Response to reviews
- 33 Downloads
It is an honor to participate in this discussion of our book, Why Leaders Fight, with three distinguished scholars of international relations: Jeff Carter, Sarah Croco, and Jessica Weeks. Our goal in writing Why Leaders Fight was to demonstrate, systematically and empirically, how the different life experiences of world leaders shapes how they behave in international politics, especially when it comes to the initiation and escalation of military conflicts. We were gratified that all of the commentators viewed the book in positive terms, and we appreciate the opportunity to respond to the topics they raise and advance our collective understanding of leaders and world politics.
The largest contribution of our book is in systematically demonstrating the relevance of leaders in making national choices about war and peace. That might sound like common sense to a policymaker in Washington, Rio, or Beijing, but it represents a serious challenge to the conventional wisdom of international...