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Leadership: Six Studies in World Strategy

Leadership: Six Studies in World Strategy PDF

Author: Henry Kissinger

Publisher: Penguin Press


Publish Date: July 5, 2022

ISBN-10: 0593489446

Pages: 528

File Type: Epub

Language: English

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Book Preface

This book is what it is largely because of Stuart Proffitt, publishing director at Penguin Press UK and editor extraordinaire. Thoughtful publishers raise issues that are elusive and thereby inspire their authors to their best reflections. Stuart has performed this task with aplomb, persistence and wisdom. Few have understood – or challenged – my thinking with comparable subtlety and range of knowledge. Throughout dozens of Zoom calls over more than two years, Stuart has been an indispensable partner in the conception and execution of this book.

Another remarkable collaborator complemented Stuart’s impact with exceptional editorial skill. Neal Kozodoy reviewed every chapter. A genius in slicing Gordian knots of clotted prose and a profound amateur historian, he broadened the perspective and elevated the prose.

As with previous books, I have benefited from dedicated associates who explored the vast source materials. Matthew Taylor King gave sage counsel on both substance and style. Leaving an imprint on every chapter, he helped shepherd the book from its midway point with extraordinary commitment and perception.

Eleanor Runde, who combines enthusiasm, efficiency, and remarkable intellect, undertook valuable research in the first phase of the book and later returned on a part-time basis to make a penetrating contribution to the Sadat chapter. Vance Serchuk was helpful and incisive in the development and analysis of the Nixon chapter. Ida Rothschild provided effective line edits and thoughtful organizational comments.

Meredith Potter, Ben Daus, and Aaron MacLean submitted research on statecraft at an early stage. Joseph Kiernan and John Nelson at the beginning undertook useful background research. Austin Coffey was valuable in collating the key chapters for publication.

The principal chapters were submitted for review to distinguished authors on the subject whose work I admire. Daniel Collings, who also undertook research on Margaret Thatcher, reviewed the completed Thatcher text together with Charles Powell (Lord Powell of Bayswater) and Charles Moore. Professor Julian Jackson perceptively read the de Gaulle chapter, and Professor Christopher Clark the Adenauer chapter. Martin Indyk, diplomat and scholar, offered discerning comments for the Sadat chapter. I am indebted to each of them for their help.

The veteran diplomat Charles Hill, collaborator and friend for half a century, contributed trenchant memos and an especially useful treatment of Richard Nixon. Over his remarkable career, Charlie made a seminal contribution by service to the State Department and to Yale University and to the elevation of our society.

A number of friends permitted me to impose on their goodwill for incisive judgment on specific issues. They included Ray Dalio, Samantha Power, Joel Klein, Roger Hertog, Eli Jacobs, and Bob Blackwill.

In recent years, Eric Schmidt has broadened my vistas by introducing me to the world of high-tech and artificial intelligence. Together with Dan Huttenlocher, we collaborated on The Age of AI, which influenced the strategic discussions in these pages.

In the preparation of this volume – our seventh such collaboration – Theresa Cimino Amantea once again demonstrated her indispensability. As the book took shape, Theresa not only deciphered my handwriting and retyped chapters over many rounds of revisions with her trademark diligence and eagle-eyed acuity. She also liaised with Penguin Press, the Wylie Agency, and my outside readers and editors.

Assisting with the typing during a critical period was the tireless Jody Iobst Williams, another trusted associate of many decades. Jessee LePorin and Courtney Glick capably managed my schedule throughout the process. Chris Nelson, Dennis O’Shea, and Maarten Oosterbaan of my personal staff provided invaluable assistance during long stretches of pandemic-imposed seclusion and on many administrative matters.

Ann Godoff, president and editor of Penguin Press, reprised her traditional role managing important matters for the American release with characteristic professionalism. On the UK side, Richard Duguid, Alice Skinner, and David Watson all performed ably under time pressure, particularly in copy-editing and collating the manuscript.

Andrew Wylie, my literary agent over many years, and his UK deputy James Pullen represented me around the world with indefatigable commitment and ability.

