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The Realist Prism: A Bismarckian Approach for Today's World

Friday, Dec. 18, 2009

In discussing my proposal last week for a Sino-Indian Convention that would define 21st century spheres of influence in Central Asia, a colleague suggested that it was an idea that Otto von Bismarck would have been proud of. They didn't mean it as a compliment.

We think of Bismarck as a caricature of the old European warlord, peering through a monocled eye while croaking about decisions forged in "blood and iron." Most of all, we see him as someone whose policies were designed for personal and imperial aggrandizement, not the betterment of the people. We distrust his approach to the world because it seems unsavory -- built on deals conducted in back rooms with no regard to the popular will. ...

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