Dr. Ravenal's "Never Again" is one of the best examinations of America's post-Vietnam foreign policy I've ever had the pleasure of reading. Also, the 1980 paperback edition comes with a bonus essay covering the Russian invasion of Afghanistan which provides an excellent critique of America's ill-conceived policies toward the Middle East which is in many ways as fresh now as the day he wrote it. Sure, the individual actors are different, the US is the one mired in an Afghan quagmire now instead of the Soviets, but on a grander scale, not much has changed. Dr. Ravenal makes a great case for America disengaging entirely from the Middle East, even in the face of Soviet aggression. He argued that an America free of all these inevitable (and expensive) entanglements could readily solve its dependence on foreign oil. One could call him prescient, but the truth of the matter is we've just been struggling with these same issues for the past 28 years and continued to pursue the same doomed policies Dr. Ravenal cautions against.
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