My Review of “The Eastern Question” in New York Journal of Books (October 27, 2015)

October 27, 2015

Hi All —

Not posting much lately – busy with teaching a class at our local Armstrong State University, serving on the Board of the Uweza Foundation, and an occasional book review for the New York Journal of Books; the most recent of which is of “The Eastern Question” by Ted Danforth published today, October 27, 2015.

The book is an attempt to explain long-standing political tensions leading to 9/11. Mr. Danforth  sees a direct linear connection between “the Huns, Goths, Arabs, Mongols, Turks, Russians . . . and now Jihadi.” According to Mr. Danforth, each of those geopolitical actors have, in their turn, posed direct threats to the “West.” Indeed, “for the West, the East has always been a question: It’s where trouble comes from.” Hence “The Eastern Question.”

If you would like to read my entire review of that book, please click here “The Eastern Question”

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Review of “All In: The Education of General David Petraeus

January 24, 2012

Apologies yet again for not having posted for awhile; expect continuation of the series on relationships between the UN aid agencies and World Bank soon.

In the meantime, you might be interested in my review, published today by the New York Journal of Books, of  All In: The Education of General David Petraeus by Paula Broadwell and Vernon Loeb. Just click on http://www.nyjournalofbooks.com/review/all-education-general-david-petraeus .

This is another book that I really wanted to like and learn from, but again was sorely disappointed. O’ well. My 3rd review of Wartime: An Idea, Its History, Its Consequences by Mary Dudziak for NYJB, to be published on February 7th, is much more favorable. Really, a very good book.


My Review of Peter Tomsen’s “The Wars of Afghanistan”

July 12, 2011

Apologies for not having posted for awhile — have been caught up in other work and an extended vacation. But do expect my next substantive post about the relationships between the UN aid agencies and World Bank to continue in August.

In the meantime, you might be interested in my review, published today by the New York Journal of Books, of Former United States’ Ambassador and U.S. Special Envoy on Afghanistan Peter Tomsen’s book The Wars of Afghanistan: Messianic Terrorism, Tribal Conflicts, and The Failures of Great Powers; just click on http://www.nyjournalofbooks.com/review/wars-afghanistan-messianic-terrorism-tribal-conflicts-and-failures-great-powers .

I really wanted to like and learn from Tomsen’s book, but was sorely disappointed. The negative tone of the review grew as I plowed through its very long intro and impossibly idealistic recommendations. The middle Part that presents what is in effect his personal diplomatic memoir is quite good, but not enough to justify the other 500 or so pages.


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