Eliot Cohen Reviews Supreme Command during Warfare

The next National History Center and Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars weekly history seminar features Eliot Cohen, the Robert E. Osgood Professor of Strategic Studies at Johns Hopkins University’s Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies. He discusses the ways in which politicians and soldiers have interacted in the conduct of warfare from the nineteenth century to the present, using not only from scholarship but also from his own firsthand observations of the Bush administration at work.  Cohen draws on examples from the history of human conflicts about civilian wartime leadership, it is essential to remember that circumstances differ from war to war. Abraham Lincoln and Woodrow Wilson each operated in different conditions, as did FDR, Churchill, and LBJ.

Eliot Cohen is also the Director of Strategic Studies Program and Director of Philip Merrill Center for Strategic Studies at SAIS. His most recent, prize-winning book is Supreme Command: Soldiers, Statesmen, and Leadership in Wartime (2003).  In 2007-09 he served as Counselor of the Department of State, where he was Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice’s senior adviser, especially on Afghanistan and Iraq.

The seminar took place on Monday, April 12, 2010 at the Wilson Center and is part of the weekly history seminar that aims to facilitate the understanding of contemporary affairs in light of historical knowledge of all times and places, and from multiple perspectives. Click here to see a complete listing of the schedule of speakers and topics, as well as videos of the presentations.