Diplomatic Sayings And Quotes

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How have you been?” my father asked. Say something diplomatic . . . something . . . “If you build a tower in Lawrenceville, I will smash it, set it on fire, and salt the ground it stood on.
Ilona Andrews (Magic Shifts (Kate Daniels, #8))
A diplomat who says “yes” means “maybe", a diplomat who says “maybe" means “no”, and a diplomat who says “no” is no diplomat.
Charles Maurice de Talleyrand-Périgord
If the truth doesn't save us, what does that say about us?
Lois McMaster Bujold (Diplomatic Immunity (Vorkosigan Saga, #13))
You had this young man with you for... what, six years?" Halt shrugged. "Near enough," he replied. "And did you ever understand a word he was saying?" "Not a lot of the time, no," Halt said. Crowley shook his head in wonder. "It's just as well he didn't go into the Diplomatic Service. We'd be at war with half a dozen countries by now if he was on the loose." Will drew a deep breath to begin talking. He noticed that both men took an involuntary half step backward and he decided he'd better try to keep it as simple as possible.
John Flanagan (The Sorcerer in the North (Ranger's Apprentice, #5))
These, gentlemen, are my rules: if I don't succeed, I keep trying; if I do succeed, I keep quiet; and in any case I don't undermine anyone. I'm not an intriguer, and I'm proud of it. I wouldn't make a good diplomat. They also say, gentlemen, that the bird flies to the fowler. That's true, and I'm ready to agree: but who is the fowler here, and who is the bird? That's still a question, gentlemen!
Fyodor Dostoevsky (The Double)
I always say that it’s not really been a good day if you haven’t caused a major diplomatic incident by lunchtime,’ Otto said with a grin.
Mark Walden (Deadlock (H.I.V.E., #8))
You can dance. You can make me laugh. You've got x-ray eyes. You know how to sing. You're a diplomat. You've got it all. Everybody loves you. You can charm the birds out of the sky, But I, I've got one thing. You always know just what to say And when to go, But I've got one thing. You can see in the dark, But I've got one thing: I loved you better. Last night I woke up, Saw this angel. He flew in my window. And he said, Girl, pretty proud of yourself, huh?" And I looked around and said, Who me?" And he said, "The higher you fly, the faster you fall." He said, "Send it up. Watch it rise. See it fall, Gravity's rainbow. Send it up. Watch it rise. See it fall, Gravity's Angel.
Laurie Anderson
Pick a leader who will not only bail out banks and airlines, but also families from losing their homes -- or jobs due to their companies moving to other countries. Pick a leader who will fund schools, not limit spending on education and allow libraries to close. Pick a leader who chooses diplomacy over war. An honest broker in foreign relations. A leader with integrity, one who says what they mean, keeps their word and does not lie to their people. Pick a leader who is strong and confident, yet humble. Intelligent, but not sly. A leader who encourages diversity, not racism. One who understands the needs of the farmer, the teacher, the doctor, and the environmentalist -- not only the banker, the oil tycoon, the weapons developer, or the insurance and pharmaceutical lobbyist.
Suzy Kassem (Rise Up and Salute the Sun: The Writings of Suzy Kassem)
For everyone who, having no artistic sense-that is to say, no submission to subjective reality-may have the knack of reasoning about art till doomsday, especially if he be, in addition, a diplomat or financier in contact with the 'realities' of the present day, is only too ready to believe literature is an intellectual game which is destined to gradually be abandoned as time goes on.
Marcel Proust (Time Regained)
Author says her father was so diplomatic that when people came to him for solutions, people not only accepted them, but they believed they thought of them.
Immaculée Ilibagiza (Left to Tell: Discovering God Amidst the Rwandan Holocaust)
A good zoo is a place of carefully worked-out coincidence: exactly where an animal says to us, "Stay out!"...we say to it, "Stay in!" with our barriers. Under such conditions of diplomatic peace, all animals are content and we can relax and have a look at each other.
Yann Martel (Life of Pi)
And a variety of more colorful names. Hypothetically.” The privateer cast him an assessing glance. “Just how did you know I wasn’t who I claimed to be, Mister Brekker?” Kaz shrugged. “You speak Kerch like a native—a rich native. You don’t talk like someone who came up with sailors and street thugs.” The privateer turned slightly, giving Kaz his full attention. His ease was gone, and now he looked like a man who might command armies. “Mister Brekker,” he said. “Kaz, if I may? I am in a vulnerable position. I am a king ruling a country with an empty treasury, facing enemies on all sides. There are also forces within my country that might seize any absence as an opportunity to make their own bid for power.” “So you’re saying you’d make an excellent hostage.” “I suspect that the ransom for me would be considerably less than the price Kuwei has on his head. Really, it’s a bit of a blow to my self-esteem.” “You don’t seem to be suffering,” said Kaz. “Sturmhond was a creation of my youth, and his reputation still serves me well. I cannot bid on Kuwei Yul-Bo as the king of Ravka. I hope your plan will play out the way you think it will. But if it doesn’t, the loss of such a prize would be seen as a humiliating blunder diplomatically and strategically. I enter that auction as Sturmhond or as no one at all. If that is a problem—” Kaz settled his hands on his cane. “As long as you don’t try to con me, you can enter as the Fairy Queen of Istamere.
Leigh Bardugo (Crooked Kingdom (Six of Crows, #2))
But it is not, as we say when we are being diplomatic, a fruitful source of inquiry.
Robin McKinley (The Blue Sword (Damar, #1))
The very word "secrecy" is repugnant in a free and open society; and we are as a people inherently and historically opposed to secret societies, to secret oaths and to secret proceedings...Our way of life is under attack. Those who make themselves our enemy are advancing around the globe...no war ever posed a greater threat to our security. If you are awaiting a finding of "clear and present danger," then I can only say that the danger has never been more clear and its presence has never been more imminent...For we are opposed around the world by a monolithic and ruthless conspiracy that relies primarily on covert means for expanding its sphere of influence–on infiltration instead of invasion, on subversion instead of elections, on intimidation instead of free choice, on guerrillas by night instead of armies by day. It is a system which has conscripted vast human and material resources into the building of a tightly knit, highly efficient machine that combines military, diplomatic, intelligence, economic, scientific and political operations. Its preparations are concealed, not published. Its mistakes are buried, not headlined. Its dissenters are silenced, not praised. No expenditure is questioned, no rumor is printed, no secret is revealed.
John F. Kennedy
You tell me that class distinctions are baubles used by monarchs, I defy you to show me a republic, ancient or modern, in which distinctions have not existed. You call these medals and ribbons baubles; well, it is with such baubles that men are led. I would not say this in public, but in a assembly of wise statesmen it should be said. I don't think that the French love liberty and equality: the French are not changed by ten years of revolution: they are what the Gauls were, fierce and fickle. They have one feeling: honour. We must nourish that feeling. The people clamour for distinction. See how the crowd is awed by the medals and orders worn by foreign diplomats. We must recreate these distinctions. There has been too much tearing down; we must rebuild. A government exists, yes and power, but the nation itself - what is it? Scattered grains of sand.
Napoléon Bonaparte
It’s been a while since I probed someone’s subconscious this deeply, and if you recall, the last time ended in less than ideal results.” – Quinn “That’s a diplomatic way to say the guy stroked out during the session.” - Tzader
Sherrilyn Kenyon (Alterant (Belador, #2))
When other countries run sustained trade deficits, they must finance these by selling off domestic assets or running into debt — debt which they actually are obliged to pay. It seems that only the Americans are so bold as to say “Screw the world. We’re going to do whatever we want.” Other countries simply cannot afford the chaos from which the U.S. economy is positioned to withstand as a result of the fact that foreign trade plays a smaller role in its economy than in those of nearly all other nations in today’s interdependent world. Using debtor leverage to set the terms on which it will refrain from causing monetary chaos, America has turned seeming financial weakness into strength. U.S. Government debt has reached so large a magnitude that any attempt to replace it will entail an interregnum of financial chaos and political instability. American diplomats have learned that they are well positioned to come out on top in such grab-bags.
Michael Hudson (The Bubble and Beyond)
Everyone who was ever a guest of Theodore Roosevelt was astonished at the range and diversity of his knowledge. Whether his visitor was a cowboy or a Rough Rider, a New York politician or a diplomat, Roosevelt knew what to say. And how was it done? The answer was simple. Whenever Roosevelt expected a visitor, he sat up late the night before, reading up on the subject in which he knew his guest was particularly interested.
Dale Carnegie (How to Win Friends and Influence People)
Playing pool with Korean officials one evening in the Koryo Hotel, which has become the nightspot for foreign businessmen and an increasing number of diplomats (to say nothing of the burgeoning number of spies and journalists traveling under second identities), I was handed that day's edition of the Pyongyang Times. At first glance it seemed too laughable for words: endless pictures of the 'Dear Leader'—Little Boy's exalted title—as he was garlanded by adoring schoolchildren and heroic tractor drivers. Yet even in these turgid pages there were nuggets: a telegram congratulating the winner of the Serbian elections; a candid reference to the 'hardship period' through which the country had been passing; an assurance that a certain nuclear power plant would be closed as part of a deal with Washington. Tiny cracks, to be sure. But a complete and rigid edifice cannot afford fissures, however small. There appear to be no hookers, as yet, in Pyongyang. Yet if casinos come, can working girls be far behind? One perhaps ought not to wish for hookers, but there are circumstances when corruption is the only hope.
Christopher Hitchens (Love, Poverty, and War: Journeys and Essays)
George Lansbury, an aging Labour Party official, backed up the Conservative PM by telling the House, “I hear all this denunciation of Herr Hitler and Signor Mussolini. I have met both of them, and can only say that they are very much like any other politician or diplomat one meets.
Thomas E. Ricks (Churchill & Orwell: The Fight for Freedom)
In the Oval Office, President Bush told Khalilzad, “Musharraf denies all of what you are saying.” “Didn’t they deny, Mr. President, for years that they had a nuclear program?” 8 Bush said he would call Musharraf and arrange for the ambassador to meet with him, to discuss the accusations directly. Khalilzad flew to Islamabad. Beforehand, he sent Musharraf a gift, a crate of Afghan pomegranates. When they sat down, Musharraf thanked him, but added that he hated pomegranates—too many seeds. They talked extensively about Musharraf’s usual complaints about the Afghan government—too many Panjshiris in key security positions, too many Indian spies under diplomatic cover in Kabul and elsewhere. Khalilzad proposed a joint intelligence investigation between the United States and Pakistan to document any covert Indian activity in Afghanistan. “There are no Taliban here,” Musharraf said blankly. 9
Steve Coll (Directorate S: The C.I.A. and America's Secret Wars in Afghanistan and Pakistan, 2001-2016)
When a diplomat says ‘yes’ he means ‘maybe.’ When a diplomat says ‘maybe’ he means ‘no.’ But if a diplomat says ‘no’ he’s no diplomat.
Alan Furst (Midnight in Europe (Night Soldiers #13))
An ambassador is someone who thinks twice before he says nothing” - attributed to one of India's ambassadors in Argentina at the time.
Tony Leon (The Accidental Ambassador)
Addy,” said Mrs. Kaur. “I’ll still have to log it, and account for it later.” “Blame me,” said Robin at once. One thick black eyebrow arched. Miss Morrissey leaned forward and smiled at her sister. “Would you say Sir Robert is a threatening figure?” “Er,” said Mrs. Kaur. It was the most diplomatic single syllable Robin had ever heard. “Are you afraid for your maidenly virtue?” “I’m married, Addy,” said Kitty Kaur dryly. “I have none.” She eyed Robin. “He does seem the kind of well-built, pugnacious fellow who would follow through on a threat of bodily harm.” “I beg your pardon,” Robin began to protest, and then the penny dropped. “Oh. Would it help if I raised my voice?” “Yes, that would do nicely. Sir Robert strong-armed my sister into bringing him here to seek my help, and threatened us with harm unless I abused my access to the lockroom in order to locate Mr. Courcey. Overcome by concern for his friend, of course, but still. Most brutish behavior.” “And we are but feeble women,” said Miss Morrissey. “Woe.” “Your sister is a magician,” Robin said, pointing out what seemed the largest hole in this story. “Woe,” said Mrs. Kaur firmly, and Robin recalled what Miss Morrissey had said about the assumptions made by men.
Freya Marske (A Marvellous Light (The Last Binding, #1))
For, as the German diplomat and philosopher Max Scheler wrote, “He who has not, as it were, looked into the abyss of the absolute Nothing will completely overlook the eminently positive content of the realization that there is something rather than nothing.” Let us, then, dip briefly into that abyss, with full assurance that we will not come up empty-handed. For, as the old saying goes: Nothing seek, nothing find.
