A former American diplomat reveals a disconnect between Washington policymakers and those who work in US embassies.
An insider’s look into the day-to-day work of US diplomats, To the Secretary offers an unparalleled window onto American foreign policy as it plays out in countries around the world. In a tour of the most fascinating and overlooked State Department cables leaked by hackers in November 2010, former diplomat and scholar Mary Thompson-Jones depicts the work of ambassadors and foreign service officers through their firsthand narratives dealing with crises, corruption, anti- Americanism, and difficult world leaders. From the story of Bulgaria’s Aleksi “The Tractor” Petrov to disappearing ballot ink in Ukraine, Thompson-Jones reveals the depth and breadth of embassy life as diplomats report from forgotten corners of the globe, conduct diplomacy in war zones, and patiently advance often conflicting interests in American foreign policy. Honest and critical, To the Secretary describes the deepening gulf between decision makers in Washington and their diplomats in the field―and what it means for the world at large.