THE ACCIDENTAL ADMIRAL

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THE ACCIDENTAL ADMIRAL
A Sailor Takes Command at NATO
  • ISBN/SKU: 978-1-61251-704-9
  • Binding: Hardcover & eBook
  • Era: 21st Century
  • Number of Pages: 288
  • Subject: Autobiography
  • Date Available: October 2014
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BOOK NEWS: The Accidental Admiral: A Sailor Takes Command at NATO by Naval Institute Press

 

SNEAK PEEK: The Accidental Admiral: A Sailor Takes Command at NATO by Naval Institute Press

  • Follow Adm. Stavridis on Facebook and Twitter.
  • Read Adm. Staviridis' column at Foreign Policy.com.
  • Adm. Stavridis on "Fareed Zakaria GPS" - "ISIS has said it intends to fly its black flag over the White House."
  • Adm. Stavridis on Morning Joe discusses the need for boots on the ground.
  • Adm. Stavridis on Fox & Friends discusses the need for ground troop support to defeat ISIS.
  • Watch Adm. Stavridis on MSNBC's Ronan Farrow Daily discuss the need for ground troop support to defeat ISIS.
  • Watch Adm. Stavridis on "Lou Dobbs Tonight," here.
  • Watch Adm. Stavridis on CNN's "The Lead with Jake Tapper," here.
  • Listen to Adm. Stavridis on Secure Freedom Radio w/host Frank Gaffney, here.
  • Watch Adm. Stavridis on "The Lead with Jack Tapper" discussing ISIS.
  • Watch Adm. Stavridis on Fox News "Happening Now" discussing ISIS 'angel investors.'
  • Watch Adm. Stavridis on CNN here assessing the air strikes on ISIS.
  • Adm. Stavridis on Bloomberg TV here discussing strategy to defeat ISIS.
  • Watch Adm. Stavridis on "Morning Joe" here discussing international support to defeat ISIS.
  • Watch Adm. Stavridis on "The Rachel Maddow Show" here discussing the US coalition and strategy against ISIS.
  • Adm. Stavridis on "Who's Funding ISIS?" on NBCNews.com.
  • How to Dismantle ISIS by Adm. James Stavridis in The Guardian.

Praise for The Accidental Admiral ~

"Much of the strength of the book lies in its style and structure. The text is admirably succinct but retains warmth and candour throughout, which make for an engaging read. A good balance is struck between specific events during the author’s command and general issues of concern to today’s senior officer… In this concise and readable memoir, Admiral Stavridis has provided an insightful overview of NATO operations during his eventful command. More importantly, perhaps, he has made a well-informed contribution to the debate about the future of the Alliance."

The Naval Review

“Adm. Stavridis, through his recollection of his friendship with Amb. Rogozin and others, demonstrates that he understands well the importance of partnerships and friendships in navigating global crises as part of the “smart power” agenda that he personally promotes. U.S. foreign policy—toward Russia and in general—would benefit if it remembered that isolating adversaries may feel moral, but resolving crises requires a foundation of personal engagement. The White House could learn a lot from Adm. Stavridis.”

The Diplomatic Courier

The Accidental Admiral covers only a short period of time but it is packed full of absorbing and fascinating stuff. His book is one of the best autobiographies of a senior officer to appear for many a year. Stavridis, who is a prolific reader of everything from social media to newspaper editorials in three languages, also writes extremely well and without a plethora of acronyms. After so many dry and dull military stories, the Stavridis story is like a cleansing gale of salt air.  His autobiography is breathtaking and unputdownable.”

—Warships International Fleet Review

“Admiral Jim Stavridis is one of the most forward-thinking military officers and enlightened leaders of his generation. Afghanistan, Libya, the Balkans, Syria, piracy and cyber threats were just a few of the enormous challenges he superbly handled as Supreme Allied Commander at NATO. The Accidental Admiral gives readers a window into what it is like to wrestle with the toughest 21st century problems of strategy and diplomacy.”

—Robert M. Gates, Secretary of Defense, 2008-11; author of Duty: Memoirs of a Secretary at War

“Jim Stavridis is a unique breed of leader—at once both a seasoned practitioner, and a thoughtful, charismatic intellectual. He embodies the very definition of a ‘renaissance man.’ A generation of our leaders benefited from working for and with Jim—myself included. Readers of The Accidental Admiral will benefit from the insights of a proven leader's reflections of a pivotal time in history.”

—Gen. Stanley A. McChrystal, USA (Ret.), Commander, U.S. Forces Afghanistan, 2009-10; co-founder and partner of the McChrystal Group

“Admiral James Stavridis is a military intellectual who has written an engaging, deeply thoughtful book about leadership in the crucible of great events. In particular, his arguments about the continued relevance of NATO are prescient given the crisis in Ukraine. His defense of Generals Stanley McChrystal, David Petraeus, and John Allen is both poignant and necessary. This book should be required reading for young officers.”

—Robert D. Kaplan, best-selling author of Balkan Ghosts: A Journey Through History and The Revenge of Geography:  What the Map Tells Us About Coming Conflicts and the Battle Against Fate

“There was nothing accidental about Jim Stavridis becoming an Admiral or Supreme Allied Commander in Europe. He is one of the best of the new breed of military officers—equally proficient at waging war and waging peace, equally learned in military history and cultural history. Whether dealing with Afghanistan, Russia or the Middle East, Jim has always demonstrated an ability to find new ways to look at and try to resolve age-old problems.  In The Accidental Admiral, he brilliantly shares hard won lessons learned on the application of ‘smart power’ in the modern world and also offers readers critical insights into leadership, innovation, planning and communication. After I got to know Jim and to appreciate the range of his intellect and interests, I regularly would ask, ‘What are you reading Admiral?’ The books he recommended were always great reads from which I learned a lot. The same will be true for anyone who reads The Accidental Admiral.”