Jim Holt (Why Does the World Exist?: An Existential Detective Story)
The very word "secrecy" is repugnant in a free and open society; and we are as a people inherently and historically opposed to secret societies, to secret oaths and to secret proceedings...Our way of life is under attack. Those who make themselves our enemy are advancing around the globe...no war ever posed a greater threat to our security. If you are awaiting a finding of "clear and present danger," then I can only say that the danger has never been more clear and its presence has never been more imminent...For we are opposed around the world by a monolithic and ruthless conspiracy that relies primarily on covert means for expanding its sphere of influence–on infiltration instead of invasion, on subversion instead of elections, on intimidation instead of free choice, on guerrillas by night instead of armies by day. It is a system which has conscripted vast human and material resources into the building of a tightly knit, highly efficient machine that combines military, diplomatic, intelligence, economic, scientific and political operations. Its preparations are concealed, not published. Its mistakes are buried, not headlined. Its dissenters are silenced, not praised. No expenditure is questioned, no rumor is printed, no secret is revealed.
ohn F. Kennedy
Do you think I could write an advice column?” Ash strove to find a diplomatic way to say No, definitely not. “Well, perhaps of the more bracing sort. Some people do like being flogged. Specialized interest, you know.
Cat Sebastian (A Duke in Disguise (Regency Imposters, #2))
Saying what is truly on your mind, giving your honest opinion and answering questions truthfully is an overwhelmingly bad thing to do in a social setting. Being polite and diplomatic relies heavily on your skills to twist the truth so it doesn’t upset anyone.
Estelle Ryan (The Gauguin Connection (Genevieve Lenard, #1))
You’re saying I am not a credible eyewitness,” Lowen repeated. “Because I was part of that diplomatic mission, Mr. Vinicius. In fact, not only was I there, I also conducted the autopsy that established that Liu Cong’s death was murder, and also helped identify how it was the murder was accomplished. When you say that the eyewitness reports are not credible, you’re talking about me, specifically and directly. If what you’re saying actually reflects the opinion of the Ministry of External Relations, then we have a problem. A very large problem.
John Scalzi (The Human Division (Old Man's War, #5))
The Brazilian diplomat Josué de Castro, in his book The Geopolitics of Hunger, was even bolder in his criticism of the neo-Malthusians, saying that ‘The road to survival, therefore, does not lie in the neo-Malthusian prescriptions to eliminate surplus people, nor in birth control, but in the effort to make everybody on the face of the earth productive.’ In
Matt Ridley (The Evolution of Everything: How New Ideas Emerge)
It’d be far better if you were intimidated by what lies ahead—humbled by its magnitude and determined to see it through regardless. Leave passion for the amateurs. Make it about what you feel you must do and say, not what you care about and wish to be. Remember Talleyrand’s epigram for diplomats, “Surtout, pas trop de zèle” (“Above all, not too much zeal”). Then you will do great things. Then you will stop being your old, good-intentioned, but ineffective self.
Ryan Holiday (Ego Is the Enemy)
At Caltech, Millikan was upset with Einstein’s activism, and wrote him to say so. Einstein responded diplomatically. “It cannot be my affair,” he agreed, “to insist in a matter that concerns only the citizens of your country.” Millikan thought Einstein naïve in his politics, as did many people. To some extent he was, but it should be remembered that his qualms about the convictions of the Scottsboro Boys and Mooney proved justified, and his advocacy of racial and social justice turned out to be on the right side of history. Despite his association with the Zionist cause, Einstein’s sympathies extended to the Arabs who were being displaced by the influx of Jews into what would eventually be Israel. His message was a prophetic one. “Should we be unable to find a way to honest cooperation and honest pacts with the Arabs,” he wrote Weizmann in 1929, “then we have learned absolutely nothing during our 2,000 years of suffering.
Walter Isaacson (Einstein: His Life and Universe)
Being diplomatic, I’d say Kipps was a slightly built young man in his early twenties, with close-cut reddish hair and a narrow, freckled face. Being undiplomatic (but more precise), I’d say he’s a pint-sized, pug-nosed, carrot-topped inadequate with a chip the size of Big Ben on his weedy shoulder. A sneer on legs. A malevolent buffoon. He’s too old to be any good with ghosts, but that doesn’t stop him wearing the blingiest rapier you’ll ever see, weighed down to the pommel with cheap paste jewels.
Jonathan Stroud (The Whispering Skull (Lockwood & Co., #2))
How many times have we heard an African official or a “black authority” saying, “We blacks, we are cursed, it is as if we were destined to remain inferior, retarded, to remain Negroes! Yes, we are cursed, we will never develop as the Asians or the whites do, we are not capable, mentally or intellectually, we are condemned to remain Negroes forever, always behind the others, cursed”! I have heard similar words coming from the mouth of ministers, ambassadors, African diplomats, some expressing themselves in front of their young children, who drank their words.
Yves Kayemb Uriël Nawej (White Poison: A Black Christian is a Traitor to the Memory of his Ancestors - Africa Wake Up!)
Oh, Daisy, it’s revolting, the way I want to fawn all over him. I’m afraid that I’m going to do something dreadfully silly today. Burst into song or something. For God’s sake, don’t let me.” “I won’t,” Daisy promised, smiling back at her. “Are you in love, then?” “That word is not to be mentioned,” Lillian said swiftly. “Even if I were— and I am not admitting anything— I would never be the first to say it. It’s a matter of pride. And there’s every chance that he won’t say it back, but just respond with a polite ‘thank you,’ in which case I would have to murder him. Or myself.” “I hope the earl is not equally as stubborn as you,” Daisy commented. “He isn’t,” Lillian assured her. “Although he thinks he is.” Some private memory caused her to chortle, clasping a hand to her forehead. “Oh, Daisy,” she said with devilish glee, “I’m going to be such an abominable countess.” “Let’s not put it that way,” Daisy said diplomatically. “Rather, we’ll say ‘unconventional countess.’ ” “I can be any kind of countess I want,” Lillian said, half in delight, half in wonder. “Westcliff said so. And what’s more… I actually think he means it.
Lisa Kleypas (It Happened One Autumn (Wallflowers, #2))
Oh, but being American has less to do with one’s proficiency in English and more with the assumptions you hold dear and true—your inalienable rights, your pursuit of happiness. I, sad to say, don’t possess those assumptions. I cannot undertake the pursuit.” “Well, you understand us,” Bennie said. “So that makes you at least an honorary American.” “Why is it such an honor?” Wendy said peevishly. “Not everyone wants to be an American.” Although Bennie was annoyed, he laughed. Walter, ever the diplomat, said to Bennie, “Well, I’m flattered that you consider me to be one of your own.
Amy Tan (Saving Fish from Drowning)
The fears of militarization Holbrooke had expressed in his final, desperate memos, had come to pass on a scale he could have never anticipated. President Trump had concentrated ever more power in the Pentagon, granting it nearly unilateral authority in areas of policy once orchestrated across multiple agencies, including the State Department. In Iraq and Syria, the White House quietly delegated more decisions on troop deployments to the military. In Yemen and Somalia, field commanders were given authority to launch raids without White House approval. In Afghanistan, Trump granted the secretary of defense, General James Mattis, sweeping authority to set troop levels. In public statements, the White House downplayed the move, saying the Pentagon still had to adhere to the broad strokes of policies set by the White House. But in practice, the fate of thousands of troops in a diplomatic tinderbox of a conflict had, for the first time in recent history, been placed solely in military hands. Diplomats were no longer losing the argument on Afghanistan: they weren’t in it. In early 2018, the military began publicly rolling out a new surge: in the following months, up to a thousand new troops would join the fourteen thousand already in place. Back home, the White House itself was crowded with military voices. A few months into the Trump administration, at least ten of twenty-five senior leadership positions on the president’s National Security Council were held by current or retired military officials. As the churn of firings and hirings continued, that number grew to include the White House chief of staff, a position given to former general John Kelly. At the same time, the White House ended the practice of “detailing” State Department officers to the National Security Council. There would now be fewer diplomatic voices in the policy process, by design.
Ronan Farrow (War on Peace: The End of Diplomacy and the Decline of American Influence)
Louis XIV was a very proud and self-confident man. He had such and such mistresses, and such and such ministers, and he governed France badly. The heirs of Louis XIV were also weak men, and also governed France badly. They also had such and such favourites and such and such mistresses. Besides which, certain persons were at this time writing books. By the end of the eighteenth century there gathered in Paris two dozen or so persons who started saying that all men were free and equal. Because of this in the whole of France people began to slaughter and drown each other. These people killed the king and a good many others. At this time there was a man of genius in France – Napoleon. He conquered everyone everywhere, i.e. killed a great many people because he was a great genius; and, for some reason, he went off to kill Africans, and killed them so well, and was so clever and cunning, that, having arrived in France, he ordered everyone to obey him, which they did. Having made himself Emperor he again went to kill masses of people in Italy, Austria and Prussia. And there too he killed a great many. Now in Russia there was the Emperor Alexander, who decided to reestablish order in Europe, and therefore fought wars with Napoleon. But in the year ’07 he suddenly made friends with him, and in the year ’11 quarrelled with him again, and they both again began to kill a great many people. And Napoleon brought six hundred thousand men to Russia and conquered Moscow. But then he suddenly ran away from Moscow, and then the Emperor Alexander, aided by the advice of Stein and others, united Europe to raise an army against the disturber of her peace. All Napoleon’s allies suddenly became his enemies; and this army marched against Napoleon, who had gathered new forces. The allies conquered Napoleon, entered Paris, forced Napoleon to renounce the throne, and sent him to the island of Elba, without, however, depriving him of the title of Emperor, and showing him all respect, in spite of the fact that five years before, and a year after, everyone considered him a brigand and beyond the law. Thereupon Louis XVIII, who until then had been an object of mere ridicule to both Frenchmen and the allies, began to reign. As for Napoleon, after shedding tears before the Old Guard, he gave up his throne, and went into exile. Then astute statesmen and diplomats, in particular Talleyrand, who had managed to sit down before anyone else in the famous armchair1 and thereby to extend the frontiers of France, talked in Vienna, and by means of such talk made peoples happy or unhappy. Suddenly the diplomats and monarchs almost came to blows. They were almost ready to order their troops once again to kill each other; but at this moment Napoleon arrived in France with a battalion, and the French, who hated him, all immediately submitted to him. But this annoyed the allied monarchs very much and they again went to war with the French. And the genius Napoleon was defeated and taken to the island of St Helena, having suddenly been discovered to be an outlaw. Whereupon the exile, parted from his dear ones and his beloved France, died a slow death on a rock, and bequeathed his great deeds to posterity. As for Europe, a reaction occurred there, and all the princes began to treat their peoples badly once again.
Isaiah Berlin (Russian Thinkers)
Can I have your pineapple upside-down cake recipe?” “Sure, darling. It’s just yellow box cake with Del Monte pineapple and brown sugar and a maraschino cherry on top. Just make sure you get the rings and not the chunks.” This cake sounds horrible. I try to nod in a diplomatic way, but Stormy is onto me. Crossly she says, “Do you think I had time to sit around baking cakes from scratch like some boring old housewife?” “You could never be boring,” I say on cue, because it’s true and because I know it’s what she wants to hear. “You could do with a little less baking and a little more living life.” She’s being prickly, and she’s never prickly with me. “Youth is truly wasted on the young.
Jenny Han (P.S. I Still Love You (To All the Boys I've Loved Before, #2))
The great majority of those who, like Frankl, were liberated from Nazi concentration camps chose to leave for other countries rather than return to their former homes, where far too many neighbors had turned murderous. But Viktor Frankl chose to stay in his native Vienna after being freed and became head of neurology at a main hospital in Vienna. The Austrians he lived among often perplexed Frankl by saying they did not know a thing about the horrors of the camps he had barely survived. For Frankl, though, this alibi seemed flimsy. These people, he felt, had chosen not to know. Another survivor of the Nazis, the social psychologist Ervin Staub, was saved from a certain death by Raoul Wallenberg, the diplomat who made Swedish passports for thousands of desperate Hungarians, keeping them safe from the Nazis. Staub studied cruelty and hatred, and he found one of the roots of such evil to be the turning away, choosing not to see or know, of bystanders. That not-knowing was read by perpetrators as a tacit approval. But if instead witnesses spoke up in protest of evil, Staub saw, it made such acts more difficult for the evildoers. For Frankl, the “not-knowing” he encountered in postwar Vienna was regarding the Nazi death camps scattered throughout that short-lived empire, and the obliviousness of Viennese citizens to the fate of their own neighbors who were imprisoned and died in those camps. The underlying motive for not-knowing, he points out, is to escape any sense of responsibility or guilt for those crimes. People in general, he saw, had been encouraged by their authoritarian rulers not to know—a fact of life today as well. That same plea of innocence, I had no idea, has contemporary resonance in the emergence of an intergenerational tension. Young people around the world are angry at older generations for leaving as a legacy to them a ruined planet, one where the momentum of environmental destruction will go on for decades, if not centuries. This environmental not-knowing has gone on for centuries, since the Industrial Revolution. Since then we have seen the invention of countless manufacturing platforms and processes, most all of which came to be in an era when we had no idea of their ecological impacts. Advances in science and technology are making ecological impacts more transparent, and so creating options that address the climate crisis and, hopefully, will be pursued across the globe and over generations. Such disruptive, truly “green” alternatives are one way to lessen the bleakness of Earth 2.0—the planet in future decades—a compelling fact of life for today’s young. Were Frankl with us today (he died in 1997), he would no doubt be pleased that so many of today’s younger people are choosing to know and are finding purpose and meaning in surfacing environmental facts and acting on them.
