In the Shadow of the Oval Office

Author: Ivo H. Daalder
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
ISBN: 1439156522
Format: PDF, ePub
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The most solemn obligation of any president is to safeguard the nation's security. But the president cannot do this alone. He needs help. In the past half century, presidents have relied on their national security advisers to provide that help. Who are these people, the powerful officials who operate in the shadow of the Oval Office, often out of public view and accountable only to the presidents who put them there? Some remain obscure even to this day. But quite a number have names that resonate far beyond the foreign policy elite: McGeorge Bundy, Henry Kissinger, Zbigniew Brzezinski, Colin Powell, Condoleezza Rice. Ivo Daalder and Mac Destler provide the first inside look at how presidents from John F. Kennedy to George W. Bush have used their national security advisers to manage America's engagements with the outside world. They paint vivid portraits of the fourteen men and one woman who have occupied the coveted office in the West Wing, detailing their very different personalities, their relations with their presidents, and their policy successes and failures. It all started with Kennedy and Bundy, the brilliant young Harvard dean who became the nation's first modern national security adviser. While Bundy served Kennedy well, he had difficulty with his successor. Lyndon Johnson needed reassurance more than advice, and Bundy wasn't always willing to give him that. Thus the basic lesson -- the president sets the tone and his aides must respond to that reality. The man who learned the lesson best was someone who operated mainly in the shadows. Brent Scowcroft was the only adviser to serve two presidents, Gerald Ford and George H. W. Bush. Learning from others' failures, he found the winning formula: gain the trust of colleagues, build a collaborative policy process, and stay close to the president. This formula became the gold standard -- all four national security advisers who came after him aspired to be "like Brent." The next president and national security adviser can learn not only from success, but also from failure. Rice stayed close to George W. Bush -- closer perhaps than any adviser before or since. But her closeness did not translate into running an effective policy process, as the disastrous decision to invade Iraq without a plan underscored. It would take years, and another national security aide, to persuade Bush that his Iraq policy was failing and to engineer a policy review that produced the "surge." The national security adviser has one tough job. There are ways to do it well and ways to do it badly. Daalder and Destler provide plenty of examples of both. This book is a fascinating look at the personalities and processes that shape policy and an indispensable guide to those who want to understand how to operate successfully in the shadow of the Oval Office.

The Heart of Power

Author: David Blumenthal
Publisher: Univ of California Press
ISBN: 0520268091
Format: PDF
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Explores how modern presidents have wrestled with their own mortality--and how they have taken this most human experience to heart as they faced the difficult politics of health care.

In the Shadow of FDR

Author: William E. Leuchtenburg
Publisher: Cornell University Press
ISBN: 0801462576
Format: PDF, Kindle
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A ghost has inhabited the Oval Office since 1945—the ghost of Franklin Delano Roosevelt. FDR's formidable presence has cast a large shadow on the occupants of that office in the years since his death, and an appreciation of his continuing influence remains essential to understanding the contemporary presidency. This new edition of In the Shadow of FDR has been updated to examine the presidency of George W. Bush and the first 100 days of the presidency of Barack Obama. The Obama presidency is evidence not just of the continuing relevance of FDR for assessing executive power but also of the salience of FDR's name in party politics and policy formulation.

The National Security Enterprise

Author: Roger Z. George
Publisher: Georgetown University Press
ISBN: 1589017501
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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Recent breakdowns in American national security have exposed the weaknesses of the nation’s vast overlapping security and foreign policy bureaucracy and the often dysfunctional interagency process. In the literature of national security studies, however, surprisingly little attention is given to the specific dynamics or underlying organizational cultures that often drive the bureaucratic politics of U.S. security policy. The National Security Enterprise offers a broad overview and analysis of the many government agencies involved in national security issues, the interagency process, Congressional checks and balances, and the influence of private sector organizations. The chapters cover the National Security Council, the Departments of Defense and State, the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, the Central Intelligence Agency, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Department of Homeland Security, and the Office of Management and Budget. The book also focuses on the roles of Congress, the Supreme Court, and outside players in the national security process like the media, think tanks, and lobbyists. Each chapter details the organizational culture and personality of these institutions so that readers can better understand the mindsets that drive these organizations and their roles in the policy process. Many of the contributors to this volume are long-time practitioners who have spent most of their careers working for these organizations. As such, they offer unique insights into how diplomats, military officers, civilian analysts, spies, and law enforcement officials are distinct breeds of policymakers and political actors. To illustrate how different agencies can behave in the face of a common challenge, contributors reflect in detail on their respective agency’s behavior during the Iraq War. This impressive volume is suitable for academic studies at both the undergraduate and graduate level; ideal for U.S. government, military, and national security training programs; and useful for practitioners and specialists in national security studies.

In the Shadow of FDR

Author: William E. Leuchtenburg
Publisher: Cornell University Press
ISBN: 0801462576
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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A ghost has inhabited the Oval Office since 1945—the ghost of Franklin Delano Roosevelt. FDR's formidable presence has cast a large shadow on the occupants of that office in the years since his death, and an appreciation of his continuing influence remains essential to understanding the contemporary presidency. This new edition of In the Shadow of FDR has been updated to examine the presidency of George W. Bush and the first 100 days of the presidency of Barack Obama. The Obama presidency is evidence not just of the continuing relevance of FDR for assessing executive power but also of the salience of FDR's name in party politics and policy formulation.

