Daniel Drezner is always here

Daniel Drezner is always here to mentally scar foreign policy wonks:

I may never forgive Greg Djerejian for pointing me to this Alex Beam article in the Sunday Boston Globe about what happens when policy wonks write novels with… shudder… sex scenes.

Former Kennedy School dean Joseph Nye usually writes the kind of books discussed earnestly at policy forums and perused by index-skimming colleagues killing time at university bookstores. But no more! In his just-published novel, “The Power Game” (“a taut but sensitive political thriller” — Tina Brown), Nye reaches out for a whole new audience. Here protagonist Peter Cutler, the proverbial “high State Department official,” engages in some ill-advised personal diplomacy with the alluring Alexa Byrnes, herself a policy playa at the Department of Defense. Cutler is married, albeit not to Ms. Byrnes:

Alexa led me to the bed in the middle of the enormous room and pulled me down beside her. I kissed her breasts and ran my hand between her thighs. She gripped my shoulders tightly. Unlike the first time I made love to Alexa, when the ecstasy had been eroded by a sense of anxiety and uncertainty, I was sucked into this moment as quickly and completely as if I had placed my feet in quicksand. Memories from years ago blended with intense physical excitement in a driving, pounding torrent of passion.

As Dan gleefully points out, this is the man who pioneered the terms, and theories, of “hard” and “soft” power. All I can say is that I can never read Foreign Affairs the same way again.

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