Viktor E. Frankl (Yes to Life: In Spite of Everything)
When the moment of departure arrived, Catherine and Peter accompanied Johanna on the short first stage of her journey, from Tsarskoe Selo to nearby Krasnoe Selo. The next morning, Johanna left before dawn without saying goodbye; Catherine assumed that it was “not to make me any sadder.” Waking up and finding her mother’s room empty, she was distraught. Her mother had vanished—from Russia and from her life. Since Catherine’s birth, Johanna had always been present, to guide, prompt, correct, and scold. She might have failed as a diplomatic agent; she certainly had not become a brilliant figure on the European stage; but she had not been unsuccessful as a mother. Her daughter, born a minor German princess, was now an imperial grand duchess on a path to becoming an empress.
Robert K. Massie (Catherine the Great: Portrait of a Woman)
half-century before, at Stalin’s direct order, NKVD executioners slaughtered fifteen thousand Polish military officers and threw the bodies into rows of mass graves. The month-long operation in Kalinin, Katyn, and Starobelsk was part of Stalin’s attempt to begin the domination of Poland. The young officers had been among the best-educated men in Poland, and Stalin saw them as a potential danger, as enemies-in-advance. For decades after, Moscow put the blame for the killings on the Nazis, saying the Germans had carried out the massacres in 1941, not the NKVD in 1940. The Kremlin propaganda machine sustained the fiction in speeches, diplomatic negotiations, and textbooks, weaving it into the vast fabric of ideology and official history that sustained the regime and its empire.
David Remnick (Lenin's Tomb: The Last Days of the Soviet Empire (Pulitzer Prize Winner))
What is the situation at Ramsay House?” Kev asked, half-dreading the answer. “There were a few moments of chaos this morning, when it was discovered that you were both gone.” A diplomatic pause. “Harrow’s been insisting that Win was taken against her will. At one point he threatened to go to the parish constable. Harrow says if you don’t return with Win by nightfall, he’ll take drastic action.” “What would that be?” Kev inquired darkly. “I don’t know. But you might give a thought to the rest of us having to stay at Ramsay House with him while you’re out here with his fiancée.” “She’s my fiancée now. And I’ll bring her back when I damn well please.” “Understood.” Cam’s lips twitched. “You intend to marry her soon, I hope?” “Not soon,” Kev said. “Immediately.” “Thank God. Even for the Hathaways, this is all a bit untoward.
Lisa Kleypas (Seduce Me at Sunrise (The Hathaways, #2))
REQUIREMENTS TO BE GREAT AT RUNNING HR What kind of person should you look for to comprehensively and continuously understand the quality of your management team? Here are some key requirements:   World-class process design skills Much like the head of quality assurance, the head of HR must be a masterful process designer. One key to accurately measuring critical management processes is excellent process design and control.   A true diplomat Nobody likes a tattletale and there is no way for an HR organization to be effective if the management team doesn’t implicitly trust it. Managers must believe that HR is there to help them improve rather than police them. Great HR leaders genuinely want to help the managers and couldn’t care less about getting credit for identifying problems. They will work directly with the managers to get quality up and only escalate to the CEO when necessary. If an HR leader hoards knowledge, makes power plays, or plays politics, he will be useless.   Industry knowledge Compensation, benefits, best recruiting practices, etc. are all fast-moving targets. The head of HR must be deeply networked in the industry and stay abreast of all the latest developments.   Intellectual heft to be the CEO’s trusted adviser None of the other skills matter if the CEO does not fully back the head of HR in holding the managers to a high quality standard. In order for this to happen, the CEO must trust the HR leader’s thinking and judgment.   Understanding things unspoken When management quality starts to break down in a company, nobody says anything about it, but super-perceptive people can tell that the company is slipping. You need one of those.
Ben Horowitz (The Hard Thing About Hard Things: Building a Business When There Are No Easy Answers)
When Camilla and her husband joined Prince Charles on a holiday in Turkey shortly before his polo accident, she didn’t complain just as she bore, through gritted teeth, Camilla’s regular invitations to Balmoral and Sandringham. When Charles flew to Italy last year on a sketching holiday, Diana’s friends noted that Camilla was staying at another villa a short drive away. On her return Mrs Parker-Bowles made it quite clear that any suggestion of impropriety was absurd. Her protestations of innocence brought a tight smile from the Princess. That changed to scarcely controlled anger during their summer holiday on board a Greek tycoon’s yacht. She quietly simmered as she heard her husband holding forth to dinner-party guests about the virtues of mistresses. Her mood was scarcely helped when, later that evening, she heard him chatting on the telephone to Camilla. They meet socially on occasion but, there is no love lost between these two women locked into an eternal triangle of rivalry. Diana calls her rival “the rotweiller” while Camilla refers to the Princess as that “ridiculous creature”. At social engagements they are at pains to avoid each other. Diana has developed a technique in public of locating Camilla as quickly as possible and then, depending on her mood, she watches Charles when he looks in her direction or simply evades her gaze. “It is a morbid game,” says a friend. Days before the Salisbury Cathedral spire appeal concert Diana knew that Camilla was going. She vented her frustration in conversations with friends so that on the day of the event the Princess was able to watch the eye contact between her husband and Camilla with quiet amusement. Last December all those years of pent-up emotion came flooding out at a memorial service for Leonora Knatchbull, the six-year-old daughter of Lord and Lady Romsey, who tragically died of cancer. As Diana left the service, held at St James’s Palace, she was photographed in tears. She was weeping in sorrow but also in anger. Diana was upset that Camilla Parker Bowles who had only known the Romseys for a short time was also present at such an intimate family service. It was a point she made vigorously to her husband as they travelled back to Kensington Palace in their chauffeur-driven limousine. When they arrived at Kensington Palace the Princess felt so distressed that she ignored the staff Christmas party, which was then in full swing, and went to her sitting-room to recover her composure. Diplomatically, Peter Westmacott, the Wales’s deputy private secretary, sent her avuncular detective Ken Wharfe to help calm her.
Andrew Morton (Diana: Her True Story in Her Own Words)
Have a seat,” I say inside the Roosevelt Room. Ordinarily we’d do this in the Oval Office. But I’m not having this conversation in the Oval Office. He unbuttons his suit jacket and takes a seat. I sit at the head of the table. “Needless to say, Mr. President, we were elated with the results from yesterday. And we were grateful that we could be a small part of your success.” “Yes, Mr. Ambassador.” “Andrei, please.” Andrei Ivanenko looks like he could play someone’s grandfather in a cereal commercial—the crown of his head bald and spotted, wispy white hair along the sides, an overall frumpy appearance. The look works well for him. Because beneath that harmless-seeming exterior is a career spy, a product of Russia’s charm school and one of the elites in the former KGB, shipped off later in life to the diplomatic arena and sent here as ambassador to the United States.
Bill Clinton (The President Is Missing)
But it isn't easy to find the right person. It would have to be someone good with kids and horses, and ho'd be able to pitch in with the administrating to some extent and wouldn't quibble about shoving manure.Plus I'd have to be able to depend on them, and get along with them. And they'd have to be diplomatic with parents, which is often the trickiest part." Travis picked up his soft drink again. "I might be able to point you in the right direction there." "Oh? Listen, Dad, I appreciate it, but you know, a friend of a friend or the son or daughter of an aquaintance. That kind of thing gets very sticky if it doesn't work out." "Actually, I was thinking of someone a little closer to home.Your mother." "Ma?" With a half laugh, Keeley sat again. "Ma doesn't want this headache, even if she had time for it." "Shows what you know." Smug now, he drank. "Just mention it to her, casually. I won't say a word about it.
Nora Roberts (Irish Rebel (Irish Hearts, #3))
Sara and I are both leaving within the hour. In my carriage." "Together?" Lily looked startled, and then shook her head. "You can't. Don't you realize what people would say when they discovered that both of you were gone?" "Nothing they haven't said already." He slid a proprietary arm around Sara's shoulders. Lily drew her slight frame up as tall as possible, adopting the brisk tone of a chaperone defending her charge. "Where are you planning to go?" Derek smiled slowly. "None of your damn business, gypsy." Ignoring Lily's sputtering protests, he stared down at his fiancée and raised his brows mockingly. As she met his glinting green eyes, Sara realized he intended to take her to London and keep her with him for the night. Her nerves jangled with alarm. "I'm not certain it's advisable-" she began diplomatically, but he cut her off. "Go pack your things." Oh, the arrogance. But it was part of why she loved him, his single-minded determination to get what he wanted. Only blind, bullying stubbornness had enabled him to climb from the gutter. Now that the prospect of marrying her was within his reach, he planned to ensure it by well and truly compromising her. After tonight there would be no turning back. Sara stared at the broad expanse of his chest, conscious of the weight of his arm across her shoulders, the gentle stroke of his thumb and forefinger against her neck. Well... reprehensible as it was, she wanted the same thing. "Derek," Lily said in a steely voice, "I won't allow you to force this poor child into something she's not prepared for-" "She's not a child." His fingers tightened on the back of Sara's neck. "Tell her what you want, Sara." Helplessly Sara raised her head and looked at Lily, her face turning a deep shade of crimson. "I... I'm leaving with Mr. Craven." She didn't have to look at Derek to know that he was smiling in satisfaction.
Lisa Kleypas (Dreaming of You (The Gamblers of Craven's, #2))
Prince Arctic?” A silvery white dragon poked her head around the door, tapping three times lightly on the ice wall. Arctic couldn’t remember her name, which was the kind of faux pas his mother was always yelling at him about. He was a prince; it was his duty to have all the noble dragons memorized along with their ranks so he could treat them according to exactly where they fit in the hierarchy. It was stupid and frustrating and if his mother yelled at him about it one more time, he would seriously enchant something to freeze her mouth shut forever. Oooo. What a beautiful image. Queen Diamond with a chain of silver circles wound around her snout and frozen to her scales. He closed his eyes and imagined the blissful quiet. The dragon at his door shifted slightly, her claws making little scraping sounds to remind him she was there. What was she waiting for? Permission to give him a message? Or was she waiting for him to say her name — and if he didn’t, would she go scurrying back to the queen to report that he had failed again? Perhaps he should enchant a talisman to whisper in his ear whenever he needed to know something. Another tempting idea, but strictly against the rules of IceWing animus magic. Animus dragons are so rare; appreciate your gift and respect the limits the tribe has set. Never use your power frivolously. Never use it for yourself. This power is extremely dangerous. The tribe’s rules are there to protect you. Only the IceWings have figured out how to use animus magic safely. Save it all for your gifting ceremony. Use it only once in your life, to create a glorious gift to benefit the whole tribe, and then never again; that is the only way to be safe. Arctic shifted his shoulders, feeling stuck inside his scales. Rules, rules, and more rules: that was the IceWing way of life. Every direction he turned, every thought he had, was restricted by rules and limits and judgmental faces, particularly his mother’s. The rules about animus magic were just one more way to keep him trapped under her claws. “What is it?” he barked at the strange dragon. Annoyed face, try that. As if he were very busy and she’d interrupted him and that was why he was skipping the usual politic rituals. He was very busy, actually. The gifting ceremony was only three weeks away. It was bad enough that his mother had dragged him here, to their southernmost palace, near the ocean and the border with the Kingdom of Sand. She’d promised to leave him alone to work while she conducted whatever vital royal business required her presence. Everyone should know better than to disturb him right now. The messenger looked disappointed. Maybe he really was supposed to know who she was. “Your mother sent me to tell you that the NightWing delegation has arrived.” Aaarrrrgh. Not another boring diplomatic meeting.