—Joseph I. Lieberman, Senior Counsel, Kasowitz, Benson, Torres & Friedman; United States Senator, Retired

“Admiral James Stavridis may be an ‘accidental admiral’ but he is no ordinary commander. He is equal parts thinker and doer, asking hard questions and continually challenging himself and the men and women under his command. His tour of duty as Supreme Allied Commander in Europe encompassed some of the most trying and important issues of our time in Europe and the Middle East. A rollicking and fun read.”

—Anne-Marie Slaughter, President and CEO of The New America Foundation; Director, Policy Planning Staff, U.S. Department of State, 2009-11

*   *   *   *   *   *   *   *   *   *

After he was selected to be NATO’s sixteenth Supreme Allied Commander, The New York Times described Jim Stavridis as a “Renaissance admiral.” A U. S. Naval Academy graduate with a master’s degree and doctorate from The Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University, conversant in both French and Spanish, this author of numerous books and articles impressed the Navy’s leaders and senior Pentagon civilians with his wide range of interests, educational background, keen understanding of strategic doctrine, mastery of long-range planning, and command of international affairs.

Since NATO had previously been led by generals, Stavridis saw his assignment as the first admiral to take command as somewhat “accidental.” As the American and NATO commander in Europe responsible for 120,000 coalition troops serving in fifty-one nations, on three continents and at sea he had come a long way since almost leaving the Navy for law school five years after receiving his commission.

The Accidental Admiral offers an intimate look at the challenges of directing NATO operations in Afghanistan, military intervention in Libya, and preparation for possible war in Syria—as well as worrying about the Balkans, cyber threats, and piracy, all while cutting NATO by a third due to budget reductions by the twenty-eight nations of the alliance. More than just describing the history of the times, Stavridis also shares his insights into the personalities of President Barack Obama, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Secretaries of Defense Robert Gates, Leon Panetta, and Chuck Hagel, Afghan President Hamid Karzai; Generals David Petraeus, Stanley McChrystal, John Allen, and many more.

Known as an innovator and an early adopter of technology and social media, Stavridis’ ability to think “outside the box” and sail in uncharted waters is unmatched. He shares his insights on leadership, strategic communications, planning, and the convergence of threats that will confront the United States and its allies in the near future. Stavridis is an advocate of the use of “Smart Power,” which he defines as the balance of hard and soft power. He explains that in creating security in the twenty-first century it is critical to build bridges, not walls, and stresses the need to connect international, interagency, and public-private actors to achieve security.

ADM. JAMES STAVRIDIS, USN (RET.) is a 1976 distinguished graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy who spent over 35 years on active service in the Navy. He commanded destroyers and a carrier strike group in combat and served for seven years as a four-star admiral, including nearly four years as the first Navy officer chosen as Supreme Allied Commander for Global Operations at NATO. After retiring from the Navy he was named the dean of The Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University in 2013. In addition, he currently serves as the U.S. Naval Institute's Chair of the Board of Directors. He has written articles on global security issues for The New York Times, The Washington Post, Atlantic Magazine, Naval War College Review, and Proceedings and is the author or co-author of several books, including Command at Sea 6th Ed. and Destroyer Captain. Browse his webpage.

Customer Reviews
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Average Customer Reviews
5.00 Stars
Master Leader and Commander
Tuesday, October 7, 2014
By: Francis G. Hoffman
An engaging book from a proven, creative and independent leader. Admiral Stavridis may have risen to the most senior position at NATO by a fluke; but his success is no accident, as he was the most intellectual naval officer of his generation. He earned his stars though persistent self-education, formal schooling to include a PhD from the Fletcher School (which he now heads), and by dint of professional success and development in a series of tough jobs including command at U.S. Southern Command and Supreme Allied Command, Europe. "The Accidental Admiral" is chock-full of insights, a skipper now looking back at the wake of his career. In succinct chapters, he captures the various challenges he faced in the crucible of command. His unique perspective and ability to think long-term and strategically, and transcend various cultures and communities with empathy is evident in almost every chapter. The chapters on strategic planning, leadership, innovation, strategic communications could be required reading for any graduate school in international affairs or business administration. Enthusiastically recommended for students of U.S. security challenges, and those interested in the leadership development of the next generation of national security professionals.
 
Highly Recommended.
Monday, October 27, 2014
By: Capt. Peter Swartz, USN (Ret.)
Highly recommended. Don’t push it aside. I read it on the flight back from Europe. Chapter list will give you an idea of what he covers: -Individual chapters on each NATO operation: Afghanistan, Libya, Syria, The Balkans. -Individual chapters on dealing with Russia and with Israel. -(Four-star) Leadership Challenges and Pitfalls: “McChrystal, Petraeus, Allen . . . and me.” -Chapters dealing with lessons learned and advice for the future, on How leaders make things happen; Strategic communication; Strategic Planning & Strategy; Innovation; NATO; “Convergence” (“What keeps me awake at night”). You may not be interested in all of it, but there’s at least one chapter that you will find important and very useful. And it’s all an easy read. Again, highly recommended.
 

 
 

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