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The revenge of geography : what the map…
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The revenge of geography : what the map tells us about coming conflicts… (original 2012; edition 2012)

by Robert D. Kaplan

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426924,790 (3.55)12
Member:infopump
Title:The revenge of geography : what the map tells us about coming conflicts and the battle against fate
Authors:Robert D. Kaplan
Info:New York : Random House, 2012.
Collections:Kindle
Rating:****
Tags:Read, 2012, ebook, Kindle

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The Revenge of Geography: What the Map Tells Us About Coming Conflicts and the Battle Against Fate by Robert D. Kaplan (2012)

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An interesting analysis of how location, location, location matters for a country also. How the fate of landlocked countries is closely tied to countries that surround it that have access to ports such as the need for Afghanistan to depend on Iran or Pakistan to export it's goods. The evolution or rather the non-evolution of Russia as a true western power due to lack of access to warm water ports. The unique position that the US of A occupies bounded by two major oceans. A very interesting and readable study.
  danoomistmatiste | Jan 24, 2016 |
An interesting analysis of how location, location, location matters for a country also. How the fate of landlocked countries is closely tied to countries that surround it that have access to ports such as the need for Afghanistan to depend on Iran or Pakistan to export it's goods. The evolution or rather the non-evolution of Russia as a true western power due to lack of access to warm water ports. The unique position that the US of A occupies bounded by two major oceans. A very interesting and readable study.
  kkhambadkone | Jan 17, 2016 |
This book started out like the kind of book I really dislike: throwing out of lots of names and semi-obscure references with little attempt to engage the reader. I was doubly disappointed because I have read Monsoon by the same author and found it so much better.

It got better in the second part, but I had trouble following Mr. Kaplan's argument. He takes a very broad, rambling approach to his topic.

If you decide to read this book, I recommend you begin with the Afterword: it provides an excellent overview and the clearest explanation of the author's ideas.

p.s. As a Canadian, I was greatly offended by the description of Canada as "the arctic" bordering the U.S. to the north. ( )
  LynnB | Nov 4, 2014 |
This is a very good book about how geography is a big influence on how nations function around the world. He brings in ideas from famous geographers and historians of the past in his effort to explain the situations countries find themselves in. Russia has a vast plain subject to many invasions. Hence, a fortress mentality. Countries which develop sea power function differently than those who have concentratd on land forces. Sometimes, certain locations cause countries to have considerable effect on those near them, such as Iran (Perdia - the pivot) and Turkey, the successor to the Ottoman Empire. Quite a bit was written on China and India, which are fairly close to each other, but vastly different. I enjoyed this book immensely. ( )
  vpfluke | Jun 2, 2014 |
Kaplan's main thesis is great food for thought; that is: the more the world is connected, the more strategic geographic locations are important. I know I'm going to be reading world news in a better more informed way. This is a very interesting book that suffers from bad writing and editing. Kaplan is quite good at making what could be a perfectly good sentence into a convoluted one. That said, I know more now that I did before about the interplay of geography, politics and strategy. ( )
  konastories | May 30, 2014 |
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Epigraph
But precisely because I expect little of the human condition, man's periods of felicity, his partial progress, his efforts to begin over again and to continue, all seem to me like so many prodigies which nearly compensate for the monstrous mass of ills and defeats, of indifference and error. Catastrophe and ruin will come; disorder will triumph, but order will too, from time to time.

--Marguerite Yourcenar
Memoirs of Hadrian (1951)
Dedication
TO THE MEMORY OF
HARVEY SICHERMAN
1945-2012
PRESIDENT,
FOREIGN POLICY RESEARCH INSTITUTE,
PHILADELPHIA
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Preface

A good place to understand the present, and to ask questions about the future, is on the ground, traveling as slowly as possible.
Chapter 1

To recover our sense of geography, we must first fix the moment in recent history when we most profoundly lost it, explain why we lost it, and elucidate how that affected our assumptions about the world.
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The insights, discoveries, and theories of great geographers and geopolitical thinkers of the past look back at critical pivots in history and then look forward at the evolving global scene.

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