Noteworthy Books

Walter Isaacson provides deep insight into the background and history of Elon Musk, one of the uniquely creative and enigmatic minds of our time.

Walter Isaacson
Elon Musk

The title of this book tells all.  Perspectives on changing geopolitics and great power competition in modern times.  The shifting sands around China, Russia, and the United States.  A definite must to read!  I couldn’t put this book down.

David Sanger and Mary Brooks
New Cold Wars: China’s Rise, Russia’s Invasion, and America’s Struggle to Defend the West

Henry Kissinger does a wonderful job, and creates a deeply engaging read, as he profiles six, 20th century world leaders who have had major impact on the world stage. A personal view from one of the great statesmen of our time. Profiling the careers, priorities, styles, and idiosyncrasies of six historic figures. An important read.

Henry Kissinger
Leadership: Six Studies in World Strategy

Highly recommend this biography of James Baker, Washington’s Republican dealmaker. From the early years to the Gulf War, from the disputed election of George W. Bush to the invasion of Iraq, this book gives insights into the life and decision making of one of the most influential Washington insiders of our time. Trusted friend, advisor, and confidante to the Bush family; the ultimate Washington power broker.

Peter Baker and Susan Glasser
The Man Who Ran Washington: The Life and Times of James A. Baker III

A carefully researched and well written work on the last twenty years of US involvement in Afghanistan. Offering a clear eyed assessment of flawed US policy based on changing mission scope, lack of understanding of the enemy, mismanaged global alliances, and a naïve march toward democracy in the region.

Craig Whitlock
The Afghanistan Papers: A Secret History of the War

A worthwhile read from Malcolm Gladwell describing how typically unsuccessful we are at discerning other peoples’ veracity. And how we want to believe that others are transparent and truthful, though we are often mistaken. Eye opening and thought provoking.

Malcolm Gladwell
Talking to Strangers

A truly excellent cradle to grave biography of the incomparable Winston Churchill – his tenacity, fortitude, and courage, as well as his quirks and peccadilloes. A worthwhile read about a man who changed the course of 20th century history.

Andrew Roberts
Winston Churchill: Walking with Destiny

An inspiring yet incredibly sad story of the destruction of the town of Villeret, on the border of Belgium and France, during World War I. Bravery in the face of severe hardship and danger on the part of some, and complicity on the part of others. With a range of very human emotions and experiences throughout. An engaging read by Ben McIntyre.

Ben McIntyre
The Englishman’s Daughter

Yet another fabulous tale meticulously written by Ben McIntyre about Operation Mincement, the great deception that preceded the Allied invasion of Sicily in 1943. A turning point in the War, magnificently told.

Ben McIntyre
Operation Mincement

An interesting story about a young man in Milan late in WWII as the war is waning, and the Nazis recognize that the end is near. Upon coming of age, he survives the war by joining the Nazis in northern Italy and ultimately becoming the personal driver of a German General. Through this, he gains an inside seat to the Nazi war machine and works in secret to feed information to the Italian resistance. A worthwhile read, and such a story of courage from someone quite young.

Mark Sullivan
Beneath a Scarlet Sky

A clear and thoughtful description of the serious limitations of today’s AI. The AI that functions well within narrow contexts but cannot begin to approach broad or general intelligence, or human sentience. AI today as machine learning functioning on large data sets – a far cry from deep understanding and cognitive reasoning. The authors present well developed and reasoned insights into how much more is required for true, sustainable, general artificial intelligence. An enlightening read.

Gary Marcus and Ernest David
Rebooting AI:Building Artificial Intelligence We Can Trust

An insightful discussion of the factors that have led to inequality within and across the nations of the world, and to a mistrust of global elites and governments. Challenges stemming from technology, globalization, and climate change, as well as lack of effective education, current skills, and broad opportunity. Bremmer methodically compares and contrasts various programs that have been implemented to try to address growing inequality, such as universal basic income and cash transfers. Cogent, thought provoking observations and predictions: the best explanation I have read of the rise of populism in the 21st center, and the “underlying emergencies” that have fomented so much anger and division in our social fabric.

