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Berlin 1961

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In June 1961, Nikita Khrushchev called Berlin "the most dangerous place on earth." He knew what he was talking about. Much has been written about the Cuban Missile Crisis a year later, but the Berlin Crisis of 1961 was more decisive in shaping the Cold War-and more perilous. It was in that hot summer that the Berlin Wall was constructed, which would divide the world for another twenty-eight years. Then two months later, and for the first time in history, American and Soviet fighting men and tanks stood arrayed against each other, only yards apart. One mistake, one nervous soldier, one overzealous commander-and the tripwire would be sprung for a war that could go nuclear in a heartbeat. On one side was a young, untested U.S. president still reeling from the Bay of Pigs disaster and a humiliating summit meeting that left him grasping for ways to respond. It would add up to be one of the worst first-year foreign policy performances of any modern president. On the other side, a Soviet premier hemmed in by the Chinese, East Germans, and hardliners in his own government. With an all-important Party Congress approaching, he knew Berlin meant the difference not only for the Kremlin's hold on its empire-but for his own hold on the Kremlin. Neither man really understood the other, both tried cynically to manipulate events. And so, week by week, they crept closer to the brink. Based on a wealth of new documents and interviews, filled with fresh-sometimes startling-insights, written with immediacy and drama, Berlin 1961 is an extraordinary look at key events of the twentieth century, with powerful applications to these early years of the twenty-first. Includes photographs
Published by Penguin on 05/10/2011
Book details: 608 pages.

Father/Land

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"A joy to read, in fact, a book so good one doesn't want it to end…. Kempe has written a piece of contemporary history as it should be written, in clear, engaging prose, and with judicious and sensible arguments. He has expertly handled the history of modern Germany, and given us insights into the German soul, including his own, that are crucial for an understanding of our modern world." -Kirkus Reviews "While Kempe does not sugarcoat Germany's current problems-its dyspeptic tolerance of immigrants, its pervasive bureaucracy and pedantry, the viciousness of the neo-Nazis-he argues that young Germans are right to no longer feel guilt for the Holocaust, as long as they learn its lessons." -Newsday "This is a fascinating and important book for anyone interested in the New and Old Germany. Fred Kempe, a distinguished foreign correspondent who has reported from many countries, turns in Father/Land to a different land-the mysteries and dark secrets of his German family that lay shrouded since the Third Reich. As painful as it is, this is a search that Kempe could no longer refuse if he was to bring some sense to his American character and German roots. As he interweaves his family's history with that of the German nation, his personal quest becomes a window not only into the German past but also into Germany's future." -Daniel Yergin, Pulitzer Prize-winning author of The Prize and coauthor of The Commanding Heights "Father/Land takes us on a spellbinding journey into Germany's past and present that begins with a musty olive trunk of old papers Fred Kempe inherited from his father. Inside that trunk lies the enduring mystery of the German people. Kempe's lively writing makes us see the paradox of modern Germany in small things-such as the trashcans at the Frankfurt airport or the personal quirks of Kempe's teammates on an amateur basketball team in Berlin. When Kempe finally discovers the horrific story that lies buried in his own family's history, the reader has the shock of experiencing the nightmare of Nazism from the inside." -David Ignatius, columnist, The Washington Post, and author of A Firing Offense "From a skilled American reporter's search for his German ancestry emerges a rich and rewarding portrait of a nation moving toward a promising future even as it remains tied to an inescapable past." -Ronald Steel, author of Walter Lippmann and the American Century "No foreign correspondent knows Germany as well as Frederick Kempe. He understands us sometimes better than we understand ourselves. His book is a refreshing, human look at where Germany is going, and it shows deep understanding for where it has been." -Volker RÃ1⁄4he, former defense minister of Germany Father/Land is a brilliant, unorthodox work of observation, insight, and commentary, a provocative book that will become required reading for anyone seeking to understand modern Germany. And it is something more. For in researching the past, Kempe discovered that the ghosts of Germany's past were not limited to others, that the contradictory threads of good and evil wove through his own family as well. After years of denying his own Germanness, he would have to confront it at last. During a pilgrimage to Germany with his father, Fred Kempe promised him he would write about modern Germany. Twelve years later, as a correspondent for The Wall Street Journal Europe, Kempe began a long journey of exploration in an attempt to answer questions that haunted him about his father's land: "How could such an apparently good people with such a rich cultural history have done such evil things? What causes evil, and what breeds good? After only half a century of reeducation and reconstruction, could the strength of German democracy and liberalism be as great as it seemed?" In this book, Fred Kempe delves into Germany's demographic change, its modern military, its youth, and America's role in the remaking of Germany after the war. He also looks at German pre-war history and how that history plays into shaping the future of the newly intact Germany. While searching modern Germany for the answers to his philosophical questions, Kempe finds himself in a parallel search for the roots of his own German heritage. Through seeking out relatives and searching documents that might enlighten him about the unspoken mysteries of his family's past, he discovers more than he bargained for, and at the same time learns a great deal about himself. The journey that began as the fulfillment of a promise to his father, led him as he had hoped, to a greater understanding his father's Heimat. In the last chapter of his book, Kempe calls modern Germany "America's Stepchild." He theorizes that Germans, because of their past atrocities, feel a great responsibility to their European neighbors as well as to the world. In their process of atonement, they have become a kinder and gentler people, while their strength remains. Their role as a world leader beckons them to heights to which they no longer aspire. Reaching great heights makes the world seem conquerable. This is the mistake they must avoid. Reaching out makes the world more united. This is the direction they know they must go.
Published by Indiana University Press on 05/17/2002
Book details: 352 pages.

