From Exile to Washington: A Memoir of Leadership in the Twentieth Century

From Exile to Washington: A Memoir of Leadership in the Twentieth Century

by Michael Blumenthal


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“An engrossing personal narrative and a thoughtful reflection on leadership.” —Henry Kissinger

In a life that has spanned nearly nine decades and has taken him across the world and back, W. Michael Blumenthal has borne witness to the world’s convulsions and transformations during the twentieth century. Born in Germany between the two world wars, Blumenthal narrowly escaped the Nazi horror, when, in 1939, he and his family fled to Shanghai’s chaotic Jewish ghetto, where they spent the entirety of the Second World War. From these fraught and humble beginnings, Blumenthal would emerge as a major leader in American business and politics. In the second half of the century, Blumenthal headed two major American corporations—Bendix and Burroughs (later Unisys); served as a United States trade ambassador in the State Department and the White House, advising John F. Kennedy and Lyndon Johnson; and served under Jimmy Carter as the Secretary of the Treasury. After his retirement from business and politics, he began an entirely new chapter in his career, when he conceived and served as the director of Europe’s largest Jewish museum—the Jewish Museum of Berlin—a position he still holds today. An essential autobiography by one of America’s great political figures, From Exile to Washington is an engaging chronicle of the twentieth century’s greatest upheavals, and a tribute to a lifetime of courage, leadership and decisiveness.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781468311006
Publisher: The Overlook Press
Publication date: 07/21/2015
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 464
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 8.90(h) x 1.10(d)
Age Range: 18 Years

About the Author

W. Michael Blumenthal was the United States Secretary of the Treasury in the Carter administration from 1977 to 1979. Born in Germany in 1926, he moved to the United States in 1947 and was educated at Berkeley and Princeton. He served as an Ambassador and Deputy Special Representative for trade negotiations under John F. Kennedy and Lyndon Johnson, and was Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of the Bendix and Burroughs (later Unisys) Corporations. He is currently the director of the Jewish Museum of Berlin, and is the author of The Invisible Wall: Germans and Jews. He splits his time between Princeton, New York, and Berlin.

Table of Contents

Preface ix

The Thirties Germany in Trouble: In Nazi Berlin 3

The Forties The War Years: Shanghai 61

The Fifties Postwar USA: Apprenticeship Years 117

The Sixties Washington 179

The Seventies A World in Transition 225

The Seventies II The Carter Years 269

The Eighties Globalism 333

The Nineties A New Germany 373

Notes 413

Acknowledgments 423

Index 425

What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher

Praise for The Invisible Wall:

"Blumenthal brings Jewish history in Germany alive by telling about his ancestors' lives." --Library Journal

"An utterly absorbing account of German Jewry from the early 18th century to the Holocaust . . . a crisply written, personal, anecdotally rich history of a glorious and ultimately tragic community." --Kirkus Reviews

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