several key policy initiatives undertaken during their time at the National Security Council from 2005 to 2007.

· Philip Zelikow, former executive director of the 9/11 Commission, offers a broad and rich discussion of what kinds of lessons history actually offers.

Number of Pages: 327
Genre: Political Science
Sub-Genre: International Relations / Diplomacy, Political Freedom / International Security, International Relations / General
Format: Paperback
Publisher: Brookings Inst Pr
Language: English
Street Date: November 30, 2015
TCIN: 46767165
UPC: 9780815727125
Item Number (DPCI): 247-51-7844
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