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In Whose Interest?

Thomas Meaney: Truman’s Plan

6 December 2018
The Accidental President: Harry S. Truman and the Four Months that Changed the World 
by A.J. Baime.
Doubleday, 431 pp., £20, February 2018, 978 0 85752 366 2
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The Marshall Plan: Dawn of the Cold War 
by Benn Steil.
Oxford, 606 pp., £25, March 2018, 978 0 19 875791 7
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... can-do scheme of the postwar decades, when the United States pursued its interests headlong, but in a way that convinced its partners that what was best for America was also best for the world. As BennSteil recounts in his refreshingly heterodox new history, the plan was an outgrowth of the 1947 Moscow conference, where discussions between the US Secretary of State, George Marshall, and Stalin and ...

Were we bullied?

Jamie Martin: Bretton Woods

21 November 2013
The Battle of Bretton Woods: John Maynard Keynes,Harry Dexter White and the Making of a New World Order 
by Benn Steil.
Princeton, 449 pp., £19.95, February 2013, 978 0 691 14909 7
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... it proper to treat the humblest and least responsible Balkan country’. Were the British being bullied? Many Conservatives and imperialists believed so, and it’s one of the core assertions of BennSteil’s new history of the negotiations leading up to Bretton Woods. On Steil’s view, Britain was pressured into making a ‘Faustian bargain’: give up the one thing that seemed to guarantee ...

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