Tui T. Sutherland (Darkstalker (Wings of Fire: Legends, #1))
Looking at a situation like the Israel-Palestine conflict, Americans are likely to react with puzzlement when they see ever more violent and provocative acts that target innocent civilians. We are tempted to ask: do the terrorists not realize that they will enrage the Israelis, and drive them to new acts of repression? The answer of course is that they know this very well, and this is exactly what they want. From our normal point of view, this seems incomprehensible. If we are doing something wrong, we do not want to invite the police to come in and try and stop us, especially if repression will result in the deaths or imprisonment of many of our followers. In a terrorist war, however, repression is often valuable because it escalates the growing war, and forces people to choose between the government and the terrorists. The terror/repression cycle makes it virtually impossible for anyone to remain a moderate. By increasing polarization within a society, terrorism makes the continuation of the existing order impossible. Once again, let us take the suicide bombing example. After each new incident, Israeli authorities tightened restrictions on Palestinian communities, arrested new suspects, and undertook retaliatory strikes. As the crisis escalated, they occupied or reoccupied Palestinian cities, destroying Palestinian infrastructure. The result, naturally, was massive Palestinian hostility and anger, which made further attacks more likely in the future. The violence made it more difficult for moderate leaders on both sides to negotiate. In the long term, the continuing confrontation makes it more likely that ever more extreme leaders will be chosen on each side, pledged not to negotiate with the enemy. The process of polarization is all the more probably when terrorists deliberately choose targets that they know will cause outrage and revulsion, such as attacks on cherished national symbols, on civilians, and even children. We can also think of this in individual terms. Imagine an ordinary Palestinian Arab who has little interest in politics and who disapproves of terrorist violence. However, after a suicide bombing, he finds that he is subject to all kinds of official repression, as the police and army hold him for long periods at security checkpoints, search his home for weapons, and perhaps arrest or interrogate him as a possible suspect. That process has the effect of making him see himself in more nationalistic (or Islamic) terms, stirs his hostility to the Israeli regime, and gives him a new sympathy for the militant or terrorist cause. The Israeli response to terrorism is also valuable for the terrorists in global publicity terms, since the international media attack Israel for its repression of civilians. Hamas military commander Salah Sh’hadeh, quoted earlier, was killed in an Israeli raid on Gaza in 2002, an act which by any normal standards of warfare would represent a major Israeli victory. In this case though, the killing provoked ferocious criticism of Israel by the U.S. and western Europe, and made Israel’s diplomatic situation much more difficult. In short, a terrorist attack itself may or may not attract widespread publicity, but the official response to it very likely will. In saying this, I am not suggesting that governments should not respond to terrorism, or that retaliation is in any sense morally comparable to the original attacks. Many historical examples show that terrorism can be uprooted and defeated, and military action is often an essential part of the official response. But terrorism operates on a logic quite different from that of most conventional politics and law enforcement, and concepts like defeat and victory must be understood quite differently from in a regular war.
Philip Jenkins (Images of Terror: What We Can and Can't Know about Terrorism (Social Problems and Social Issues))
You cannot imagine, to give you another example, that you may have, one day, a prime minister (it would go against my modesty to breathe his name) who, one day, after announcing in Parliament, in a cool, impassive voice, that, as the result of a number of carefully thought out diplomatic manoeuvres he has refrained from discussing before (for he is not a man of many words), he has succeeded in annexing Britain as an ordinary colony of Hungary, and that he is taking this opportunity to apprise the House of the fact; - Well, as I say, after explaining this in a cool and impassive tone, ignoring the shouting, jubilant Members who want to carry him round on their shoulders, suddenly he takes up a fencing posture and, right there, on the premier's rostrum, employing a formidable, hitherto unknown jujitsu hold, floors the Australian world wrestling champion whom the British opposition treacherously hid under the rostrum in order to assassinate the greatest European.
Frigyes Karinthy (Please Sir!)
Like Barry before him, Diop complained that Chinese projects were negotiated with a total lack of transparency. “If we are paying for big projects we want them to include real transfer of technology and of expertise, but the Chinese bring all their own workers, and the few Guineans are reduced to the role of task boys. In one case we had here, a Chinese company was hired to build a bridge and they did most of their work at night, and they wouldn’t let anyone onto their site. Between the groundbreaking and inauguration ceremonies, they give out no information at all, nothing.” Diop said that his group and others in the civil society coalition had repeatedly tried to speak with Chinese contractors and Chinese diplomats to impress upon them the need to reconsider their approach to things in Guinea, but had been either patronized or turned away. “You go to see them and they say go see your minister, or go see your president, he’s the one who approved these arrangements.” I heard very similar language from disgruntled civil society figures virtually everywhere I traveled.
Howard W. French (China's Second Continent: How a Million Migrants Are Building a New Empire in Africa)
Sometimes Frankl’s ideas are inspirational, as when he explains how dying patients and quadriplegics come to terms with their fate. Others are aspirational, as when he asserts that a person finds meaning by “striving and struggling for a worthwhile goal, a freely chosen task.” He shows how existential frustration provoked and motivated an unhappy diplomat to seek a new, more satisfying career. Frankl also uses moral exhortation, however, to call attention to “the gap between what one is and what one should become” and the idea that “man is responsible and must actualize the potential meaning of his life.” He sees freedom and responsibility as two sides of the same coin. When he spoke to American audiences, Frankl was fond of saying, “I recommend that the Statue of Liberty on the East Coast be supplemented by a Statue of Responsibility on the West Coast.” To achieve personal meaning, he says, one must transcend subjective pleasures by doing something that “points, and is directed, to something, or someone, other than oneself … by giving himself to a cause to serve or another person to love.
Viktor E. Frankl (Man's Search for Meaning)
They’re all okay, then?” I grin like an idiot. What is wrong with me? She rises from her chair, fluid and vaguely shimmering. Her grace is legendary. I’m agile and strong, but I’d rather move like sunbeams on water, like Selena. “In good health and arguing incessantly with Desma and Aetos. Those two are under the impression the Sintans abducted you.” She’s asking a question. I owe her an answer. “They did. Sort of.” Her sculpted lips purse. “Help me understand a ‘sort of’ abduction,” Selena says, pouring me a cup of water. Well, it sounds stupid when you say it like that. My throat is parched, so I drink before answering. “He’s Beta Sinta. He said he’d have you all arrested if I didn’t come.” “And you believed him?” It’s a loaded question coming from Selena. I nod. After nearly a month with him, I also know he would have done it because he felt he had to, not because he wanted to. “He needs a powerful Magoi to help him and his precious Alpha sister, Egeria.” Egeria is no Alpha. She sounds more like a buttercup. Beta Sinta on the other hand, he’s Alpha material. Fierce on the battlefield, bloody, focused, ruthless…fair? “Plus, he had a magic rope.” Selena laughs, and the sound is like wind chimes on a spring breeze. “You? Caught by a magic rope?” I flush. “Don’t remind me.” She clears her throat, taming more laughter, and asks, “Will you help him?” Selena may not know who I am, but I’m certain she knows what I am—the Kingmaker—even if we’ve never discussed it. “My abilities can be valuable in diplomatic situations,” I say carefully. “He came here to save you. He looked like he cared.” I shrug, glancing down. “I’m a weapon he doesn’t want to lose.” “I think there’s more.” My eyes snap back up. “Don’t infer something that isn’t there. We’re both monsters.” Her dark-blue gaze flicks over me, unnerving. “Monsters still mate.” I choke on my own spit and then cough. A faint smile curves her lips. “Why didn’t you just escape?” “The rope.” That stupid, infuriating enchanted rope that led me to make a binding vow to stay with Beta Sinta until his—or my, if it comes first—dying day. She looks incredulous. “You couldn’t find a way out?” “It was a bloody good rope!
Amanda Bouchet (A Promise of Fire (Kingmaker Chronicles, #1))
God created people, alright? Even if you don’t believe in God, just assume that God created people. Alright. And then the people created a bunch of stuff. Mostly, the stuff was crap. And God was all like, “Wait, what are you doing with all that crap?” And the people immediately got all defensive, like “What? Nothing. It’s our stuff. Why do you care?” And God was trying to be diplomatic and pointed and said, “Alright, but where are you going with that thing? It doesn’t look safe.” And the people rolled their eyes and said, “We’re going out. Who are you, the cops?” And God was all, “I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to, but are you really? That doesn’t look like such a good idea.” And the people were all, “Stop being so overprotective, we’re not children. You created us like fifteen minutes ago.” And God was all, “Fine. Fine. Alright. Alright.” And then the people took all their stuff, mostly crap into the world. And the world, a lot of bad stuff happened to it to be honest. And then God mumbled, “Told you.” But did the people then stop and say, “Oops. Our bad.” No. The people immediately turned to God and looked incredibly upset and cried, “Why didn’t you stop us? You could have stopped us. Now this is your fault!” Get it? Because that’s our nature, us humans.
Fredrik Backman
[T]hat afternoon, Sergei Lavrov called me for the second time during the crisis. [...] “We have three demands,” he said. “What are they?” I asked. “The first two are that the Georgians sign the no-use-of-force pledge and that their troops return to barracks,” he told me. “Done,” I answered. [...] But then Sergei said, “The other demand is just between us. Misha Saakashvili has to go.” I couldn’t believe my ears and I reacted out of instinct, not analysis. “Sergei, the secretary of state of the United States does not have a conversation with the Russian foreign minister about overthrowing a democratically elected president,” I said. “The third condition has just become public because I’m going to call everyone I can and tell them that Russia is demanding the overthrow of the Georgian president.” “I said it was between us,” he repeated. “No, it’s not between us. Everyone is going to know.” The conversation ended. I called Steve Hadley to tell him about the Russian demand. Then I called the British, the French, and several others. That afternoon the UN Security Council was meeting. I asked our representative to inform the Council as well. Lavrov was furious, saying that he’d never had a colleague divulge the contents of a diplomatic conversation. I felt I had no choice. If the Georgians wanted to punish Saakashvili for the war, they would have a chance to do it through their own constitutional processes. But the Russians had no right to insist on his removal. The whole thing had an air of the Soviet period, when Moscow had controlled the fate of leaders throughout Eastern Europe. I was certainly not going to be party to a return to those days [688].
Condoleezza Rice (No Higher Honor: A Memoir of My Years in Washington)
Stefan wasn’t sure if it had been watching them and realizing how deep Adrian and Madeleine’s attachment ran, or if it was the fact he was already half in love with Adrian, but he found himself talking before he could stop himself. “I know we’ve only known each other for a year or so, so it’s not really my place to offer my opinions, and I have no concept of what it’s like to be a Royal—the expectations, everything involved,” he started, and Adrian looked up at him. “But my parents were Diplomats, and I did learn a few things from them about how to get what you want.” “Yes?” Adrian asked guardedly. “I’ve been to many courts, and seen many Lord’s daughters. None of them are like Madeleine. No, wait, I’m not insulting her,” he added quickly as Adrian opened his mouth to speak. “What I’m saying is, those girls are being groomed for the traditional roles your father intimated she was to take when she’s older. Now you find out what she really wants—at least at nine years old—to be a Healer and to marry who she wants to. She wants the independence she sees we have.” “Brion’s marriage was arranged when he was thirteen,” Adrian told him. “He seems happy enough, and so does Gwyne, for that matter, but she’d been preparing to be his wife since she was—since she was younger than Maddy.” “But the rest of you haven’t been,” Stefan pointed out, and Adrian nodded in agreement. “One of the basic ideas I grew up with was compromise, giving up just enough to make both sides happy. What if there was no compromise with your sister? If she became so unmarriageable, such an unlikely prospect as a complacent wife, that no one wanted to marry her?” he paused to let his words sink in.
Wendy Clements
When everyone is seated, Galen uses a pot holder to remove the lid from the huge speckled pan in the center of the table. And I almost upchuck. Fish. Crabs. And...is that squid hair? Before I can think of a polite version of the truth-I'd rather eat my own pinky finger than seafood-Galen plops the biggest piece of fish on my plate, then scoops a mixture of crabmeat and scallops on top of it. As the steam wafts its way to my nose, my chances of staying polite dwindle. The only think I can think of is to make it look like I'm hiccupping instead of gagging. What did I smell earlier that almost had me salivating? It couldn't have been this. I fork the fillet and twist, but it feels like twisting my own gut. Mush it, dice it, mix it all up. No matter what I do, how it looks, I can't bring it near my mouth. A promise is a promise, dream or no dream. Even if real fish didn't save me in Granny's pond, the fake ones my imagination conjured up sure comforted me until help arrived. And now I'm expected to eat their cousins? No can do. I set the fork down and sip some water. I sense Galen is watching. Out of my peripheral, I see the others shoveling the chum into their faces. But not Galen. He sits still, head tilted, waiting for me to take a bite first. Of all the times to be a gentleman! What happened to the guy who sprawled me over his lap like a three-year-old just a few minutes ago? Still, I can't do it. And they don't even have a dog for me to feed under the table, which used to be my go-to plan at Chloe's grandmother's house. One time Chloe even started a food fight to get me out of it. I glance around the table, but Rayna's the only person I'd aim this slop at. Plus, I'd risk getting the stuff on me, which is almost as bad as in me. Galen nudges me with his elbow. "Aren't you hungry? You're not feeling bad again, are you?" This gets the others' attention. The commotion of eating stops. Everyone stares. Rayna, irritated that her gluttony has been interrupted. Toraf smirking like I've done something funny. Galen's mom wearing the same concerned look he is. Can I lie? Should I lie? What if I'm invited over again, and they fix seafood because I lied about it just this once? Telling Galen my head hurts doesn't get me out of future seafood buffets. And telling him I'm not hungry would be pointless since my stomach keeps gurgling like an emptying drain. No, I can't lie. Not if I ever want to come back here. Which I do. I sigh and set the fork down. "I hate seafood," I tell him. Toraf's sudden cough startles me. The sound of him choking reminds me of a cat struggling with a hair ball. I train my eyes on Galen, who has stiffened to a near statue. Jeez, is this all his mom knows how to make? Or have I just shunned the Forza family's prize-winning recipe for grouper? "You...you mean you don't like this kind of fish, Emma?" Galen says diplomatically. I desperately want to nod, to say, "Yes, that's it, not this kind of fish"-but that doesn't get me out of eating the crabmeat-and-scallop mountain on my plate. I shake my head. "No. Not just this kind of fish. I hate it all. I can't eat any of it. Can hardly stand to smell it." Way to go for the jugular there, stupid! Couldn't I just say I don't care for it? Did I have to say I hate it? Hate even the smell of it? And why am I blushing? It's not a crime to gag on seafood. And for God's sakes, I won't eat anything that still has its eyeballs.
