The Cold War’s Lessons for U.S.-China Diplomacy

Diplomacy, Policies

The Cold War’s Lessons for U.S.-China Diplomacy

In 1948, President Harry Truman’s diplomats approached representatives of Joseph Stalin with an offer to discuss the many issues dividing the U.S. and the Soviet Union. The Soviet dictator responded with a simple “ha ha,” and 40 years of Cold War ensued.

That episode seemed newly resonant earlier this month, when a meeting between American and Chinese officials in Alaska turned into a televised airing of grievances. This tussle in the tundra signaled that there will be no “reset” between Washington and Beijing; a period of high-tempo competition is upon us. But Cold War history shows that diplomacy can still play a critical role, if U.S. officials view negotiation as a tool of competition rather than a replacement for it.

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While Europe Slept: How Radical Islam is Destroying the West from Within

Immigration, Policies

While Europe Slept: How Radical Islam is Destroying the West from Within

The struggle for the soul of Europe today is every bit as dire and consequential as it was in the 1930s. Then, in Weimar, Germany, the center did not hold, and the light of civilization nearly went out. Today, the continent has entered yet another “Weimar moment.” Will Europeans rise to the challenge posed by radical Islam, or will they cave in once again to the extremists?

As an American living in Europe since 1998, Bruce Bawer has seen this problem up close. Across the continent—in Amsterdam, Oslo, Copenhagen, Paris, Berlin, Madrid, and Stockholm—he encountered large, rapidly expanding Muslim enclaves in which women were oppressed and abused, homosexuals persecuted and killed, “infidels” threatened and vilified, Jews demonized and attacked, barbaric traditions (such as honor killing and forced marriage) widely practiced, and freedom of speech and religion firmly repudiated.

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Russian Thinkers (Penguin Philosophy)

Demographic, Russia

Russian Thinkers (Penguin Philosophy)

The theme that links the essays in this book, written over 30 years, is the phenomenon of the Russian intelligentsia, which Isaiah Berlin describes as “the largest single Russian contribution to social change in the world”. The author brings to his portraits of Russian thinkers – and his subject range is as diverse as may be expected – a unique perception of the social and political circumstances that produced men such as Herzen, Bakunin, Turgenev, Belinsky and Tolstoy

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