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Stephen Kinzer has a talent for pitching serious history at a level which is comprehensible to the layman. Hopefully we will see more of his books on Audible. This book recounts the politics and social attitudes of America's takeover of the vestiges of the Spanish empire. Its a rivetting and somewhat tragic story, laying the foundations of America's quasi imperial role in the 20th century. It might sound a bit dry but with players like Roosevelt, Karl Schurz, Andrew Carnegie and Mark Twain involved there is never a dull moment. Excellent reading by Robert Petkoff.
I'm currently active duty Army with 17 years in service. In my opinion, this book should be read by every soldier and, most importantly, by our politicians who decide whether to send us into harms way. As the author demonstrates so eloquently in this book, intervention abroad (whether by democrats or republicans) rarely leads to the intended goals due to ignorance, hubris, and unintended consequences. The Spanish-American War is a little understood and rarely discussed period of American military history. But that really should change given that the vigorous debate surrounding it are just as relevant today as they were over 100 years ago.
20 of 20 people found this review helpful
This well told history of the Spanish American War serves up many insights into the roots, motivations, and perils of American intervetion abroad right up to our present quagmires in Iraq and Afganistan. The heated political debates among giant personalities are as relevant today as they were in the 1890s. These are lessons we have not yet learned as a nation. Our failure heed them will create an increasingly unstable and dangerous world. Excellent and important book. Highly recommended.
9 of 9 people found this review helpful