Iam Bremmer
Us vs. Them: The Failure of Globalism

A delightful and engaging set of allegories from the fascinating life of Admiral William McRaven. Always good to be reminded that persistence matters. And that everything worth achieving takes hard work and support from others.

William H. McRaven
Make Your Bed: Little Things That Can Change Your Life…And Maybe the World

A book every senior executive needs to read! Yes, it has a bit of cyber jargon, but it is almost impossible to discuss the security challenges of cyber and new technologies thoughtfully without some understanding of the underlying components. Bravo to Dick Clarke and Rob Knake on a book deep with real insight and practical, smart recommendations. Well done, gentlemen! This is a book I read with a pen in my hand.

Richard A. Clarke and Robert K. Knake
The Fifth Domain

A wonderful book by Melinda Gates on the importance of empowering women in the developing world, starting with family planning. Melinda Gates’ kindness, humility, intellect, and generosity of sprit come through in the early and late chapters that highlight her own family and professional experiences.

Melinda Gates
The Moment of Lift

A book everyone should read! A rigorously researched and thoughtfully presented economic history of the US. From the founding of the country and the roots of the Civil War to modern day capitalism and the rise of populism. A wonderful reminder of how the American pioneer spirit set the foundation for innovation and creative destruction. And how today’s dialogue is putting that spirit at risk.

Alan Greenspan and Adrian Wooldridge
Capitalism in America: A History

A series of very relatable vignettes about how people have used data and objective information to make better decisions, often contradicting their instincts. Stories of everything from the NBA to the military.

Michael Lewis
The Undoing Project

AI in geopolitics and big picture implications in everything from international relations to healthcare. Extremely worthwhile if you have interest in AI, the global changes that may occur, and particularly China’s role.

Kai-Fu Lee
AI Superpowers

One of the seminal works on cybersecurity. A must read.

Richard Clarke
Cyber War: The Next Threat to National Security and What to Do About It

Reads like a great cyber spy novel – but it’s true. A required read.

Marc Goodman
Future Crimes: Everything Is Connected, Everyone Is Vulnerable and What We Can Do About It

I loved this book. What a wonderful journey tracing the lives and impact of Sandra Day O’Connor and Ruth Bader Ginsberg, the first two women on the Supreme Court. With very different backgrounds and styles, and their own approaches, they helped to make the courts recognize women as capable individuals with full rights in the eyes of the law. Brava!

Linda Hirshman
Sisters in Law: How Sandra Day O’Connor and Ruth Bader Ginsburg Went to the Supreme Court and Changed the World

A well researched, in depth expose of the opaque world of zero day exploits. Should be required reading for anyone interested in the cyber ecosystem. Where hackers, governmental agencies, and private companies all jockey and compete for back doors to systems, software vulnerabilities to be exploited, and increasing amounts of money changing hands. Where the good guys are not always good, and the bad guys sometimes can be helpful.

Nicole Perlroth
This is How They Tell Me the World Ends

A personal memoir from the former CEO of Morgan Stanley. Reflections on a career, life decisions and personal relationships, and the saga and ultimate triumph of Morgan Stanley. From one of the most well known Wall St CEOs.

John Mack
Up Close and All In

This is an important book, a book everyone should read. Laura Denardis gives a thorough and articulate deep dive into the risks and considerations of next gen cyber security, the Internet of Things. When digital control systems control physical outcomes, and all the complications that will arise. Bravo!

Laura Denardis
The Internet in Everything

An excellent account of Harry Truman and the timeframe in 1945 between the death of FDR and a reluctant Truman becoming President, and the decision to use the atom bomb on Japan to speed the ending of World War II. Thoughtfully written about Truman being thrown into negotiating the future of the globe with the likes of Churchill and Stalin.

