2019 War on the Rocks Holiday Reading List by WOTR Staff
In recent months, waves of protests have rocked first Sudan and Egypt and now Iraq and Lebanon. To understand the waves of instability buffeting the region, it is necessary to understand shifting regional debates across the Middle East. In a newly released chapter from the forthcoming book "Seven Pillars: What Really Causes Instability in the Middle East?" AEI's Michael Rubin examines notions of legitimacy in the Arab world and explores how divergences in Middle Eastern and Western concepts of legitimacy have contributed to both regional and local instability on the one hand and misguided US and European policies on the other. Read the full chapter here.
Why liberalism works: A long-read Q&A with Deirdre McCloskey
James Pethokoukis | AEIdeas
You Can Trust Chinese Communists To Be Brutal Communists
cited Frank Dikötter via News Max
This month Red Chinese leaders celebrated the 70th anniversary of Mao Zedong’s bloody victory over nationalist leader Chiang Kai-shek in 1949.
How To Be A Dictator By Frank Diktter Review - The Cult Of Personality
featuring Frank Dikötter via The Guardian
Charisma, a lust for power, an absence of principles … what links Mao, Mussolini, Stalin, Hitler and other 20th-century dictators?
Frank Dikotter: Inside The Dictator's Mind
interview with Frank Dikötter via ABC Radio
Hoover Institution fellow Frank Dikotter discusses his book How to Be a Dictator: The Cult of Personality in the Twentieth Century.
Books Of The Year
mentioning Frank Dikötter via New Statesman America
Our friends and contributors choose their favorite reading of 2019
'How To Be A Dictator' Review: A Poetics For Tyrants
by Tunku Varadarajan featuring Frank Dikötter via The Wall Street Journal
A dictator cannot lead through oppression alone.
The Lost Art of Deterrence Education
By Curtis McGiffin, National Institute for Public Policy: "The NDS and NPR have objectively described a twenty-first century world of near-peer competition that combines Cold War-like hostility with the hasty proliferation of novel technology, while also demanding a “flexible, tailored nuclear deterrent strategy.”"
'A Time to Build: From Family and Community to Congress and the Campus, How Recommitting to Our Institutions Can Revive the American Dream'
Yuval Levin | Basic Books
Now is not a time to tear down, but rather to build and rebuild by committing ourselves to the institutions around us.
On War and National Interests
By Anthony Cowden, RealClearDefense: Meanwhile, somewhere in a Joint Professional Military Education (JPME) classroom…
The Provocations of Camille Paglia
The maverick critic and scholar has championed great art, defended free speech, and offered groundbreaking analysis of popular culture.
HEATHER MAC DONALD
A Platform of Urban Decline
Democratic presidential candidates believe America is racist, yet they ignore the evidence on crime and ensure that racial disparities persist.
City Talks: Jonathan Rodden On The Deep Roots Of The Urban-Rural Political Divide
interview with Jonathan Rodden via Centre for Cities
Hoover Institution fellow Jonathan Rodden discusses his book Why Cities Lose: The Deep Roots of the Urban-Rural Political Divide, as well as the origins of America’s urban-rural political divide and how economic geography shapes elections – both in the USA and beyond.
A Renaissance Runs Through It
What Pittsburgh’s latest comeback tells us about urban revitalization
The Ghosts Of Past Wars Live On In A Critical Archive
mentioning Hoover Institution via War on the Rocks
The United States will soon deploy soldiers to Afghanistan born after the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001. Next August will mark the 30th anniversary of Iraq’s invasion of Kuwait, along with the subsequent American-led military buildup leading to Operation Desert Storm in January 1991. The American military has been directly engaged in the “greater Middle East” since. For the people of Afghanistan and Iraq, the experience of war has extended longer, with this December marking the 40th anniversary of the Soviet Union’s invasion of Afghanistan and next September the same for Iraq’s invasion of Iran.
War Books: The Commander and the Staff
By Nick Bono, Modern War Institute: "There are plenty of commander-centric reading lists and even more for executives operating in the private sector. The authority of command should not be understated, but the organization following the commander bears some responsibility for the effectiveness of the unit."