Anna Banks (Of Poseidon (The Syrena Legacy, #1))
One of Castro’s first acts as Cuba’s Prime Minister was to go on a diplomatic tour that started on April 15, 1959. His first stop was the United States, where he met with Vice President Nixon, after having been snubbed by President Eisenhower, who thought it more important to go golfing than to encourage friendly relations with a neighboring country. It seemed that the U.S. Administration did not take the new Cuban Prime Minister seriously after he showed up dressed in revolutionary garb. Delegating his Vice President to meet the new Cuban leader was an obvious rebuff. However, what was worse was that an instant dislike developed between the two men, when Fidel Castro met Vice President Richard Milhous Nixon. This dislike was amplified when Nixon openly badgered Castro with anti-communistic rhetoric. Once again, Castro explained that he was not a Communist and that he was with the West in the Cold War. However, during this period following the McCarthy era, Nixon was not listening. During Castro’s tour to the United States, Canada and Latin America, everyone in Cuba listened intently to what he had to say. Fidel’s speeches, that were shown on Cuban television, were troubling to Raúl and he feared that his brother was deviating from Cuba’s path towards communism. Becoming concerned by Fidel’s candid remarks, Raúl conferred with his close friend “Che” Guevara, and finally called Fidel about how he was being perceived in Cuba. Following this conversation, Raúl flew to Texas where he met with his brother Fidel in Houston. Raúl informed him that the Cuban press saw his diplomacy as a concession to the United States. The two brothers argued openly at the airport and again later at the posh Houston Shamrock Hotel, where they stayed. With the pressure on Fidel to embrace Communism he reluctantly agreed…. In time he whole heartily accepted Communism as the philosophy for the Cuban Government.
Hank Bracker
I have been in many dugouts, Ludwig,” he goes on. “And we were all young men who sat there around one miserable slush lamp, waiting, while the barrage raged overhead like an earthquake. We were none of your inexperienced recruits, either; we knew well enough what we were waiting for and we knew what would come. —But there was more in those faces down in the gloom there than mere calm, more than good humour, more than just readiness to die. There was the will to another future in those hard, set faces; and it was there when they charged, and still there when they died. —We had less to say for ourselves year by year, we shed many things, but that one thing still remained. And now, Ludwig, where is it now? Can’t you see how it is perishing in all this pig’s wash of order, duty, women, routine, punctuality and the rest of it that here they call life? —No, Ludwig, we lived then! And you tell me a thousand times that you hate war, yet I still say, we lived then. We lived, because we were together, and because something burned in us that was more than this whole muck heap here!” He is breathing hard. “It must have been for something, Ludwig! When I first heard there was revolution, for one brief moment I thought: Now the time will be redeemed—now the flood will pour back, tearing down the old things, digging new banks for itself—and, by God, I would have been in it! But the flood broke up into a thousand runnels; the revolution became a mere scramble for jobs, for big jobs and little jobs. It has trickled away, it has been dammed up, it has been drained off into business, into family, and party. —But that will not do me. I’m going where comradeship is still to be found.” Ludwig stands up. His brow is flaming, his eyes blaze. He looks Rahe in the face. “And why is it, Georg? Why is it? Because we were duped, I tell you, duped as even yet we hardly realize; because we were misused, hideously misused. They told us it was for the Fatherland, and meant the schemes of annexation of a greedy industry. —They told us it was for Honour, and meant the quarrels and the will to power of a handful of ambitious diplomats and princes. —They told us it was for the Nation, and meant the need for activity on the part of out-of-work generals!” He takes Rahe by the shoulders and shakes him. “Can’t you see? They stuffed out the word Patriotism with all the twaddle of their fine phrases, with their desire for glory, their will to power, their false romanticism, their stupidity, their greed of business, and then paraded it before us as a shining ideal! And we thought they were sounding a bugle summoning us to a new, a more strenuous, a larger life. Can’t you see, man? But we were making war against ourselves without knowing it! Every shot that struck home, struck one of us! Can’t you see? Then listen and I will bawl it into your ears. The youth of the world rose up in every land, believing that it was fighting for freedom! And in every land they were duped and misused; in every land they have been shot down, they have exterminated each other! Don’t you see now? —There is only one fight, the fight against the lie, the half-truth, compromise, against the old order. But we let ourselves be taken in by their phrases; and instead of fighting against them, we fought for them. We thought it was for the Future. It was against the Future. Our future is dead; for the youth is dead that carried it. We are merely the survivors, the ruins. But the other is alive still—the fat, the full, the well content, that lives on, fatter and fuller, more contented than ever! And why? Because the dissatisfied, the eager, the storm troops have died for it. But think of it! A generation annihilated! A generation of hope, of faith, of will, strength, ability, so hypnotised that they have shot down one another, though over the whole world they all had the same purpose!” His
Erich Maria Remarque (The Road Back)
Over a three-month period in 1995, Holbrooke alternately cajoled and harangued the parties to the conflict. For one month, he all but imprisoned them at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in Dayton, Ohio—a stage where he could precisely direct the diplomatic theater. At the negotiations’ opening dinner, he seated Miloševic´ under a B-2 bomber—literally in the shadow of Western might. At a low point in the negotiations, he announced that they were over, and had luggage placed outside the Americans’ doors. Miloševic´ saw the bags and asked Holbrooke to extend the talks. The showmanship worked—the parties, several of them mortal enemies, signed the Dayton Agreement. It was an imperfect document. It ceded almost half of Bosnia to Miloševic´ and the Serbian aggressors, essentially rewarding their atrocities. And some felt leaving Miloševicć in power made the agreement untenable. A few years later, he continued his aggressions in Kosovo and finally provoked NATO airstrikes and his removal from power, to face trial at The Hague. The night before the strikes, Miloševic´ had a final conversation with Holbrooke. “Don’t you have anything more to say to me?” he pleaded. To which Holbrooke replied: “Hasta la vista, baby.” (Being menaced by a tired Schwarzenegger catchphrase was not the greatest indignity Miloševic´ faced that week.) But the agreement succeeded in ending three and a half years of bloody war. In a sense, Holbrooke had been preparing for it since his days witnessing the Paris talks with the Vietnamese fall apart, and he worked hard to avoid repeating the same mistakes. Crucial to the success of the talks was his broad grant of power from Washington, free of micromanagement and insulated from domestic political whims. And with NATO strikes authorized, military force was at the ready to back up his diplomacy—not the other way around. Those were elements he would grasp at, and fail to put in place, in his next and final mission.
Ronan Farrow (War on Peace: The End of Diplomacy and the Decline of American Influence)
Like A Rolling Stone" Once upon a time you dressed so fine You threw the bums a dime in your prime, didn't you? People'd call, say, "Beware doll, you're bound to fall" You thought they were all kiddin' you You used to laugh about Everybody that was hangin' out Now you don't talk so loud Now you don't seem so proud About having to be scrounging for your next meal How does it feel? How does it feel To be without a home Like a complete unknown Like a rolling stone? You've gone to the finest school all right, Miss Lonely But you know you only used to get juiced in it And nobody's ever taught you how to live out on the street And now you're gonna have to get used to it You said you'd never compromise With the mystery tramp, but now you realize He's not selling any alibis As you stare into the vacuum of his eyes And say do you want to make a deal? How does it feel? How does it feel To be on your own With no direction home A complete unknown Like a rolling stone? You never turned around to see the frowns on the jugglers and the clowns When they all did tricks for you You never understood that it ain't no good You shouldn't let other people get your kicks for you You used to ride on the chrome horse with your diplomat Who carried on his shoulder a Siamese cat Ain't it hard when you discover that He really wasn't where it's at After he took from you everything he could steal How does it feel? How does it feel To be on your own With no direction home Like a complete unknown Like a rolling stone? Princess on the steeple and all the pretty people They're all drinkin', thinkin' that they got it made Exchanging all precious gifts But you'd better take your diamond ring, you'd better pawn it babe You used to be so amused At Napoleon in rags and the language that he used Go to him now, he calls you, you can't refuse When you ain't got nothing, you got nothing to lose You're invisible now, you got no secrets to conceal How does it feel How does it feel To be on your own With no direction home Like a complete unknown Like a rolling stone? Bob Dylan, Highway 61 Revisited (1965)
Bob Dylan (Highway 61 Revisited)
If we do not stop these mar-makers not,...it will soon be too late. We are the only nation that can halt this crusade. It might be too late in America, but it isn't too late here. Without British support the whole scheme would collapse. For that reason the future of all nations depends upon the policy which is decided in this House. More than that, the final position of Britain in the world is being decided. If we support these anti-Communist crusades through the world as we have supported it in Greece, then our good name and existence will be threatened by the hatred of all free-thinking men. We cannot suppress all desire in Europe and Asia for social change by branding it communism from Russia and persecuting its supporters. Social change doesn't have to come from Russia, whatever the Foreign Office or the Americans say. It is a product of the miserable conditions under which the majority of the earth's population exist. There are fighters for social change in every land, here as well as anywhere.... We Socialists are among them. That is the reason for our predominance in the House to-day. The very men that we try to suppress in other countries are asking for far less liberty than we enjoy here, far less social change than we Socialists hope to initiate in Great Britain. Are we going to betray these men by labelling them Communists and crushing them wherever we find them until we have launched ourselves at Russia herself in a war that will wipe this island off the face of the earth? The American imperialists say that this is the American Century. ARe we to sacrifice ourselves for that great ideal, or are we to stand beside the people of Europe and Asia and other lands who seek independence, economic stability, self-determination, and the right to conduct their own affairs? Are we going to partake in an anti-Red campaign when we ourselves are Reds? ...... Some among us might think that there is political expediency in following this anti-Russian crusade without really getting enmeshed in it, creating a Third Force in Europe of their friends, a balancing force for power politics. In that you have the real policy of our Government to-day. But how can we avoid final involvement? Our American vanguard will stop at nothing. They hold their atom bomb aloft with nervous fingers. It has become their talisman and their faith. It is their new weapon of anti-Communism, a more efficient Belsen and Maidenek. Its first usage was morally anti-Russian. It was used to end Japan quickly so that Russia would play no part in the final settlement with that country. No doubt they would have used it on Russia already if they could be certain that Russian did not have an equal or better atomic weapon. That terrible uncertainty goads them into fiercer political and economic activity against the world's grim defenders of great liberties. In that you have the heart of this American imperial desperation. They cannot defeat the people of Europe and Asia with the atomic bomb alone. They cannot win unless we lend them our name and our support and our political cunning. To-day they have British support, in policy as well as in international councils where the decisions of peace and security are being made. With our support America is undermining every international conference with its anti-Russian politics.