This book is dedicated to Nancy, my wife of just under a half-century. She has fulfilled my life and given it meaning. As with my other books, Nancy read and uplifted every chapter.

Needless to say, the shortcomings in this book are my own.




The Axes of Leadership • The Nature of Leadership Decisions • Six Leaders in their Context • Epitomes of Leadership: The Statesman and the Prophet • The Individual in History

1 Konrad Adenauer: The Strategy of Humility

The Necessity of Renewal • From Early Life to Internal Exile • The Road to Leadership • The Restoration of Civil Order and the Inauguration of the Chancellor • The Path to a New National Identity • The Soviet Challenge and Rearmament • The Inextricable Past: Reparations to the Jewish People • Two Crises: Suez and Berlin • Three Conversations with Adenauer • German Unification: The Tormenting Wait • Final Conversations • The Adenauer Tradition

2 Charles de Gaulle: The Strategy of Will

Close Encounters • The Beginning of the Journey • The Sources and Aims of de Gaulle’s Conduct • De Gaulle in the History of France • De Gaulle and the Second World War • North African Contest • Achieving Political Power • A Visit to Moscow • De Gaulle and the Provisional Government • The Desert • Failure in Indochina and Frustration in the Middle East • Algeria and the Return of de Gaulle • The Fifth Republic • The End of the Algerian Conflict • Germany as a Key to French Policy: De Gaulle and Adenauer • De Gaulle and the Atlantic Alliance • The Nuclear Directorate • Flexible Response and Nuclear Strategy • What Is an Alliance? • The End of the Presidency • The Nature of de Gaulle’s Statesmanship • De Gaulle and Churchill Compared • Behind the Mystery

3 Richard Nixon: The Strategy of Equilibrium

The World to Which Nixon Came • An Unforeseen Invitation • National Security Decision-making in the Nixon White House • Nixon’s Worldview • Diplomacy and Linkage • A Trip to Europe • The Vietnam War and its Conclusion • Great Power Diplomacy and Arms Control • Emigration from the Soviet Union • The Opening to China • The Middle East in Turmoil • The 1973 Middle East War • The Diplomacy of Ceasefire • The Middle East Peace Process • Bangladesh and the Interlocking Cold War • Nixon and the American Crisis

4 Anwar Sadat: The Strategy of Transcendence

The Special Quality of Anwar Sadat • The Impact of History • Early Life • Contemplations in Prison • Egypt’s Independence • Mouthpiece of the Revolution • Nasser and Sadat • Sadat’s Perspective • The Corrective Revolution • Strategic Patience • The 1973 War • Meir and Sadat • The Meeting at the Tahra Palace • From Geneva to Disengagement • The Syrian Dimension • Another Step Toward Peace: The Sinai II Agreement • Sadat’s Journey to Jerusalem • The Tortuous Road to Peace • The Unraveling • Assassination • Epilogue: The Unrealized Legacy

5 Lee Kuan Yew: The Strategy of Excellence

A Visit to Harvard • The Giant from Lilliput • Imperial Youth • Building a State • Building a Nation • ‘Let History Judge’ • Building an Economy • Lee and America • Lee and China • Between the US and China • Lee’s Legacy • Lee the Person

6 Margaret Thatcher: The Strategy of Conviction

A Most Unlikely Leader • Thatcher and the British System • The Challenges Ahead: Britain in the 1970s • The Ascent from Grantham • A Framework for Leadership • The Economic Reformer • In Defense of Sovereignty: The Falklands Conflict • Negotiations over Hong Kong • Confronting a Legacy of Violence: Northern Ireland • Fundamental Truths: The ‘Special Relationship’ and the Cold War • A Problem in Grenada • A Strategic Shift: East–West Engagement • Defending Kuwaiti Sovereignty: The Gulf Crisis • The Limits to Leadership: Germany and the Future of Europe • Europe, the Endless Difficulty • The Fall • Epilogue

Conclusion: The Evolution of Leadership

From Aristocracy to Meritocracy • Hard Truths • The Faltering Meritocracy • Deep Literacy and Visual Culture • Underlying Values • Leadership and World Order • The Future of Leadership

List of Illustrations



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