The 2019 War on the Rocks Summer Fiction Reading List by WOTR Staff
War Books: Summer Reading List
By John Amble, Modern War Institute: "One of Japan’s largest warships, the helicopter carrier Izumo, offers a glimpse of where its military is headed: For the first time, troops from a newly formed amphibious brigade of Japan’s army participated in an extended naval deployment."
George Will's Guide To Conserving The Founders' Liberalism
by Peter Berkowitz via Real Clear Politics
Patrick Deneen’s disdainful review last month in the Washington Post of George Will’s splendid new book, “The Conservative Sensibility,” reasserts fashionable misconceptions about liberalism, conservatism, and America. The review — and, more importantly, the book — provide an occasion to clarify the character of the conservatism that takes its bearings from the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution, and from the ideas about human nature and freedom that undergird them.
The Economics of Religion
A new book explores how faith motivates productivity.
Promise and Waste
George Packer’s absorbing biography of diplomat Richard Holbrooke
Living to Regret
A new book reveals the moral legacy of the Troubles in Northern Ireland.
By Jack Norton, Aakriti Bachhawat & Malcolm Davis, The Strategist (ASPI): "Global thermonuclear war is ‘a strange game’. As the line from the 1983 movie War Games goes, ‘the only winning move is not to play’. But The Drive notes that the movie (one of tech geek’s favourites) also had a huge impact on US President Ronald Reagan’s thinking on cyber warfare and resulted in the first presidential directive on cybersecurity."
War Books: Intelligence, Forecasting, and Modern War
By Adam Maisel, Modern War Institute: "Alec Ross, The Industries of the Future - Ross served as a senior adviser to the State Department on innovation and his book envisions the generally positive effects of five key areas in technological advancement: robotics, genomics, the increased importance of big data and analytics, the rise of cryptocurrencies, and the importance of the cyber domain."
Joseph Bosco writes: This past week at the Wilson Center’s Kissinger Institute, Henry Kissinger’s former associates met to discuss “Kissinger on Kissinger,” an oral history by the former secretary of State. […]But the reprise of Kissinger’s diplomatic feats suffers from historical myopia. Roy asserted, for example, that “The breakthrough to China … really was a turning point in the Cold War,” inducing Moscow to enter Strategic Arms Limitation Talks.[…] In fact, however, the détente period brought heightened Cold War tensions, Soviet global advances, and a near-nuclear confrontation during the 1973 Yom Kippur War. – The Hill
In Search of the Lost Nation
Michael Brendan Dougherty explores the meaning of fatherhood in Ireland and America.
Understanding Trump Country
by Rachel Lu
Tim Carney shows that the decline of the Rust Belt has cultural and moral elements that economics alone cannot adequately explain. Read More »
A New Birth of Intellectual Freedom on the Right
by Mark C. Henrie
Before Trump, conservative orthodoxy ruled right-of-center philanthropy. It now needs an agenda based on what gave rise to his presidency. Read More »
Hanson recently shared insights from the book in a Hoover.org interview, and video from his recent Hoover Institution book event can be viewed here.
Timothy Carney’s “Alienated America” & the Future of the American Dream
By Kevin Roberts on May 16, 2019 10:00 pm
Timothy Carney’s book "Alienated America" tackles a crucial question that too few policymakers and news commentators even bother asking anymore: What is at the root of America’s contemporary cultural and social malaise? The short answer, according to Mr. Carney, is the deterioration of civil society. Alienated America: Why Some Places Thrive While Other Places Collapse, ...
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Papal Household Theologian on sparking faith, returning to basics of Catholic life
By Paul Senz on May 14, 2019 12:29 am
In the tradition of St. Thomas Aquinas, members of the Dominican Order tend to be particularly well-versed in philosophy, theology, scholasticism, and the great intellectual tradition of the Church. This is part of the reason [...]
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De Gaulle, Re-Founder of French Republicanism
by Will Morrisey
The man the French consider the most important figure in their long history, with Napoleon a distant runner-up. Read More »
DANIEL J. MAHONEY
Lion of France
A new, and likely definitive, biography of Charles de Gaulle