Divorcing the Dictator

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Kempe recounts the history of the United States' relationship with Noriega from his recruitment by the CIA to his capture in 1990. He examines why and how the United States became involved with the Panamanian dictator and how the involvement has affected its standing in Latin America.
Published by I.B.Tauris on 08/20/1990
Book details: 469 pages.

Berlin 1961 Deluxe

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A breathtaking Deluxe eBook featuring forty-one videos from the NBC archive—including rare footage not seen in thirty years—a video introduction by Tom Brokaw and a detailed timeline of events in this brilliant account of one of the epic dramas of the Cold War. In June 1961, Nikita Khrushchev called Berlin “the most dangerous place in the world.” He knew what he was talking about. Much has been written about the Cuban Missile Crisis a year later, but the Berlin Crisis of 1961 was more decisive in shaping the Cold War—and more perilous. For the first time in history, American and Soviet fighting men and tanks stood arrayed against one another, only yards apart. One mistake, one overzealous commander—and the trip wire would be sprung for a war that would go nuclear in a heartbeat. On one side was a young, untested U.S. president still reeling from the Bay of Pigs disaster. On the other, was a Soviet premier hemmed in by the Chinese, East Germans, and hardliners in his own government. Neither really understood the other; both tried cynically to manipulate events. And so, week by week, the dangers grew. Based on a wealth of new documents and interviews, filled with fresh—sometimes startling—insights, written with immediacy and drama, Berlin 1961 Deluxe is a masterful look at key events of the twentieth century—with powerful applications to these early years of the twenty-first. Frederick Kempe is president and CEO of the Atlantic Council, and, previously, spent more than twenty-five years as a reporter, columnist, and editor for The Wall Street Journal. This is his fourth book. Kempe lives in Washington, D.C.
Published by Penguin on 05/10/2011
Book details: 608 pages.

The Smartest Places on Earth

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Published by Public Affairs on 03/29/2016
Book details: 320 pages.

Hacking Darwin

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"A gifted and thoughtful writer, Metzl brings us to the frontiers of biology and technology, and reveals a world full of promise and peril." — Siddhartha Mukherjee MD, New York Times bestselling author of The Emperor of All Maladies and The Gene Passionate, provocative, and highly illuminating, Hacking Darwin is the must read book about the future of our species for fans of Homo Deus and The Gene. After 3.8 billion years humankind is about to start evolving by new rules... From leading geopolitical expert and technology futurist Jamie Metzl comes a groundbreaking exploration of the many ways genetic-engineering is shaking the core foundations of our lives — sex, war, love, and death. At the dawn of the genetics revolution, our DNA is becoming as readable, writable, and hackable as our information technology. But as humanity starts retooling our own genetic code, the choices we make today will be the difference between realizing breathtaking advances in human well-being and descending into a dangerous and potentially deadly genetic arms race. Enter the laboratories where scientists are turning science fiction into reality. Look towards a future where our deepest beliefs, morals, religions, and politics are challenged like never before and the very essence of what it means to be human is at play. When we can engineer our future children, massively extend our lifespans, build life from scratch, and recreate the plant and animal world, should we?
Author: Jamie Metzl
Published by Sourcebooks, Inc. on 04/23/2019
Book details: 352 pages.

Spy Wars

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King Lear, one of Shakespeare's darkest and most savage plays, tells the story of the foolish and Job-like Lear, who divides his kingdom, as he does his affections, according to vanity and whim. Lear's failure as a father engulfs himself and his world in turmoil and tragedy. He changes from king to beggar, and finally, to man, in a pattern of loss and discovery which reflects the archetype of tragic wisdom.
Published by Yale University Press on 05/01/2007
Book details: 313 pages.

A Little War That Shook the World

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The brief war between Russia and Georgia in August 2008 seemed to many like an unexpected shot out of the blue that was gone as quickly as it came. Former Assistant Deputy Secretary of State Ronald Asmus contends that it was a conflict that was prepared and planned for some time by Moscow, part of a broader strategy to send a message to the United States: that Russia is going to flex its muscle in the twenty-first century. A Little War that Changed the World is a fascinating look at the breakdown of relations between Russia and the West, the decay and decline of the Western Alliance itself, and the fate of Eastern Europe in a time of economic crisis.
Author: Ronald Asmus
Published by St. Martin's Press on 01/19/2010
Book details: 272 pages.

So Many Heroes

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A vivid description of the Russian-led invasion of Czechoslovakia in 1968 by Alan Levy, an American journalist who lived there from 1967 to 1971.
Author: Alan Levy
Published by Open Road Media on 09/29/2015
Book details: 384 pages.

SUPERHUBS

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ONE OF BLOOMBERG'S BEST BOOKS, 2016 FOREWORD BY NOURIEL ROUBINI $UPERHUBS is a rare, behind-the-scenes look at how the world's most powerful titans, the -superhubs- pull the levers of our global financial system. Combining insider's knowledge with principles of network science, Sandra Navidi offers a startling new perspective on how superhubs build their powerful networks and how their decisions impact all our lives. $UPERHUBS reveals what happens at the exclusive, invitation-only platforms - The World Economic Forum in Davos, the meetings of the International Monetary Fund, think-tank gatherings and exclusive galas. This is the most vivid portrait to date of the global elite: the bank CEOs, fund managers, billionaire financiers and politicians who, through their interlocking relationships and collective influence are transforming our increasingly fragile financial system, economy and society.
Published by Nicholas Brealey on 01/24/2017
Book details: 228 pages.
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