Wednesday, April 29, 2009

PICKING UP THE REINS by Norman Moss in Publishers Weekly

More praise for Norman Moss's eloquent study of America, Britain, and the Postwar world, Picking Up the Reins, in Publishers Weekly: "A precarious world recuperating fromthe horrors of WWII and clawing for stability emerges in author Moss’s portrait of Britain andAmerica in the postwar world. While today American dominance may seem an inevitable fact, Moss outlines how a crumbling Great Britain “turned over its now-faded world leadership to the UnitedStates.” With great attention to historical details, Moss evinces thevarious American motivations for accepting that position: to limit the Communist threat, which in turn would limit the need for future defense spending; to unite the disparate European nations and secure the American ideal of “free institutions”; and to maintain European markets forAmerican goods. Moss describes the political and diplomatic give-and-take thatled to the Marshall Plan, NATO and othersteps that made America a world power. Very informative, this book will also entertain readers with Moss’s irreverent metaphors (he compares Ernest Bevin’ s reluctance to become entangled in European alliances to “a commitment-phobic man on a date”). It’s a timely analysis of the development of America’s role in international diplomacy at a time when the world’s balance of power could again shift."

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