Great Negotiations: Agreements that Changed the Modern World

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"In a time when negotiations, both great and small, continue to shape our world, this book provides an excellent opportunity to learn from the past and understand the present.”—Kofi Annan, Nobel Peace Prize Winner and former Secretary General of the United States

“A thought-provoking, informative book, highly recommended for all readers interested in international affairs.”—Library Journal

“For anyone with an interest in diplomacy and political history, Stanton's book is both entertaining and informative.” —Foreign Policy Watch

“Every professional concerned with dispute resolution and every student of negotiation has much to learn from Fredrik Stanton's lively stories of eight history-shaping negotiations.”
—Robert H. Mnookin, Chair Program on Negotiation, Harvard Law School

“An excellent introduction into some of the great triumphs and failures of modern diplomacy.”—Seattle Post-Intelligencer

“An interesting, informative study well worth reading and pondering.” —American Diplomacy

“Stanton deftly illustrates that the power of haggling can easily rival that of any army or warhead.”—Roll Call

“Exhaustive research and careful thought have enabled Stanton to employ an extraordinary writing talent to produce a contribution to history and a source of enjoyable reading.”—New York Law Journal

“Stanton brings back to life both famous and some long forgotten personalities in the history of major American, European, and Asian negotiations. He persuasively makes his case for the importance of negotiators and negotiations both when wars can be kept from beginning and when wars end. He weaves in deft descriptions of the personal strengths and foibles of negotiators and homes in on the ability of the best to improvise when maneuvering on unfamiliar terrain.” —Ambassador Richard W. Murphy, Council on Foreign Relations

Words as much as weapons have shaped the course of history. Whether to avert, resolve, assist, or secure the outcome of a conflict, diplomacy in the modern age has had great triumphs and bitter failures, from the Cuban Missile Crisis in 1962, which narrowly spared humanity from a nuclear Armageddon, to the Treaty of Versailles after World War I, which created problems that still confront us today. Drawing on primary sources, transcripts, and interviews, Great Negotiations: Agreements that Changed the Modern World tells the stories of eight key episodes in modern diplomacy. From Benjamin Franklin securing crucial French support for the American revolution to Reagan and Gorbachev laying the groundwork to eliminate an entire class of nuclear weapons, Fredrik Stanton explains what each party brought to the negotiating table, the stakes, the obstacles to success, and how they were overcome.

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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
Our most direct access to history is through the grand public gestures—the speeches, battles, and photo opportunities. But just as frequently, history is truly made in the backroom deals. Here Stanton, who has served as an elections monitor in the Balkans and several former Soviet republics, gives us a solid primer on some of the most important haggling sessions of the modern world. This lucid and evenhanded overview reveals much about the sometimes excruciating push and pull that shaped the international politics of today, from how Benjamin Franklin's clever subterfuge ensured an alliance with the French and victory in the Revolutionary War to how competing interests and a poor planning sunk Woodrow Wilson's dream for the League of Nations and how, in the most nail-biting chapter, Kennedy and Khrushchev raced to find a mutually acceptable resolution to the Cuban Missile Crisis and stave off what could have become a global nuclear holocaust. VERDICT A thought-provoking, informative book, highly recommended for all readers interested in international affairs.—Ned Resnikoff, Library Journal
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781594161391
  • Publisher: Westholme Publishing
  • Publication date: 4/15/2011
  • Edition description: 2
  • Pages: 304
  • Sales rank: 966,329
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 9.20 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Meet the Author

Fredrik Stanton is a John C. Whitehead Fellow of the Foreign Policy Association. He has appeared on C-Span's Washington Journal and Voice of America, and his writings have been published in Washington,, Politico, the Boston Herald and the United Nations Associations’ A Global Agenda.

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Table of Contents

Franklin at the French Court, 1778
The Louisiana Purchase, 1803
The Congress of Vienna, 1815
The Portsmouth Treaty, 1905
The Paris Peace Conference, 1919
The Arab-Israeli Accord, 1949
The Cuban Missile Crisis, 1962
The Reykjavik Summit, 1986

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