The Pentagon's New Map: War and Peace in the Twenty-first Century
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On May 22 2010
Tom Copeland (USCG)
read this book
I really enjoyed the parts of this book where Barnett talks about the Pentagon's "briefing culture". A white paper won't do, since the O-8's aides can just summarize it for him - you have to have a lively, entertaining, and insightful brief to get access to the upper reaches of the Pentagon. This book was written in 2004, and Barnett made some bold predictions. He thought that Kim Jong-il would be toppled by President Bush, but here we are in 2010 and Kim Jong-il is sinking South Korean ships. Barnett also predicts that the U.S. will add some more states from bits of Mexico... that remains to be seen. The book's thesis is that there is a "functioning Core" and a "disconnected Gap", and we need to encourage more of the former and less of the latter. It's an interesting strategic proposal. One more thing I learned from this book - a great phrase from J.R.R. Tolkien: "Hope without guarantees". A wonderful thought!