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Timothy R. SmithAcacia masterfully explores Clifford's ability to persuade the powerful. The descriptions of White House tussles between advisers competing for the president's ear—especially the hawks on Vietnam, who we know were leading the president to disaster—are riveting. All too often, we focus on the officeholders, forgetting the managers backstage. Acacia's book shows just how much power advisers can wield.
—The Washington Post