1st Edition

Predicting the Unthinkable, Anticipating the Impossible From the Fall of the Berlin Wall to America in the New Century

By Georgie Anne Geyer Copyright 2011
    370 Pages
    by Routledge

    370 Pages
    by Routledge

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    In the 1980s, most Americans scoffed at the idea that the Communist empire could collapse; Georgie Anne Geyer was already outlining that probability. In the 1990s, the world was stunned by wars that raged across post-Yugoslavia; Geyer interviewed top officials and anticipated the conflicts. When 9/11 occurred, she stated, "This was inevitable—the terrorists had already attacked the World Trade Center in 1993 and criminals always return to the scene of the crime."

    Geyer argues that while the United States was praised everywhere during an era of "indispensable power" as the "greatest power the world has known," it actually had started on the road to decline. It had won the Cold War, but had immediately embarked upon more Vietnam-like small wars of tremendous cost in Iraq and Afghanistan. Across the board, it was no longer paying its way, while its domestic culture was being vulgarized at every turn.

    This book explains how, when, and where these declines happened. Geyer studies the history of nations and of peoples; observes human nature, particularly as influenced by religion and ideology; and is a close analyst of the acts of men and women when they perceive they have been humiliated by others or by history. She warns Americans and journalists that we must anticipate the changes in the world before they are upon us and that we must employ predictions to strengthen our nation and its principles.

    Preface to the Paperback Edition by Georgie Anne Geyer
    Preface by Irving Louis Horowitz

    Part I: The Expectant Decade
    East Germany's Not at All like Its Image, Ron
    Berlin Wall is Just One Example of How the World is Split in Two
    Soviet Empire Begins to Crack
    Groping toward Pluralism
    Iranian Children Herded to Death
    We Still Can't Go Home Again
    Reagan Reforms: His View of Soviets

    Part II: The Conceit of Innocence
    Poland's Winning Ways with Freedom
    Policymakers Ignore New Trends in Terrorism
    Yugoslavia: Pulled Back to the Past and Ahead to the Future
    Sick with History, Kosovo Awaits Serbs' Final Blow
    The Conceit of Innocence II
    Who Killed Sir Michael Rose?
    U.N. and West Should Quit Playing "Dead Dog" in Bosnia
    UN Secretary-General Believes in Negotiating
    The United Nations and Neutralism
    Russians Slowly Learning New Way
    Unclear Indicator of the New Russia
    After 1,000 Years of Absolute Faiths, Russia Has None
    Russia Needed a New Identity, Not "Shock Therapy"
    Kazakh Leader Grapples with Change
    In Ironic Reversal, Little Finland Now Influencing Giant Neighbor Russia
    Little Norway Goes Where Superpowers Cannot Trend
    Holland's "Managed Morality"
    The Cold War is Over but the Quest for Meaning Continues
    Should U.S. Troops Have Gone on to Baghdad?
    Seeking to Change Society by Force?
    End of Cold War Released Violent, Separatist Feelings
    Many Groups Are Aiding the Breakdown of Nation-States
    Sadat's Vision Made a Big Difference
    Lessons from the Death of a Cowboy
    Post-Cold War World Requires Institution-Building
    Foreign Policy Differences of Utopians and Realists
    Comandante Chavez Wants to Save Venezuela from "Abyss"
    Marine Corps Experience is Applicable Elsewhere
    What the Listeners Might Hear in Havana
    Democracy is Process, Not Instant Coffee
    Shanghai: Full of Life, But Going Where?
    Traditional Idea of Truth vs. Designer Truths
    Our Foreign Policy toward China is Delusional

    Part III: Terrorism an Era unto Itself
    Gov. George W. Bush is a Reasonable Reformer
    Bush's Faith-Based Program is Far Superior to Welfare State
    Putin Arrives
    Gulf War Did Not Change Saddam Hussein's Priorities
    Religious-Secular Tensions Divide Israel
    Clinton Foreign Policy is Devoid of Principle
    U.S. Must Preserve What is Left of Our Civic Ideals
    Internet Globalizers Can't Erase Cultural Differences
    In India the South Points the Way for the North
    Information without Context or Knowledge is Meaningless
    Afghani Radicals Foment Terror in Far-Flung Places
    America is Losing Its Sense of Self
    Haiti: Political Terrorism Hangs over Elections

