Why Leaders Lie: The Truth About Lying in International Politics

Why Leaders Lie: The Truth About Lying in International Politics

John J. Mearsheimer


For greater than 20 years, John J. Mearsheimer has been considered as one of many greatest realist thinkers on overseas coverage. transparent and incisive, a fearlessly sincere analyst, his coauthored 2007 New York Times bestseller, The Israel foyer and U.S. overseas Policy, aroused a firestorm with its unflinching examine the making of America's center East coverage. Now he's taking a glance at one other arguable yet understudied element of diplomacy: lying.

In Why Leaders Lie, Mearsheimer offers the 1st systematic research of mendacity as a device of statecraft, opting for the types, the explanations, and the capability expenses and advantages. Drawing on a trove of examples, he argues that leaders usually lie for reliable strategic purposes, so a blanket condemnation is unrealistic and unwise. but there are other forms of deception in addition to mendacity, together with concealment and spinning. might be no contrast is extra very important than that among mendacity to a different country and mendacity to one's personal humans. Mearsheimer used to be surprised to find how strange interstate mendacity has been; given the ambience of mistrust one of the nice powers, he came across that outright deceit is tough to tug off and therefore hardly definitely worth the attempt. Plus it occasionally backfires whilst it does happen. Khrushchev lied concerning the measurement of the Soviet missile strength, sparking an American build-up. Eisenhower acquired stuck mendacity approximately U-2 secret agent flights in 1960, which scuttled an upcoming summit with Krushchev. Leaders extra frequently misinform their very own publics, occasionally with harmful outcomes. even though the explanations can be noble--Franklin Roosevelt, for instance, lied to the yank humans approximately German U-boats attacking the destroyer Greer in 1940, to construct a case for struggle opposed to Hitler-they can simply bring about catastrophe, as with the Bush administration's falsehoods approximately Iraq's guns of mass destruction.

There hasn't ever been a pointy research of foreign mendacity. Now a number one specialist fills the distance with a richly proficient and powerfully argued book.

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