A.J. Baime
The Accidental President: Harry S. Truman and the Four Months that Changed the World

The fascinating, true story of Eddie Chapman, a lifelong criminal and con artist, who during WWII used his skills of treachery and deceit to become a highly valued double agent. Oddly loyal to his British countrymen and handlers while tricking the Germans into believing that they had brought him over to their side.

Ben McIntyre
Agent Zigzag

Simply put, this book is important. Christian Brose walks through in great detail – and from an inside seat – the deep challenges facing the US military and military strategy with respect to outdated thinking, old approaches, and obsolete weaponry, particularly in the face of a rising, aggressive, and technologically focused China. His meticulous, methodical presentation of the issues and barriers is quite powerful, and helps to explain why the solutions are so difficult and complex. One can only hope that everyone in Congress and DoD, as well as in the broader military industrial complex, will read this book. Immediately.

Christian Brose
The Kill Chain, Defending America in the Future of High-tech Warfare

Ben Macintyre, the British writer and journalist, is a fabulous author. His thrilling yet true spy stories about Kim Philby and Oleg Gordievsky are both terrific reads. The incredible ways in which the intelligence services in the US, UK, and Russia dance with and around one another are astounding. And the ways in which these services convince spies for the other side to become double agents – by appealing to hubris, ideology, and often money – are simply incredible. Pleasurable and fascinating reads. Can’t wait to read more of Ben Macintyre’s works.

Ben Macintyre
A Spy Among Friends: Kim Philby and the Great Betrayal
The Spy and the Traitor: The Greatest Espionage Story of the Cold War

The amazing story of the daring young woman who led the Alliance Network of the French Resistance during World War II. How an “all too easily dismissed” woman created a deep network of brave resistance fighters and indomitable information handlers funneling intelligence to the British and Allies, helped track German movements and installations on land and sea and in the air. A staggering tale of bravery against daunting odds.

Lynne Olsen
Madame Fourcade’s Secret War

Very interesting insights as to why we do the things we do and what it takes to change our habits and practices. Excellent case studies of human behavior and the underlying motivations and response to stimuli.

Charles Duhigg
The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business

An important work that explains in depth the role of autonomous weaponry in modern warfare. Instructive discussions of key topics in the application of AI in 21st century conflict: the difference between autonomous capabilities and freedom in decision making; manned and unmanned systems in military operations; lethal decision making in machine-to-machine combat; robots, drones, and autonomous tanks in battlefield operations; and rules of engagement and degree of autonomy from country to country.

Paul Scharre
Army of None

A well researched and clearly articulated account of Russian hacking around the 2016 election and why effective cyber policy is so difficult to develop.

David Sanger
The Perfect Weapon

Thoughtful and well researched …how nations and businesses are fighting for control of the internet.

Scott Malcomson
Splinternet How Geopolitics and Commerce are Fragmenting the World Wide Web

Extremely well researched and thoughtfully written. Terrific insights into the very human decision making that led us into the Vietnam War.

Gordon Goldstein
Lessons in Disaster: McGeorge Bundy and the Path to War in Vietnam

Wonderful and balanced perspectives on the foreign policy machines in the Bush and Obama administrations. The good, the bad, and the unfortunate…

David Rothkopf
National Insecurity: American Leadership in an Age of Fear

A brilliant read describing the incredible and unique high-tech ecosystem in Israel.

Dan Senor and Saul Singer
Start-Up Nation The Story of Israel’s Economic Miracle

Thought provoking questions about the cognitive capabilities of man and machines.

Byron Reese
The Fourth Age: Smart Robots, Conscious Computers, and the Future of Humanity

An incredibly interesting read about that tracks the strategic, and military, and geopolitical value of the seas.

Admiral James Stavridis
Sea Power

Excellent insights into the policies and approaches among nations in a digital world.

Adam Segal
The Hacked World Order: How Nations Fight, Trade, Maneuver, and Manipulate in the Digital Age

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