A harrowing exploration of the collapse of American diplomacy and the abdication of global leadership, by the winner of the 2018 Pulitzer Prize in Public Service.
US foreign policy is undergoing a dire transformation, forever changing America’s place in the world. Institutions of diplomacy and development are bleeding out after deep budget cuts; the diplomats who make America’s deals and protect its citizens around the world are walking out in droves. Offices across the State Department sit empty, while abroad the military-industrial complex has assumed the work once undertaken by peacemakers. We’re becoming a nation that shoots first and asks questions later.
In an astonishing journey from the corridors of power in Washington, DC, to some of the most remote and dangerous places on earthAfghanistan, Somalia, and North Korea among themacclaimed investigative journalist Ronan Farrow illuminates one of the most consequential and poorly understood changes in American history. His firsthand experience as a former State Department official affords a personal look at some of the last standard bearers of traditional statecraft, including Richard Holbrooke, who made peace in Bosnia and died while trying to do so in Afghanistan.
Drawing on recently unearthed documents, and richly informed by rare interviews with whistle-blowers, a warlord, and policymakersincluding every living former secretary of state from Henry Kissinger to Hillary Clinton to Rex TillersonWar on Peace makes a powerful case for an endangered profession. Diplomacy, Farrow argues, has declined after decades of political cowardice, shortsightedness, and outright malicebut it may just offer America a way out of a world at war.
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About the Author
Ronan Farrow is an investigative journalist who writes for The New Yorker and makes documentaries for HBO. He has been an anchor and reporter at MSNBC and NBC News, and his writing has appeared in publications including The Wall Street Journal and The Washington Post. He is a winner of the Pulitzer Prize, the George Polk Award, and the National Magazine Award, among other commendations, and has been named one of Time magazine's 100 Most Influential People. He is also an attorney and former State Department official. He lives in New York City.
Table of Contents
Prologue: Mahogany Row Massacre ix
Part I The Last Diplomats
1 American Myths 3
2 Lady Taliban 7
3 Dick 15
4 The Mango Case 21
5 The Other Haqqani Network 32
6 Duplicity 38
7 The Frat House 46
8 Mission: Impossible 53
9 Walking on Glass 68
10 Farmer Holbrooke 78
11 A Little Less Conversation 84
12 A-Rod 99
13 Promise Me You'll End The War 111
14 The Wheels Come Off The Bus 126
15 The Memo 137
16 The Real Thing 144
Part II Shoot First, Ask Questions Never
17 General Rule 155
18 Dostum: He Is Telling The Truth and Discouraging all Lies 164
19 White Beast 203
20 The Shortest Spring 222
21 Midnight At The Ranch 237
Part III Present at the Destruction
22 The State Of The Secretary 257
23 The Mosquito And The Sword 268
24 Meltdown 279
Epilogue: The Tool Of First Resort 295