The Devil and Uncle Sam: A User's Guide to the Friendly Tyrant's Dilemma

1st Edition

Adam Garfinkle

Published January 30, 1991
Reference - 176 Pages
ISBN 9781560000129 - CAT# Y354779


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For more than forty years, the American government has struggled with the challenge of maintaining useful relations with a special breed of regime: one whose rulers profess a community of interests with the United States while they rule through authoritarian means. Relationships with such "friendly tyrants" almost invariably generate tensions between the need for prudent security strategies and the ideal of promoting liberty and human rights worldwide. The Devil and Uncle Sam: A User's Guide to the Friendly Tyrants Dilemma distills the policy lessons of over four decades and offers practical approaches to negotiating these obstinate ambiguities of contemporary political life.This User's Guide brings together a team of eminent authors with diverse talents and experience to present a comparative study of the Friendly Tyrants phenomenon in recent history and to devise a systematic set of guidelines for dealing with it. The book is organized around ten essential maxims (Beware Dependence, Be Nimble, Promote Democracy, Chastise with Care, Define Goals, Know the Country, Think It Through, Coordinate Policy, Hedge Bets, Plan for Crises) and a larger number of specific Do's and Don'ts.The Devil and Uncle Sam draws richly upon historical examples to illustrate general principles that will prove invaluable to policymakers and political analysts. The Persian Gulf*War has shown that the Friendly Tyrants problem is still with us, even in the post-Cold War environment. The authors' understanding of past patterns yields insights that should help to prevent the preventable. While new situations will create possibilities for new mistakes, old ones must not be repeated. Contributors to The Devil and Uncle Sam include, in addition to Adam Garfinkle, Daniel Pipes, Kenneth Adelman, Patrick Clawson, Mark Falcoff, and Douglas J. Feith.

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