Memo to the President Elect: How We Can Restore America’s Reputation and Leadership

Madeleine K. Albright, Author, Bill Woodward, With . HarperCollins $26.95 (328p) ISBN 978-0-06-135180-8

Bill Clinton’s secretary of state dispenses advice both geostrategic (“The first rule for intervening in a civil war is don’t”) and mundane (“Leave time for exercise”) in this engaging foreign policy primer for the next White House occupant. Much of her wry wisdom concerns the muddled nuts-and-bolts of policy making, covering such topics as the indecipherability of satellite photos, the near-impossibility of getting the Washington bureaucracy to follow through on presidential initiatives and the importance of sounding out dissenters. The book provides briefings on world regions and hot spots that will likely preoccupy the next administration, with recommendations that are sometimes specific—lift the embargo on Cuba, Albright suggests—but usually noncommittal. (“There are no good options in Iraq,” the author opines, though she foresees a split into three autonomous regions as the most stable way to proceed.) Between the lines, she articulates a Clintonian approach to the world—moderate and solicitous of allies and world opinion, wary of force but willing to use it. She’s anything but diplomatic on the subject of President Bush’s foreign policy, especially the invasion of Iraq. Savvy and tart, Albright’s is an unusually interesting presentation of centrist thought. (Jan.)

Reviewed on: 11/26/2007
Release date: 01/01/2008
Peanut Press/Palm Reader - 352 pages - 978-0-06-156908-1
Open Ebook - 352 pages - 978-0-06-156905-0
Paperback - 413 pages - 978-0-06-146899-5
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