Friday, April 12, 2013

Friday 56: The Secretary: A Journey with Hillary Clinton From Beirut to the Heart of American Power

* Grab the book nearest you. Right now.
* Turn to page 56 or 56% on your e-reader/
* Find the fifth sentence.
* Post that sentence (plus one or two others if you like) along with these instructions 
on your blog or (if you do not have your own blog) in the comments section of this blog.
Post a link along with your post back to this blog and to Freda's Voice at
* Don't dig for your favorite book, the coolest, the most intellectual. Use the CLOSEST.

Here's my Friday 56 from The Secretary:

Hezbollah strived to liberate the swath of occupied land until Israel withdrew in 2000.  An ally of Iran and Syria, the Party of God was also working tis way into Lebanese national politics while holding on to its arsenal.

The blurb:
The Secretary is the first book of its kind: a foreign correspondent and author with both an insider and a global perspective. Ghattas had unparalleled access to Hillary Clinton and her entourage for four years.  She draws on extensive interviews with Clinton, administrative officials, and other players around Washington and overseas to paint an intimate portrait of one of the most powerful global politicians in the world.

Populated by a cast of real-life characters, The Secretary tells the story of Hillary Clinton as America's envoy to the world in compelling details: from the first days of the Obama administration to the drama of WikiLeaks and the "Arab Spring" uprisings.  Through Ghatta's eyes, we see Clinton under the intense professional spotlight of high stakes diplomacy but also in the softer lighting of the more personal nuances of foreign relations - cheerfully boarding her plane at 3 am after no sleep, or cajoling foreign ministers to keep the coalition together during the war in Libya, all the while trying to restore American leadership.

Viewed through Ghatta's vantage point as a half-Dutch, half-Lebanese citizen who grew up in the crossfire of the Lebanese civil war, the book offers a close-up of diplomacy at the highest level while seeking to answer pivotal questions about the United States. Is America still the global superpower?  If not, who or what will replace it, and what will it mean for America and the world?

About the Author:
Kim Ghattas has been BBC's State Department Radio and TV correspondent since 2008 and travels regularly with the secretary of state. She was previously a Middle East correspondent for the BBC and the Financial Times, based in Beirut.  Ghattas was part of an Emmy Award-winning BBC team covering the Lebanon-Israel conflict of 2006.  Her work has also appeared in Time magazine, the Boston Globe, the Washington Post, and on NPR radio.  She lives in Washington, D.C.

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