In This Review

The Diplomacy of Surprise: Hitler, Nixon, Sadat
The Diplomacy of Surprise: Hitler, Nixon, Sadat
By Michael I. Handel
Center for International Affairs, Harvard University, 1981, 369 pp

The author's purpose is to establish some patterns and theories from a comparative study of notable examples of the surprise move and the diplomatic coup. His case studies are of Hitler's coups in the 1930s and his pact with Stalin, Nixon's opening to China, and Sadat's feats of the past decade, such as kicking out the Russians in 1972 and going to Jerusalem in 1977. He adds little to our knowledge of the various episodes, but the analysis, though at times labored, is a contribution to understanding the nature of diplomacy and the relation of intelligence (both kinds) to foreign policy.