CEO's Recommended Reading List

BENS is advancing the conversation around critical topics in national security and the U.S. role in the world through the launch of our CEO’s Recommended Reading List.

Developed in consultation with members Col. Jennifer Pritzker (IL ARNG, ret.), Founder and Chair of the Pritzker Military Museum & Library, and Elihu Rose, New York University military historian, the list highlights essential works on statecraft, geopolitics, and civil-military relations, as well as emerging challenges in political risk and foreign policy.

Each month, we will feature one of the selected books in this newsletter. We hope the writers and topics represented on the reading list will generate ideas for future events, providing you with opportunities to discuss issues of interest with authors and experts directly.

In assembling the list, it was striking to see the wide range of interests our colleagues are closely tracking. Our goal is to add value and thought leadership to these conversations both through curating the best-of-class works and exploring new perspectives on the pressing issues of the day. We look forward to engaging with you in these reading list conversations.

Vr,

Joe Votel
General Joseph L. Votel, USA (Ret.)
President and CEO

FOUNDATIONS OF STRATEGY
cover image Strategic Thinking in 3D: A Guide for National Security, Foreign Policy, and Business Professionals
By Ross Harrison, 2013

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cover image Good Strategy, Bad Strategy: The Difference and Why It Matters
By Richard Rumelt, 2011

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cover image American National Security Strategy, 7th edition
By Michael Meese, Suzanne Nielsen, and Rachel Sondheimer, 2018

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cover image Political Risk: How Businesses and Organizations Can Anticipate Global Insecurity
By Condoleezza Rice and Amy Zegart, 2018

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book cover 7 Deadly Scenarios: A Military Futurist Explores War in the 21st Century
By Andrew Krepinevich, 2009

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book cover Orchestrating the Instruments of Power: A Critical Examination of the U.S. National Security System
By D. Robert Worley, 2015

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Exercise of Power cover Exercise of Power: American Failures, Successes, and a New Path Forward in the Post-Cold War World
By Robert Gates, 2020

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STATECRAFT AND GEOPOLITICS
book cover On Grand Strategy
By John Lewis Gaddis, 2018

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book cover Return of Marco Polo's World: War, Strategy, and American Interests in the Twenty-first Century
By Robert D. Kaplan, 2018

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book cover Statecraft and How to Restore America’s Standing in the World
By Dennis Ross, 2008

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book cover The Post-American World
By Fareed Zakaria, 2008

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book cover The Wise Men: Six Friends and the World They Made
By Walter Isaacson and Evan Thomas, 2013 edition

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book cover War by Other Means: Geoeconomics and Statecraft
By Robert Blackwill and Jennifer Harris, 2016

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book cover The Dragons and the Snakes: How the Rest Learned to Fight the West
By David Kilcullen, 2020

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book cover

War and the Art of Governance: Converting Combat Success into Political Victory
By Nadia Schadlow, 2017

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First Principles by Thomas Ricks First Principles: What America's Founders Learned from the Greeks and Romans and How That Shaped Our Country
By Thomas Ricks, 2020

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REGIONAL SECURITY
book cover The China Challenge: Shaping the Choices of a Rising Power
By Thomas Christensen, 2015

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book cover Asia's Cauldron: The South China Sea and the End of a Stable Pacific
By Robert D. Kaplan, 2015

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CIVIL-MILITARY RELATIONS
book cover How Everything Became War and the Military Became Everything: Tales from the Pentagon
By Rosa Brooks, 2017

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book cover The Culture of Military Organizations
Edited by Peter R. Mansoor and Murray Williamson, 2019

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book cover America in the World: A History of U.S. Diplomacy and Foreign Policy
By Robert B. Zoellick, 2020

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ADVERSARIES
book cover The Age of Illusions: How America Squandered Its Cold War Victory
By Andrew J. Bacevich, 2020

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book cover The Twilight War: The Secret History of America’s Thirty-Year Conflict with Iran
By David Crist, 2013

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book cover Active Defense: China's Military Strategy Since 1949
By M. Taylor Fravel, 2019

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book cover Dark Territory: The Secret History of Cyber War
By Fred M. Kaplan, 2016

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book cover Surveillance Valley: The Secret Military History of the Internet
By Yasha Levine, 2018

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book cover The Politics of Space Security: Strategic Constraint and the Pursuit of National Interests. 3rd edition.
By James Clay Moltz, 2019

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book cover My Journey at the Nuclear Brink
By William J. Perry, 2015

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The Kill Chain book cover The Kill Chain: Defending America in the Future of High-Tech Warfare
By Christian Brose, 2020

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BUDGETARY CONCERNS, RESEARCH, AND DEFENSE CONTRACTORS
book cover The Pentagon’s Brain: An Uncensored History of DARPA, America’s Top-Secret Military Research Agency
By Annie Jacobsen, 2015

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book cover Defense Management Reform: How to Make the Pentagon Work Better and Cost Less
By Peter Levine, 2020

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