Running the World

Author: David Rothkopf
Publisher: PublicAffairs
ISBN: 9780786736003
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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Never before in the history of mankind have so few people had so much power over so many. The people at the top of the American national security establishment, the President and his principal advisors, the core team at the helm of the National Security Council, are without question the most powerful committee in the history of the world.Yet, in many respects, they are among the least understood. A former senior official in the Clinton Administration himself, David Rothkopf served with and knows personally many of the NSC's key players of the past twenty-five years. In Running the World he pulls back the curtain on this shadowy world to explore its inner workings, its people, their relationships, their contributions and the occasions when they have gone wrong. He traces the group's evolution from the final days of the Second World War to the post-Cold War realities of global terror—exploring its triumphs, its human dramas and most recently, what many consider to be its breakdown at a time when we needed it most. Drawing on an extraordinary series of insider interviews with policy makers including Condoleezza Rice, Colin Powell, Henry Kissinger, senior officials of the Bush Administration, and over 130 others, the book offers unprecedented insights into what must change if America is to maintain its unprecedented worldwide leadership in the decades ahead.

Fire and Fury

Author: Michael Wolff
Publisher: Henry Holt and Company
ISBN: 1250158079
Format: PDF, Docs
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#1 New York Times Bestseller With extraordinary access to the West Wing, Michael Wolff reveals what happened behind-the-scenes in the first nine months of the most controversial presidency of our time in Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House. Since Donald Trump was sworn in as the 45th President of the United States, the country—and the world—has witnessed a stormy, outrageous, and absolutely mesmerizing presidential term that reflects the volatility and fierceness of the man elected Commander-in-Chief. This riveting and explosive account of Trump’s administration provides a wealth of new details about the chaos in the Oval Office, including: -- What President Trump’s staff really thinks of him -- What inspired Trump to claim he was wire-tapped by President Obama -- Why FBI director James Comey was really fired -- Why chief strategist Steve Bannon and Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner couldn’t be in the same room -- Who is really directing the Trump administration’s strategy in the wake of Bannon’s firing -- What the secret to communicating with Trump is -- What the Trump administration has in common with the movie The Producers Never before in history has a presidency so divided the American people. Brilliantly reported and astoundingly fresh, Fire and Fury shows us how and why Donald Trump has become the king of discord and disunion. “Essential reading.”—Michael D’Antonio, author of Never Enough: Donald Trump and the Pursuit of Success, CNN.com “Not since Harry Potter has a new book caught fire in this way...[Fire and Fury] is indeed a significant achievement, which deserves much of the attention it has received.”—The Economist

The Presidents Club

Author: Nancy Gibbs
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
ISBN: 1439148716
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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The Presidents Club, established at Dwight Eisenhower’s inauguration by Harry Truman and Herbert Hoover, is a complicated place: its members are bound forever by the experience of the Oval Office and yet are eternal rivals for history’s favor. Among their secrets: How Jack Kennedy tried to blame Ike for the Bay of Pigs. How Ike quietly helped Reagan win his first race in 1966. How Richard Nixon conspired with Lyndon Johnson to get elected and then betrayed him. How Jerry Ford and Jimmy Carter turned a deep enmity into an alliance. The unspoken pact between a father and son named Bush. And the roots of the rivalry between Clinton and Barack Obama. Time magazine editors and presidential historians Nancy Gibbs and Michael Duffy offer a new and revealing lens on the American presidency, exploring the club as a hidden instrument of power that has changed the course of history.

The President s Photographer

Author: John B. Bredar
Publisher: National Geographic Books
ISBN: 1426206763
Format: PDF, Docs
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A companion to November 2010 National Geographic TV special explores the work of the nine official White House photographers, from JFK through today, in a book that includes 150 historic photos.

The Last of the President s Men

Author: Bob Woodward
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
ISBN: 1501116452
Format: PDF, Mobi
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Bob Woodward exposes one of the final pieces of the Richard Nixon puzzle in this “intimate but disturbing portrayal of Nixon in the Oval Office” (The Washington Post). “Four decades after Watergate shook America, journalist Bob Woodward returns to the scandal to profile Alexander Butterfield, the Richard Nixon aide who revealed the existence of the Oval Office tapes and effectively toppled the presidency…Woodward re-creates detailed scenes, which reveal the petty power plays of America’s most powerful men…a close-up view of the Oval Office in its darkest hour” (Kirkus Reviews). In The Last of the President’s Men, Woodward reveals the untold story based on forty-six hours of interviews with Butterfield, supported by thousands of documents—many of them original and not in the presidential archives and libraries—and uncovered new dimensions of Nixon’s secrets, obsessions, and deceptions. “This volume…amplifies (rather than revises) the familiar, almost Miltonian portrait of the thirty-seventh president…as a brooding, duplicitous despot, obsessed with enemies and score-settling and not the least bit hesitant about lying to the public and breaking the law” (The New York Times). Today, The Last of the President’s Men could not be more timely and relevant as voters question how much do we know about those who are now seeking the presidency in 2016—what really drives them, how do they really make decisions, who do they surround themselves with, and what are their true political and personal values? This is “yet another fascinating gift to history by DC’s most relentless reporter” (Politico).