James Aldridge (The Diplomat)
You are claiming that the Soviet authorities began and influenced the existence of the Democratic Party [in Iran]. That is the basis of all your statements. The simplest way to discredit your absurd claim si to tell you about Iran, of which you are apparently ignorant. The people of Iran are oppressed, poverty-stricken, and miserable with hunger and disease. Their death rate is among the highest in the world, and their infant mortality rate threatens Iran with complete extinction. They are ruled without choice by feudalistic landowners, ruthless Khans, and venal industrialists. The peasants are slaves and the workers are paid a few pennies for a twelve hour day--not enough to keep their families in food. I can quote you all the figures you like to support these statements, quote them if necessary from British sources. I can also quote you the figures of wealth which is taken out of Iran yearly by the Anglo-Iranian Oil Company, of which the British Governemtn is the largest shareholder. 200 million pounds sterling have been taken out of Iran by your Oil company: a hundred times the total amount of Iran's national income and ten thousand times the total national income of the working people of Iran. By such natural resources as oil, Iran is by nature one of the wealthiest countries on earth. That wealth goes to Britain, while Iran remains poverty-ridden and without economic stability at all. It has no wage policies, no real trade unions, few hospitals, no sanitation and drainage, no irrigation, no proper housing, and no adequate road system. Its people have no rights before the law; their franchise in non-existent, and their parliamentary rights are destroyed by the corrupt method of election and political choice. The Iranian people suffer the terrors of a police regime, and they are prey to the manipulations of the grain speculators and the money operators. The racial minorities suffer discrimination and intolerance, and religious minorities are persecuted for political ends. Banditry threatens the mountain districts, and British arms have been used to support one tribe against another. I could go on indefinitely, painting you a picture of misery and starvation and imprisonment and subjection which must shame any human being capable of hearing it. Yet you say that the existence of a Democratic Party in Iran has been created by the Soviet authorities. You underestimate the Iranian people, Lord Essex! The Democratic Party has arisen out of all this misery and subjection as a force against corruption and oppression. Until now the Iranian people have been unable to create a political party because the police system prevented by terror and assassination. Any attempt to organize the workers and peasants was quickly halted by the execution of party leaders and the vast imprisonment of its followers. The Iranian people, however, have a long record of struggle and persistence, and they do not have to be told by the Soviet Union where their interests lie. They are not stupid and they are not utterly destroyed. They still posses the will to organize a democratic body and follow it into paths of Government. The Soviet Union has simply made sure that the police assassins did not interfere.... To talk of our part in 'creating' the democratic movement is an insult to the people and a sign of ignorance. We do not underestimate the Iranian people, and as far as we are concerned the Democratic Party...belongs to the people. It is their creation and their right, and it cannot be broken by wild charges which accuse the Soviet Union of its birth. We did not create it, and we have not interfered in the affairs of Iran. On the contrary, it is the British Government which has interfered continuously and viciously in Iran's affairs.
James Aldridge (The Diplomat)
Gregory is a good boy, though all the Latin he has learned, all the sonorous periods of the great authors, have rolled through his head and out again, like stones. Still, you think of Thomas More’s boy: offspring of a scholar all Europe admired, and poor young John can barely stumble through his Pater Noster. Gregory is a fine archer, a fine horseman, a shining star in the tilt yard, and his manners cannot be faulted. He speaks reverently to his superiors, not scuffling his feet or standing on one leg, and he is mild and polite with those below him. He knows how to bow to foreign diplomats in the manner of their own countries, sits at table without fidgeting or feeding spaniels, can neatly carve and joint any fowl if requested to serve his elders. He doesn’t slouch around with his jacket off one shoulder, or look in windows to admire himself, or stare around in church, or interrupt old men, or finish their stories for them. If anyone sneezes, he says, ‘Christ help you!
Hilary Mantel (Bring Up the Bodies (Thomas Cromwell, #2))
The Honourable Lady confuses the American people with American policy.... It is the very generosity of the American people which makes it possible for their policy-makers to confuse the trick them into believing that American is the God-father of the world. That is nonsense, and the American people should know it. If they don't get to know it, then the continuation of their present policy will make them the most despised people on earth. I know the Americans are generous. I know American policy is 'generous'. But there you have two different things. What the policy-makers expect in return for their dollar bounty is political co-operation against Russia and any other nation they like to call Red! I would remind the Honourable Lady that it is their anti-Red benevolence that is universal. In China, American capital is still spending more to create the military dictatorship of Chiang Kai-Shek than it did to assist China against Japan. With so many other nations in Europe and Asia broken by the war, American assistance with money and machinery almost means life itself. For national existence however, American policy has a price. It offers unconditional money, machinery, and arms to any nation that will denounce Russian and Communism and pronounce American as the God of all free nations. Even in defeated Italy, Germany, and Japan, American policy supports any sect that is anti-Red and anti-Russian. There is no end to this white American morality, it has its wide wide arms across the globe, its long fingers in every nation, and its loud voice in every ear,... Why talk about Russia!... If we must talk here about interference by one nation in another's affairs, let us talk of this American interference in every nation's affairs. Is there a nation on the face of the earth to-day except Russian and her so-called satellites which can hold up its head and say it is independent of the American dollar? We are all on our knees, and we won't admit it. Our American masters do not need arms and occupation; capital is enough. Capital is enough to strangle the earth if only it has the support of its victims. We are asked to support it—to bring others to their knees: France, Jugo-slavia, Bulgaria, Czechoslovakia, Poland, all of Eastern Europe, Greece, Turkey and Iran. The world over, we are asked to replace so-called Communism with the dollar. That dollar means governorship by those who will sell themselves and their nation for a smell of wealth and a grip of power. Such men are international. American has no monopoly on evil and stupid men. American simply has the wealth for bigger evil. The rest of us follow her according to our own evil and our own stupidity. British policy to-day is as bad as America's despite our Socialist Government.
James Aldridge (The Diplomat)
A man may have the right to criticize the Government, but I'm hanged if he has a right to brazenly use his free speech to attack our way of life. More and more we see men in science and profession and academy abusing their privileges of expression by crying that their real liberties are threatened by patriotism. Is patriotism above these men? Do they have a right to express their views, to carry on their work, to be free men unless they are patriotic to our society? I say no sir! Loyalty is one of the prerogatives of freedom
James Aldridge (The Diplomat)
I'd like you to see that we are interfering too drastically. WE can't just assume so completely that Azerbaijan is in the hands of dangerous men and vicious Bolsheviks. I suppose it's all in the way you see Iran. I'd like you to see that Iranians are just as serious about their politics as we are: perhaps more so. The Iranian is a vigorous individual with definite ideas about the right and wrong done to him. It's easy for these journalists to laugh at the idea of political spontaneity among the Iranians because they look on these people as dirty, stupid, childlike natives who stare open-mouthed while the wonders of the west are offered to them. …... They are not like that at all. They want proper government, the same as anybody else. They have certainly tried hard enough to get it, but they haven't had a chance. We have done a great deal to prevent them getting real government. It may shock you, but we have always wanted corrupt administrations. Since the Reuter concessions sixty years ago we have begaved like American gangsters using threats, money, and even war to extort privileges and concessions which amounted to owning the country. At one time we had complete control over the administration, over the entire wealth of the land, the banks, and the army. It's rather silly to say the Iranians are un-political when you realize how quickly we had to hand back those concessions. This country rose to a man against us. We gave in hastily, but we managed to cling desperately to our oil concessions. [MacGregor] I think you are worrying yourself unduly [Essex]. We can't be too bad an influence. We may not be reformers ourselves... but we do not fight people who are really trying to improve the country. You must admit that we did not resist the last Shah, and he certainly reformed the place as best as it could be reformed. [MacGregor] It has become a habit to pass all compliments to Reza Shah,...even though we dethroned him. All reforms and modernizations are supposed to be his idea. Yet he simply took over the power of a popular revolution which we resisted at the time. He took power as a despot and he was little better than his predecessors. These people are getting fed up with despots. They obviously want to achieve some kind of better government, particularly in Azerbaijan.… That revolt in Azerbaijan doesn't have to be a Russian idea. It is really the continuation of five or six revolutions, all of them trying to get rid of corrupt governments. This time they seen to be succeeding. Our idea is to stop it.... Every level of government in Iran is corrupt from top to bottom, including the court, the police, and the parliament. Government is organized corruption. The ministers prey on the population like buzzards; they arragne taxes, laws, finances, famines; everything to the purpose of making money. The last Shah might have wiped out some of it; but that meant he became the biggest grafter of them all. He controlled the little fellows, and took the best of everything for himself. By the end of his rule he owned about a fifth of this entire country. He is not the hero we think he is, and his police regime was as brutal as anything the Germans had. Though we co-operated with him, he was a little tougher than the others and he always held out for more. Once, he threatened to wipe out our oil concession but we brought him off. He could always be bought off, like all the other grafters.
James Aldridge (The Diplomat)
Is there more to the Fatima secret not yet revealed? Well, before he later revealed the content of the 3rd Secret of Fatima in 2000, John Paul II spoke to a select group of German Catholics at Fulda during his 1980 visit to Germany. Here is an excerpt from his words: The Holy Father was asked, “What about the Third Secret of Fatima? Should it not have already been published by 1960?” Pope John Paul II replied: “Given the seriousness of the contents, my predecessors in the Petrine office diplomatically preferred to postpone publication so as not to encourage the world power of Communism to make certain moves. On the other hand, it should be sufficient for all Christians to know this: if there is a message in which it is written that the oceans will flood whole areas of the earth, and that from one moment to the next millions of people will perish, truly the publication of such a message is no longer something to be so much desired.” At this point the Pope grasped a Rosary and said: “Here is the remedy against this evil. Pray, pray, and ask for nothing more. Leave everything else to the Mother of God.” The Holy Father was then asked: “What is going to happen to the Church?” He answered: “We must prepare ourselves to suffer great trials before long, such as will demand of us a disposition to give up even life, and a total dedication to Christ and for Christ. With your and my prayer it is possible to mitigate this tribulation, but it is no longer possible to avert it, because only thus can the Church be effectively renewed. How many times has the renewal of the Church sprung from blood! This time, too, it will not be otherwise. We must be strong and prepared, and trust in Christ and His Mother, and be very, very assiduous in praying the Rosary.” In his book, The Last Secret of Fatima, Cardinal Bertone, (now former) Vatican Secretary of State, acknowledged that John Paul II did in fact say these words (p. 48). What clarity, for those who can see!
Kelly Bowring (The Signs of the Times, the New Ark, and the Coming Kingdom of the Divine Will)
What the Iranians are looking for is a narrative of victory,” one American diplomat said last week, “a way to say the West backed down, and admitted Iran will be able to produce its own nuclear fuel one day, in unlimited quantity.” What Congress needs, the diplomat said, “is a narrative that Iran was forced to dismantle what it has.
Meanwhile, the peculiar life of Athanarel continued. We did not have a king, yet the government was somehow carried forward, and foreign diplomats attended the constant round of social events, and they all seemed content with things as they were. Not so the more serious of the courtiers, but as yet the questions everyone most wanted to ask--“When will we have a king? Why does he wait?”--were as yet discussed only in quiet corners of informal parties and never by those most closely concerned. The weather curtailed outside activities. For now the races and picnics were set aside for inside diversions: readings, music, dancing, parties, chocolate, and talk. I think four new dances were introduced during that time, but what I really enjoyed was the resumption of sword work. Parties to pursue the martial arts were organized, and fencing tourneys replaced racing for those who liked competition. I competed only for fun, and no one bet on me, not even Savona, because, despite my enthusiasm, I wasn’t very good. Neither was Bran, though he shared my enthusiasm. The others who favored the blade had been well-trained from childhood, and our lack showed. But this did not stop either of us from trying. One of the topics of conversation was my party, which was perhaps the more anticipated because people kept inside perforce had more time to spend on their costumes. My own involvement with the preparations had escalated accordingly, about which I’ll have something to say anon. From Flauvic, of course, nothing was seen, nor did he entertain--but after enough days had passed that I had quite given up on him, I received a witty note, gracefully written by his own hand, stating that he would attend my party. And so, on the surface, all was serene enough. Tamara remained cool but friendly, and Nee told me over chocolate one morning when Elenet was not there that Tamara never mentioned me but in praise. Trishe held her weekly breakfast parties in her rooms at Khialem House; Deric and Geral continued to flirt with me; Savona continued his extravagant compliments; I was often in company with Shevraeth now, and we both smiled and conversed, but always, it seemed, with other people.
Sherwood Smith (Court Duel (Crown & Court, #2))
I was still brooding over this question when I heard a polite tap outside the tapestry, and a moment later, there was the equally quiet impact of a boot heel on the new tile floor, then another. A weird feeling prickled down my spine, and I twisted around to face the Marquis of Shevraeth, who stood just inside the room. He raised his hands and said, “I am unarmed.” I realized I was glaring. “I hate people creeping up behind me,” I muttered. He glanced at the twenty paces or so of floor between us, then up at the shelves, the map, the new books. Was he comparing this library with the famed Athanarel one--or the equally (no doubt!) impressive one at his home in Renselaeus? I folded my arms and waited for either satire or condescension. When he spoke, the subject took me by surprise. “You said once that your father burned the Astiar library. Did you ever find out why?” “It was the night we found out that my mother had been killed,” I said reluctantly. The old grief oppressed me, and I fought to keep my thoughts clear. “By the order of Galdran Merindar.” “Do you know why he ordered her murder?” he asked over his shoulder, as he went on perusing the books. I shook my head. “No. There’s no way to find out that I can think of. Even if we discovered those who carried out the deed, they might not know the real reasons.” I added sourly, “Well do I remember how Galdran issued lies to cover his misdeeds: Last year, when he commenced the attack against us, he dared to say that it was we who were breaking the Covenant!” I couldn’t help adding somewhat accusingly, “Did you believe that? Not later, but when the war first started.” “No.” I couldn’t see his face. Only his back, and the long pale hair, and his lightly clasped hands were in view as he surveyed my shelves. This was the first time the two of us had conversed alone, for I had been careful to avoid such meetings during his visit. Not wanting to prolong it, I still felt compelled to amplify. I said, “My mother was the last of the royal Calahanras family. Galdran must have thought her a threat, even though she retired from Court life when she adopted into the Astiar family.” Shevraeth was walking along the shelves now, his hands still behind his back. “Yet Galdran had taken no action against your mother previously.” “No. But she’d never left Tlanth before, not since her marriage. She was on her way to Remalna-city. We only know that it was his own household guards, disguised as brigands, that did the job, because they didn’t quite kill the stablegirl who was riding on the luggage coach and she recognized the horses as Merindar horses.” I tightened my grip on my elbows. “You don’t believe it?” Again he glanced back at me. “Do you know your mother’s errand in the capital?” His voice was calm, quiet, always with that faint drawl as if he chose his words with care. Suddenly my voice sounded too loud, and much too combative, to my ears. Of course that made my face go crimson with heat. “Visiting.” This effectively ended the subject, and I waited for him to leave. He turned around then, studying me reflectively. The length of the room still lay between us. “I had hoped,” he said, “that you would honor me with a few moments’ further discourse.” “About what?” I demanded. “I came here at your brother’s invitation.” He spoke in a conversational tone, as though I’d been pleasant and encouraging. “My reasons for accepting were partly because I wanted an interlude of relative tranquility, and partly for diplomatic reasons.” “Yes, Nimiar told me about your wanting to present a solid front with the infamous Astiars. I understand, and I said I’d go along.” “Please permit me to express my profound gratitude.” He bowed gracefully.
