Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your email address or mobile phone number.
Warrior Politics: Why Leadership Demands a Pagan Ethos Paperback – January 7, 2003
Frequently Bought Together
Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought
From Publishers Weekly
Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
More About the Author
Top Customer Reviews
In Warrior Politics, Kaplan explores the wisdom of the ages for answers for today's leaders. While the modern world may seem more complex and dangerous than ever before, Kaplan writes from a deeper historical perspective to reveal how little things actually change. Indeed, as Kaplan shows us, we can look to history's most influential thinkers, who would have understood and known how to navigate today's dangerous political waters.
Drawing on the work of Sun Tzu, Thucydides, Machiavelli, Hobbes, among others, Kaplan argues that in a world of unstable states and an uncertain future, it is increasingly imperative to wrest from the past what we need to arm ourselves for the road ahead
Kaplan says about Western foreign policy pretty much what one wag once said of Queen Victoria: we have pursued goodness to the point of self-indulgence. The result has too often been bloody chaos. Take East Timor, for example. Before the UN insisted on conducting an independence referendum in the region, two things were clear. First, the people would vote for independence from Indonesia. Second, Indonesian partisans would exact revenge violently, unless a foreign security force was placed on the ground to keep the peace. The UN, or rather its members, would not provide such a force, but the do-gooders of the world nonetheless insisted on the international norm of self-determination. The result was disaster.
Particularly since the end of the Cold War, the West in general and the U.S. in particular have been guilty of many such exercises of catastrophic good intentions.Read more ›
Warrior Politics draws on the point of view that "ancient history . . . is the surest guide . . . in the early decades of the twenty-first century." Mr. Kaplan argues for following the "ancient tradition of skepticism and contentious realism."
Some of the lessons Mr. Kaplan cites are that even "moral" states vary in morality. The Athenians treated the Melians horribly, simply because they could.
Many of Mr. Kaplan's points will outrage at least some readers. For example, he goes to some lengths to argue that Tiberius (usually thought of as a cruel tyrant who did little good) strengthened the Roman state in such a way that it survived longer than it otherwise would have against the "barbarians." He also speaks positively about being very tough on disorder in poor countries which have little effective government. Mr. Kaplan also argues that Judeo-Christian beliefs in proper behavior are "personal virtues" that should not have a primary role in creating foreign policy. If the U.S. has power it can project and those beliefs can be effectively acted on, Mr. Kaplan then feels that the U.S. should move when it is in its self interest.
One of the most interesting questions in the book is what differentiated Neville Chamberlain from Winston Churchill in addressing Hitler. Mr.Read more ›
This work extends some of his thoughts first outlined in Atlantic Monthly and in "The Coming Anarchy", the work (essay and later book) he is perhaps best known for, after "Balkan Ghosts". The difference is that Kaplan is now providing himself with intellectual forebears or allies (Livy, Machiavelli, Thucydides, Sun Tzu, to name the most prominent, though Kaplan is still somewhat journalistic in comparison to these luminaries). This helps to place his own ruminations in a kind of trajectory that might best be called thoughtful pessimism. Kaplan is often described, even by himself, as a kind of realist, but I don't think this ill-defined term is useful here. (Almost everyone sensible wants to be realistic, or to be a realist about certain matters. The same, of course, goes for pragmatism.) There are many realisms and besides it isn't clear that Kaplan is concerned about defining this notion, which would take him far away from his chosen task in this book.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Historical events and international relations theories have been dominated by the realist camp. Classical realism, neo-realism, neo-conservative realism are all progressions from... Read morePublished 2 months ago by C P Slayton
Undoubtedly one of the most insightful writers of political travelogues. There is not one of his books that does not expound on a depth of exploration and understanding.Published 3 months ago by Joan M Tarabusi
Today's international morass reviewed in historic terms over the extent of written history of mankind. Excellent, but only for the serious reader. Read morePublished 6 months ago by J. S. Aldridge
An extraordinary collection of the history of rulers and leaders from ancient times and how their choices are echoed in the statesmen and leaders of our current world. Read morePublished 13 months ago by Stacy Cremeans
Kaplan's short text speaks to a world unfamiliar to many Westerners, ambiguity. This text tries to introduce, in a manner suitable to even the mundane intellectual, a framework for... Read morePublished 13 months ago by Goblin
Brilliant! While I do not agree or prescribe to every single philosophical point highlighted, the writing is top notch, accessible, and inspiring. Read morePublished 13 months ago by Bobo
I have read two books by Robert Kaplan for a class I was taking. Subjects were great...writing style leaves a lot to be desired.Published 14 months ago by Diannemc
The primary reason for my decision to attain a B.A. in History was to gain insight into the state of political affair during the 1970s. Read morePublished 15 months ago by John