America's Other Army: The U.S. Foreign Service and 21st Century Diplomacy Paperback – Sep 10 2012
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About the Author
Nicholas Kralev is an author, journalist and speaker on diplomacy, international affairs and global travel. A former Financial Times and Washington Times correspondent, he has traveled around the world with four U.S. secretaries of state -- Hillary Clinton, Condoleezza Rice, Colin Powell and Madeleine Albright. He has visited more than 80 countries and flown over 2 million miles. He is also the author of "Decoding Air Travel: A Guide to Saving on Airfare and Flying in Luxury," and founder and CEO of Kralev International LLC, a consulting and training company. He has a master's degree in public policy from Harvard's John F. Kennedy School of Government and speaks five languages.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Kralev's timely account of how the State Department represents America's interests around the world illuminates a vital component our security apparatus that remains too often in the shadows.
The author, a former diplomatic correspondent for two major newspapers, brings the Foreign Service to life with numerous profiles and anecdotes from diplomats he has encountered over the years. In addition, interviews with the current secretary of State and her recent predecessors provide invaluable insight into how America's diplomatic mission has evolved in recent years. The author's first-hand accounts of visits to American embassies around the world give the reader a taste of a life that is at times exotic, even glamorous, but often gritty and dangerous as well.
What comes through most strongly in this chronicle of several active and retired diplomats, however, is the sense of duty and mission that motivates their service. Kralev doesn't gloss over the shortcomings or problems in the State Department, but he lets the words and deeds of these public servants speak for themselves and the reader can't help but be impressed by their talent and dedication.
Given recent events in North Africa, "America's Other Army" is an important read in order to gain a more complete understanding of the nuts and bolts of US diplomatic work abroad and not just the big picture policy objectives laid out from Washington. Furthermore, Kralev strives at all times to emphasize the people that make up the Foreign Service and the extraordinary talents they must possess in order to successfully fulfill the tasks asked of them in their work.
In all, "America's Other Army" provides an excellent overview of the work of the Foreign Service, which is a subject that is not explored enough as it should given the current importance of diplomacy for American interests.