Our Man: Richard Holbrooke and the End of the American Century (Hardback)George Packer (author)
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This expansive biography of the great US diplomat Richard Holbrooke doubles as a coruscating history of American political machinations over the past half century. From Vietnam to Afghanistan Our Man documents the heroism and hubris of US foreign policy through the life of the arrogant, intransigent yet frequently brilliant Holbrooke, and details how he and his aggressive interventionism ultimately fell from favour in the ‘post-Iraq’ 21st century.
From one of America's greatest non-fiction writers, an epic saga of the rise and fall of American power, from Vietnam to Afghanistan, told through the life of one man.
Richard Holbrooke was one of the most legendary and complicated figures in recent American history. Brilliant, utterly self-absorbed, and possessed of almost inhuman energy and appetites, he was both admired and detested. From his days as a young adviser in Vietnam to his last efforts to end the war in Afghanistan, Holbrooke embodied the postwar American impulse to take the lead on the global stage.
He was the force behind the Dayton Accords that ended the Balkan wars, America's greatest diplomatic achievement in the post-Cold War era. His power lay in an utter belief in himself and his idea of a muscular, generous foreign policy. But his sharp elbows and tireless self-promotion ensured that he never rose to the highest levels in government that he so desperately coveted.
Holbrooke's story is the story of the rise and fall of America during its era of supremacy: its strength, drive, and sense of possibility, as well as its penchant for overreach and heedless self-confidence. Drawing on Holbrooke's diaries and papers, George Packer's narrative is both intimate and epic in its revelatory portrait of this extraordinary and deeply flawed man, and the elite spheres of society and government he inhabited.
Publisher: Vintage Publishing
Number of pages: 608
Weight: 1035 g
Dimensions: 240 x 162 x 40 mm
'Outstanding... Our Man is one of the most fascinating dissections of US power - its strengths and serious weaknesses - I've read.' - Steve Bloomfield - The Guardian
'In many ways a collective portrait of that genration who came of age during the Vietnam War. This terrifically talented and fantastically flawed cohort of men come to life in these pages.' - The Financial Times