Foreign Service: Five Decades on the Frontlines of American Diplomacy

Foreign Service: Five Decades on the Frontlines of American Diplomacy


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A behind the scenes look at 50 years of US diplomacy.

From Vietnam in the 1960s to Afghanistan in this decade, James Dobbins was on the frontlines of American diplomacy and worked to advance U.S. national interests in some of the world’s most difficult and troubled arenas.

In Foreign Service, Dobbins takes the reader behind the scenes at the Vietnam peace talks, the darkest days of the Cold War, the reunification of Germany, the collapse of the Soviet Union, and the U.S. military interventions in Afghanistan, Bosnia, Haiti, Kosovo, and Somalia. He provides a thoughtful insider’s account of all these ventures, analyzes the sources of both success and failure, and provides incisive portraits of many of the chief actors.

Presidents Clinton, Bush, and Obama turned repeatedly to Dobbins as a diplomatic trouble-shooter with the right instincts and experience to help find solutions for seemingly irresolvable problems. Foreign Service vividly captures why they did.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780815730040
Publisher: Brookings Institution Press
Publication date: 06/20/2017
Pages: 336
Sales rank: 647,480
Product dimensions: 6.20(w) x 8.70(h) x 1.30(d)

About the Author

James Dobbins served as Assistant Secretary of State for Europe, Special Assistant to the President for the Western Hemisphere, Special Adviser to the President and Secretary of State for the Balkans, Ambassador to the European Community, and special envoy for Somalia, Haiti, Bosnia, and Kosovo, and Afghanistan. He holds the Distinguished Chair for Diplomacy and Security at the RAND Corporation.

Table of Contents


Foreword, Robert B. Zoellick


1. Pacific Youth

2. Apprenticeship

3. The Seventh Floor

4. Provincial Interlude

5. On Turtle Bay

6. Upstairs

7. Downstairs

8. Postgraduate Studies

9. Missile Diplomacy

10. A Small Town in Germany

11. A World Reordered

12. And Disordered Anew

13. From Community to Union

14. Black Hawk Down

15. Entering Haiti

16. Exiting Haiti

17. A Lesson in Divided Government

18. Hemispheric Interlude

19. War in Kosovo

20. Peace in Kosovo

21. The Fall of Milosevic

22. Mending Transatlantic Relations

23, A New Administration

24. Another War, Another Assignment

25. Losing the Peace: Afghanistan

26. Losing the Peace: Iraq

27. Afghanistan Again

28. Reflections


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