Diplomacy Shaken Not Stirred

August 20, 2021
Ancient_Near_East_1400BC

Mark Twain once said that history doesn’t repeat itself, but it does rhyme. The repetition of patterns of events and responses is one reason that scholars and policymakers often turn to the past for insight into how to best deal with contemporary events. It is also why classic works of history and strategy — such as Thucydides’ The History of the Peloponnesian War — have become classic and remain relevant. In this episode of Horns of a Dilemma, Dr. Paul Edgar, associate director of the Clements Center at the University of Texas, Austin, goes 1,000 years before Thucydides to find enduring lessons as told in an inscription on a statue from the 15th century BCE.  While the names of the rulers and powers may not be familiar, Edgar illustrates how the themes of strategy, alliance, and statecraft in great-power competition are familiar and relevant to power struggles today. This talk was recorded at the Summer Seminar on History and Statecraft, sponsored by the Clements Center at the University of Texas, Austin, and held in Beaver Creek, Colorado.

Image: Enyavar via Wikimedia Commons