    Part IV: Between Neutralism and Justice
    "Cultural Intelligence" was Sacrificed on the Economic Altar
    Long-Term U.S. Goal: Collapse of Terrorist Network
    Winds of Change Keep Blowing over Bush White House
    Rootless Young Men May Become Civilization's Nemesis
    Palestinians Despair as Hope for Peace and Land Disappear
    Afghan Leader Abdul Haq was Rare Voice of Reason in Mayhem
    Renewed Influence of Nation-States Marks Geopolitical Analysis
    Journalism for the Sheer Joy of It
    Pearl's Death Marks Cold New Reality for Foreign Correspondents
    Hawks' Eyes Look Longingly at War against Hussein
    With Queen Mother's Passing, Mothering Loses Great Exemplar
    U.S. No Longer Plays by the Rules It Helped to Invent
    Bush Sr. Sends Not-So-Subtle Message with Award to Kennedy
    Weapons of Mass Deception were Saddam's Greatest Defense
    Kuwait's Historical Example Holds Lessons about Iraq
    New Chapters Open in the Mystery behind the War
    Earlier Examination Identified Disintegrating Nation-States
    Remembering Yitzhak Rabin: A Legacy of Peace Derailed
    "Mr. Rockefeller's Roads" Reveal Nature, Not Despoil It
    America's Abbreviated Experiment with Empire-Building
    "I Thought We Were Different"
    Oman's Development an Instructive Model for Middle East
    Military Explores Traditional Power Centers in Chaotic Iraq
    European Union Continues toward Role as World Player
    Unity, Authority Were Missing Links in New Orleans Disaster
    The Dark Heart of Dick Cheney
    Peace is Not Fostered by Lip Service but by Patient Labor
    Referendum in Uganda Offers Lesson for Emerging Democracies
    China's Star is Rising as a World Superpower
    Cohesive Future Depends on Comprehensive Newspaper Reporting
    Deconstructing Don Rumsfeld
    Baker on Cleanup Crew after "Sonny's" Big Adventure
    Without Newspapers, Americans Can't Understand the World
    Egyptian Cat Scholarship was Purely a Labor of Love
    In Wake of Iraq Miscalculations, Talk Turns to Iran
    Private Security Contractors Create Very Public Problems
    Boris Yeltsin Leaves Legacy of Contradiction
    Son Solves Mystery of Father's Death in Soviet Gulag
    Political, Not Religious, Issues are Motivating Terrorists
    War Costs Endanger Our Future Security
    Questions Remain in the Fall of Emperor Spitzer
    Zbigniew Brzezinski: Master of Foreign Policy
    Questions of War
    Market "Magic" Relied on Greed
    U.S. Can't Afford More Mistakes
    America Has Lost Sight of Its Original Work Ethic

    Part V: The Present as Future
    The Original Community Organizer Counterinsurgency Doesn't Come
    Naturally to U.S. Forces
    Crisis Mode Dominates International Conference
    One Woman's Journey through the Health Care Jungle
    Obama Strategy to End War by Making War
    Next Stop: Yemen
    Is There a New Revolution Under Way in Iran?
    Afghan Morass
    Twentieth Anniversary of the Berlin Wall
    The Fault is in Ourselves
    Iraq War Still a Mistake
    Price of Peace in Europe
    Google in China
    How did We Ever Get to be So Incivil and Vulgar? Without Even Trying?
    Radical Young Terrorists aren't So Mysterious After All

    Part VI: Out of Time but in Space
    Chicago: Life is a Matter of "Becoming"
    Vietnam. Then Haiti Today
    Pacifist Policies, Appeasing Terrorism
    "Axis of Annoyance" Prevails in Latin America
    War on the Southern Border
    Spreading the Developmental "Gospel"
    African Illusions and Realities
    Germany's Isolation Collapsed with The Wall
    A Trip to Polish Roots
    Mothers: The Swing Generation for Women's Rights
    New South Africa Shines at the World Cup
    America's Little Wars are Draining Us in a Big Way
    Summer Home: The Past is No More
    Lessons from the Chicago South Side
    A Graduate Comes Full Circle