Sherwood Smith (Court Duel (Crown & Court, #2))
Although she has a tendency to be overly impressed by those with academic qualifications, Diana admires people who perform rather than pontificate. Richard Branson, the head of Virgin airlines, Baron Jacob Rothschild, the millionaire banker who restored Spencer House, and her cousin Viscount David Linley who runs a successful furniture and catering business, are high on her list. “She likes the fact that David has been able to break out of the royal mould and do something positive,” says a friend. “She envies too his good fortune in being able to walk down a street without a detective.” For years her low intellectual self-esteem manifested itself in instinctive deference towards the judgments of her husband and senior courtiers. Now that she is clearer herself about her direction, she is prepared to argue about policy in a way that would have been unthinkable several years ago. The results are tangible. Foreign Office diplomats, notoriously hidebound in their perceptions, are beginning to realize her true worth. They were impressed by the way she handled her first solo visit to Pakistan and subsequently discussed trips to Egypt and Iran, the Islamic republic where the Union Jack was routinely burned until a few years ago. This is, as she would say, a “very grown-up” part of her royal life.
Andrew Morton (Diana: Her True Story in Her Own Words)
On February 5, 1951, the State Department transmitted to all posts a “Comprehensive Statement of United States Policy” toward Saudi Arabia. This was a classified paper, not intended to be shared with the public or with the Saudis; it was to be used by American diplomats as guidance for local decisions and for their discussions with Saudi and other Arab leaders. It represented a definitive statement of American policy on, and aspirations for, the Kingdom and the House of Saud. Although it was written more than fifty years ago, in another geopolitical era, most of this paper articulates policies still in place today—a remarkable consistency in policy that has survived multiple wars and upheavals in the Middle East, to say nothing of multiple changes of administration in Washington.
Thomas W. Lippman (Inside The Mirage: America's Fragile Partnership With Saudi Arabia)
Every team needs one person who is willing to speak uncomfortable truths, no matter what,” Aceveda replied. “Most people are, by nature, diplomatic to a fault. What Gerhold and Nisha and perhaps Yuan provide is an unvarnished alternative view, which is very often the correct view, even though it isn’t how the rest of the group sees things. It can come off as cynicism. Without their perspective, groupthink becomes a problem, and things get out of balance. The other, more diplomatic members rely on the spoilsport to voice the things they’re secretly thinking but can’t – or don’t want – to say. As long as they don’t become a morale sink and remain loyal, they’re valuable.
Michael Richan (Mausoleum: Anomaly)
name, but he lives around the corner.’ Mary sighed. ‘He works in a law firm — or a finance brokerage — or something like that—’ she lifted her left hand and moved her wrist in circles ‘—on the next street over. Of course, when you walk past a shelter wearing a Rolex you’re going to be asked if you can spare some change.’ She shook her head. ‘But yes, I know who you mean, and I’ve heard him say those things.’ ‘He mean anything by them you think?’ She studied Roper for a second. ‘Are you asking if I think he could have murdered Ollie?’ Roper stayed quiet. He couldn’t lead her into anything. After a second, he said, ‘I’m not asking anything other than whether you think that he’s worth speaking to.’ Diplomatic he wasn’t. ‘I don’t know. I’ve never spoken to him — only heard his voice, had him described to me.’ Jamie cut in now. ‘Has he ever assaulted any of the people who come here? Any violence, or direct threat?’ ‘Direct threat?’ Roper sucked his teeth. ‘As in, I’m going to drown you versus you should be drowned.’ Mary’s mouth crumped into a wrinkled line. ‘I don’t know that I can really say whether… I… I don’t know is the simple answer. Lots of people take offence to the shelter being here. It wouldn’t be out of the question for someone to act rashly — but him? I don’t know.’ She was being careful not to say anything that would incriminate the possibly innocent man. She turned to Roper, trying to sound casual. There was no need to worry Mary. ‘We’ll get some uniformed officers to canvas the area — ask around to see whether the shelter has had an impact on anyone in particular.’ She smiled at Mary now. ‘But don’t worry, it’s just eliminating the most improbable suspects first, narrowing down the scope of the investigation, you know?’ ‘Am I a suspect?’ Mary asked, stopping
Morgan Greene (Bare Skin (DS Jamie Johansson #1))
I couldn’t take it anymore. “Hey, people. Chat time is over. The girl’s about to pass out on her feet. Thomas is dying. So both of you shut your mouth and help them.” Raith whipped his head around to stare daggers at me. His voice was cold enough to merit the use of a Kelvin scale. “I do not respond well to demands.” I ground my teeth and said, “Both of you shut your mouth and help them. Please.” And they say I can’t be diplomatic.
Jim Butcher (Blood Rites (The Dresden Files, #6))
Diplomats sitting inside their cozy air-conditioned offices most profoundly utter, you must have patience to have peace on earth. To them I say, how dare you preach on peace, you ignorant snobs - tell that to the innocent little kids who are suffering in warzones, without any clue as to whether they'll live to see the next day - while the capitalist circle of the developed world keeps getting richer by getting the shallow masses hooked on nonessential technology, these children of war have one question in their mind - whether starvation will kill them first or explosives. Shame on you - shame on us - who despite having a roof over head and food on the table, have not the slightest bit of concern for these innocent lives forgotten by destiny. There is no time for patience - there is no time for diplomacy - there is no time for policies, legislations and meaningless paperwork. It's enough already. Either stand up and rush to the aid of these war-stricken communities through whichever means possible or keep your mouth shut for the rest of your life.
Abhijit Naskar (Hurricane Humans: Give me accountability, I'll give you peace)
Not unlike Mussolini in his early laissez-faire period with Alberto De Stefani, Hitler named as his first minister of finance the conservative Lutz Graf Schwerin von Krosigk. For a time, the Führer left foreign policy in the hands of professional diplomats (with the aristocratic Constantin von Neurath as foreign minister) and the army in the hands of professional soldiers. But Hitler’s drive to shrink the normative state and expand the prerogative state was much more sustained than Mussolini’s. Total master of his party, Hitler exploited its radical impulses for his own aggrandizement against the old elites and rarely (after the exemplary bloodbath of June 1934) needed to rein it in. Another suggested key to radicalization is the chaotic nature of fascist rule. Contrary to wartime propaganda and to an enduring popular image, Nazi Germany was not a purring, well-oiled machine. Hitler allowed party agencies to compete with more traditional state offices, and he named loyal lieutenants to overlapping jobs that pitted them against each other. The ensuing “feudal” struggles for supremacy within and between party and state shocked those Germans proud of their country’s traditional superbly trained and independent civil service. Fritz-Dietlof Count von der Schulenburg, a young Prussian official initially attracted to Nazism, lamented in 1937 that “the formerly unified State power has been split into a number of separate authorities; Party and professional organizations work in the same areas and overlap with no clear divisions of responsibility.” He feared “the end of a true Civil Service and the emergence of a subservient bureaucracy.” We saw in the previous chapter how the self-indulgently bohemian Hitler spent as little time as possible on the labors of government, at least until the war. He proclaimed his visions and hatreds in speeches and ceremonies, and allowed his ambitious underlings to search for the most radical way to fulfill them in a Darwinian competition for attention and reward. His lieutenants, fully aware of his fanatical views, “worked toward the Führer,” who needed mainly to arbitrate among them. Mussolini, quite unlike Hitler in his commitment to the drudgery of government, refused to delegate and remained suspicious of competent associates—a governing style that produced more inertia than radicalization. War provided fascism’s clearest radicalizing impulse. It would be more accurate to say that war played a circular role in fascist regimes. Early fascist movements were rooted in an exaltation of violence sharpened by World War I, and war making proved essential to the cohesion, discipline, and explosive energy of fascist regimes. Once undertaken, war generated both the need for more extreme measures, and popular acceptance of them. It seems a general rule that war is indispensable for the maintenance of fascist muscle tone (and, in the cases we know, the occasion for its demise). It seems clear that both Hitler and Mussolini deliberately chose war as a necessary step in realizing the full potential of their regimes. They wanted to use war to harden internal society as well as to conquer vital space. Hitler told Goebbels, “the war . . . made possible for us the solution of a whole series of problems that could never have been solved in normal times.
Robert O. Paxton (The Anatomy of Fascism)
Charity stems from compassion and generosity. The proof of this is that it is freely given. Contributions to welfare, on the other hand, are coerced. Everyone understands the difference between what we are made to do and what we choose voluntarily to do. Welfare is a form of obligatory charity to which all taxpayers are forced to contribute. It is fundamentally different from taxes that pay for the common good: roads, soldiers, diplomats, policemen, etc. In effect, our government says to its citizens, “You will give part of your money to poor people or you will go to jail for tax evasion.” Obligatory charity is thus a contradiction—not charity at all. If a beggar forces a citizen, under threat of violence, to hand over his money, this is robbery. If government forces the same citizen, under threat of jail, to give money to beggars, the same transfer is called welfare. As far as the citizen is concerned, the outcome is the same: He has been parted from his property against his will. In real life, obstreperous beggars are less of a threat than government, for they can be avoided or fought. Government cannot be avoided, and it is much more difficult to fight.
Jared Taylor (Paved With Good Intentions: The Failure of Race Relations in Contemporary America)
General Sir William Butler (1838–1910), and I remembered then what he thought about the misty manipulators of events in his time. It was, he wrote, not wild idealists, devious diplomats or ever-ambitious politicians, let alone soldiers in the field, who pulled the wires or inexplicably closed, as it were, the food counters of his day. No, says the dear old boy (and remember, he was writing in the 1830s), in the end we always find it is the distant financier behind the scenes, the man of many millions, the controller of vast enterprises, turning some nebulous proposition into a vital question of the hour, ‘whipping the whole pack together and letting loose the dogs of war’.
Jan Morris (Thinking Again: A Diary)
You're leaving me?" St. Vincent asked, looking perturbed. "For how long?" "For good, actually." As St. Vincent absorbed the information, his pale blue eyes narrowed. "What will you do for money?" Relaxed in the face of his employer's displeasure, Cam shrugged. "I already have more money than anyone could spend in a lifetime." The viscount glanced heavenward. "Anyone who says such a thing obviously doesn't know the right places to shop." He sighed shortly. "So. If I'm to understand correctly, you intend to eschew civilization altogether and live as a savage?" "No, I intend to live as a Roma. There's a difference." "Rohan, you're a wealthy young bachelor with all the advantages of modern life. If you've got ennui, do what every other man of means does." Cam's brows lifted. "And that would be? "Gamble! Drink! Buy a horse! Take a mistress! For God's sake, have a little imagination. Can you think of no better option than to throw it all away and live like a primitive, thereby inconveniencing me in the process? How the devil am I to replace you?" "No one's irreplaceable." "You are. No other man in London can do what you do. You're a walking account book, you've got eyes in the back of your head, you've got the tact of a diplomat, the mind of a banker, the fists of a boxer, and you can put down a fight in a matter of seconds. I'd need to hire at least a half-dozen men to your job." "I don't have the mind of a banker," Cam said indignantly. "After all your investment coups, you can't deny? "That wasn't on purpose!" A scowl spread across Cam's face. "It was my good-luck curse.
Lisa Kleypas (Mine Till Midnight (The Hathaways, #1))
Standing, she turned toward him, dropped into an exaggerated curtsy, and, smiling broadly, said, “Your Grace. I trust I pass inspection?” He chuckled at her use of the ducal address and offered her a hand to lift her from her position. Tilting his head, he answered in a voice rich with humor. “Far be it from me to answer that particular question. I wouldn’t dare risk removing that opinion from the purview of the duchess. You know that.” Lowering his voice to a conspiratorial whisper, he continued, “Suffice to say, my lady, that I believe you are the most beautiful of my offspring.” Alex burst into laughter and leaned up to kiss her father’s cheek. “Well said…ever the diplomat. Although I rather think it shouldn’t be that difficult to be the most beautiful when compared to the hulking brutes you call sons.” “Not diplomacy at all, daughter. You look lovely. And, sadly, very grown up. When did you get so tall?” Alex was just a few inches from her father’s height, and she smiled at the question. “Strong Stafford blood, of course, Father. Are you certain we’re not descended from the Vikings?” “Looking at the four of you, one does wonder. But then there is I, the diminutive duke…pathetically small and not at all Norse.
Sarah MacLean (The Season)
In years to come, people may say that the most powerful weapon in this period of the twenty-first century was not sarin gas or the nuclear bomb, but the smartphone. We
Tom Fletcher (The Naked Diplomat: Understanding Power and Politics in the Digital Age)
Increasingly, it matters less what a prime minister or diplomat says is ‘our policy’ on an issue – it matters what the users of Google, Facebook or Twitter decide that it is. Set-piece
Tom Fletcher (The Naked Diplomat: Understanding Power and Politics in the Digital Age)
Even at ten o’clock in the morning it was going to be full of members of the public. Rich, influential members of the public, many of them foreign, a lot of them with some level of diplomatic immunity. ‘What I’m saying here,’ Seawoll had said, ‘is try to limit the amount of damage you do to none fucking whatsoever.’ I don’t know where I got this reputation for property damage, I really don’t
Ben Aaronovitch (The Hanging Tree (Rivers of London, #6))
Kennedy went on to say, “For we are opposed around the world by a monolithic and ruthless conspiracy that relies primarily on covert means for expanding its sphere of influence—on infiltration instead of invasion, on subversion instead of elections, on intimidation instead of free choice, on guerrillas by night instead of armies by day. It is a system which has conscripted vast human and material resources into the building of a tightly knit, highly efficient machine that combines military, diplomatic, intelligence, economic, scientific and political operations. Its preparations are concealed, not published. Its mistakes are buried, not headlined. Its dissenters are silenced, not praised. No expenditure is questioned, no rumor is printed, no secret is revealed.
Jim Marrs (The Illuminati: The Secret Society That Hijacked the World)
Well past midnight, HRC cast her vote in favor of the amendment, though she was clear about her reservations. When she delivered floor remarks, she said, "Even though the resolution before the Senate is not as strong as I would like in requiring the diplomatic route first... I take the President at his word that he will try hard to pass a United Nations resolution and seek to avoid war, if possible.... A vote for the resolution is not a vote to rush to war; it is a vote that puts awesome responsibility in the hands of our President. And we say to him: Use these powers wisely and as a last resort.
Huma Abedin (Both/And: A Memoir)
The former Polish president also believes that if we keep saying “no” to Turkey and Ukraine, we will be the ones begging them to join in 10 years’ time.
Maciej Olchawa (Mission Ukraine: The 2012-2013 Diplomatic Effort to Secure Ties with Europe)
-Whatever the world would say; however, as a fact, Russia, in the leadership of Vladimir Putin, has given historical lessons and the silent defeat to the United States of America in both ways; the diplomatic and war strategy. After retreating from Afghanistan by the American-made Taliban, including Bin Laden since that and the Iraq war till present, the USA has lost its incredibility in world eyes and failed to build peace, harmony, and equality within small and large states of the world. Now, Donald Trump, even though his political speeches meet hard critical responses, but it seems that he will restore, and achieve the American image of justice and peace for everyone. Otherwise, the failure is the destiny that may collapse the unity within states of it, as in the Soviet Union.
Ehsan Sehgal
Here, Veblen’s iconoclasm showed its range, as he simultaneously exposed modern corporations as hives of swarming parasites, derided marginalism for disingenuously sanitizing these infested sites by rebranding nonproductivity as productivity, and attacked economists for failing to situate themselves historically. On Veblen’s account, the business enterprise was no more immune from historical change than any other economic institution. As the controlling force in modern civilization, the business enterprise too would necessarily undergo “natural decay” and prove “transitory.” Where history was heading next, however, Veblen felt he could not say, because no teleology was steering the evolutionary process as a whole, only (as he had said before) the “discretionary action of the human agents,” whose institutionally shaped choices were still unformed. Nevertheless, limiting himself to the “calculable future”—to what, in light of existing scientific knowledge, seemed probable in the near term—Veblen pointed to two contrasting possibilities, both beyond the ken of productivity theories. One alternative was militarization and war—barbarism redux. According to Veblen, the business enterprise, as its grows, spills over national boundaries and fosters the expansion of a world market in which “the business men of one nation are pitted against those of another and swing“the forces of the state, legislative, diplomatic, and military, against one another in the strategic game of pecuniary advantage.” As this game intensifies, competing nations rush (said Veblen presciently) to amass military hardware that can easily fall under the control of political leaders who embrace aggressive international policies and “warlike aims, achievements, [and] spectacles.” Unchecked, these developments could, he believed, demolish “those cultural features that distinguish modern times from what went before, including a decline of the business enterprise itself.” (In his later writings from the World War I period, Veblen returned to these issues.) The second future possibility was socialism, which interested Veblen (for the time being) not only as an institutional alternative to the business enterprise but also as a way of economic thinking that nullified the productivity theory of distribution. In cycling back to the phenomenon of socialism, which he had bracketed in The Theory of the Leisure Class, Veblen zeroed in on men and women who held industrial occupations, in which he observed a growing dissatisfaction with the bedrock institutions of the modern age. This discontent was socially concentrated, found not so much among laborers who were “mechanical auxiliaries”—manual extensions—“of the machine process“ but “among those industrial classes who are required to comprehend and guide the processes.” These classes consist of “the higher ranks of skilled mechanics and [of people] who stand in an engineering or supervisory ”“relation to the processes.” Carrying out these jobs, with their distinctive task requirements, inculcates “iconoclastic habits of thought,” which draw men and women into trade unions and, as a next step, “into something else, which may be called socialism, for want of a better term.” This phrasing was vague even for Veblen, but he felt hamstrung because “there was little agreement among socialists as to a programme for the future,” at least aside from provisions almost “entirely negative.
Charles Camic (Veblen: The Making of an Economist Who Unmade Economics)
A diplomat, according to Alex Dreier, is “anyone who thinks twice before saying nothing.
Peter Mayle (Toujours Provence (Provence, #2))
I’m far from a pacifist. Although intellectually I bow to diplomats and diplomacy, I’m built and wired to grab the bull by the horns. A man of action, you might say. But I’m also disciplined. Logic driven. And I have a deep affinity for fairness. So when I see injustice occurring, I tend to wade in.
Tim Tigner (Twist and Turn (Kyle Achilles, #4))
You decide to stop using the word “anachronism” when a seventeenth-century carriage drives through the gates of Buckingham Palace carrying twentieth-century Russian or African diplomats to be welcomed by a queen. “Anachronism” implies something long dead, and nothing is dead here. History, as they say, is alive and well and living in London.
Helene Hanff (The Duchess of Bloomsbury Street)
According to Eden’s personal secretary, Oliver Harvey, his master was ‘horrified’ by Churchill’s plan and tried to talk him out of it. He failed. In despair, he rang the US ambassador, John Winant, who, similarly taken aback, advised that such a visit would not be appropriate until the New Year at the earliest. Harvey too was appalled, noting, ‘I am aghast at the consequence of both [Churchill and Eden] being away at once. The British public will think quite rightly that they are mad.’ If Eden called off his Moscow mission, however, it would send the wrong message entirely to the Kremlin, since ‘it would be fatal to put off A.E.’s visit to Stalin to enable PM to visit Roosevelt. It would confirm all Stalin’s worst suspicions.’20 Eden persisted. He phoned the deputy prime minister, Clement Attlee, who agreed with him wholeheartedly and undertook to oppose the prime minister’s scheme at Cabinet. His objection had no effect: nothing would divert Churchill from his chosen course. When Cadogan spoke to him later that evening, to explain that Eden was ‘distressed’ at the idea of their both being out of the country at the same time, Churchill brushed him aside, saying, ‘That’s all right: that’ll work very well: I shall have Anthony where I want him.’21 Though he did not put it quite so bluntly when discussing this personally with Eden, Churchill left him in no doubt that ‘a complete understanding between Britain and the United States outweighed all else’.22 This conviction was reinforced by the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor and, according to the new CIGS, Brooke, the pressing need ‘to ensure that American help to this country does not dry up in consequence’.23 Eden’s opposition to Churchill’s visit had genuine diplomatic validity, but neither was he entirely disinterested, for, as Harvey put it, the prime ministerial trip would ‘take all the limelight off the Moscow visit’.24 The unfortunate Foreign Secretary was not only unwell but also disconsolate as HMS Kent set off into rising seas and darkening weather. The British party of Eden, Cadogan and Harvey, accompanied by Lieutenant General Sir Archibald Nye (the newly appointed Vice Chief of the Imperial General Staff) and a phalanx of officials, set foot on Russian soil on 13 December. Their arrival gave Cadogan (who was not a seasoned
Jonathan Dimbleby (Barbarossa: How Hitler Lost the War)
french diplomat traveled to America, and upon his return, wrote: 56 ALEXIS DE TOCQUEVILLE I sought for the greatness and genius of America in her harbors and her ample rivers, and it was not there; in her fertile fields and boundless prairies, and it was not there; in her rich mines and her vast world commerce, and it was not there. Not until I went to the churches of America and heard her pulpits aflame with righteousness, did I understand the secret of her genius and power. America is great because she is good, and if America ever ceases to be good, America will cease to be great.
Steven Rabb (The Founders' Speech to a Nation in Crisis: What the Founders would say to America today.)
The Imperial Household Law stipulates that only men whose fathers are emperors may inherit the throne. However, some scholars may argue that such law violates the principle that men and women be treated equally as set forth in Article 14 of the constitution." "You've studied the constitution?" The emperor eyes me keenly. "Yes," I say evenly. Thank you, Mariko and Mr. Fuchigami. "Historically, there has been precedence for females to reign." I list off the eight empresses, speaking in my own self-interest. Might as well. Men have been doing it for years. "We might even argue the goddess Amaterasu was the first to rule," I say lightly. My father smiles behind his hand. The empress takes a sip of tea. "I am inclined to agree with you.
Emiko Jean (Tokyo Ever After (Tokyo Ever After, #1))
and the Russians suddenly had lots of weapons but desperately needed money. Sure enough, in the mid nineties, Iran started buying weapons from Moscow. When Vladimir Putin came to power in 2000, we started buying even more weapons. When Hosseini and Darazi rose to power, we hired the Russians to help us build our first nuclear power plant and other nuclear facilities. They sold us nuclear materials and trained our nuclear scientists. Today, as you well know, we’ve developed military, diplomatic, and economic ties between our two countries, just as Ezekiel 38 suggests will happen.” Birjandi explained that the prophecies indicated that this Russian-Iranian alliance would also draw more nations. Ancient Cush, he said, was modern Sudan. Put was modern Libya and Algeria. Gomer was modern-day Turkey, and Beth-togarmah he described as a group of other countries in the Caucasus and Central Asia, all with Muslim majorities or strong Muslim minorities, that would come together under Russian leadership intending to attack Israel and plunder the Jewish people. “Now, look at 38:16,” the aging scholar said. “When does God say this war is going to happen?” Ali read the verse. “‘It shall come about in the last days that I will bring you against My land.’” “Precisely,” Birjandi said. “So this is clearly an End Times prophecy. It’s future-oriented, not something that has already happened.” “So who wins this apocalyptic Russian-Iranian war with Israel?” asked Ibrahim.
Joel C. Rosenberg (Damascus Countdown)
It is the disease of youth to mistake speed for strategy. Gravel mixed with honey: the perfect tone for delivering lies and ultimatums. Poverty doesn't bring men dignity. On the contrary it encourages envy and crime. A diplomat's face must be as unreadable as his mind. Kingdoms fall through luxury. Cities rise through virtue. No diplomat worth his salt should say everything that he is thinking. For all the bombast and hyperbole about the wonders of Rome, It was Valencia that had made Rodrigo Borgia what he is: a churchman in love with women, wealth, orange blossom and the taste of sardines. Dreams are what men use to comfort themselves when they cannot get what they want. It is my conjecture that the great men of history did without sleep.
Sarah Dunant (In the Name of the Family (Borgias #2))
The deadline is tonight. What kind of a sadist sets a deadline on a Saturday evening? And they just sent the instructions yesterday. Friday!” She didn’t say the words but her facial expression clearly screamed, ‘Fuck capital.
Cassandra K.D. Gilbert (Memories of Midnight: A Darling Diplomat Novel)