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The Centre for Grand Strategy welcomes you to attend a book launch with author Prof William Inboden of the recently published book The Peacemaker: Ronald Reagan, The Cold War and the world on the brink. 'The Peacemaker' was named one of the Wall Street Journal’s best political books of 2022 and is a masterful account of how Ronald Reagan and his national security team confronted the Soviets, reduced the nuclear threat, won the Cold War, and supported the spread of freedom around the world.

Dr Charlie Laderman will join the panel with Prof Inboden and Martina Bernardini will chair the Q&A session. Following the discussion, CGS welcomes you to attend a drinks reception.

You can register for tickets here.


About the book:

With decades of hindsight, the peaceful end of the Cold War seems a foregone conclusion. But in the early 1980s, most experts believed the Soviet Union was strong, stable, and would last into the next century. Ronald Reagan entered the White House with no certainty of what would happen next, only an overriding faith in democracy and an abiding belief that Soviet communism—and the threat of nuclear war—must end.

The Peacemaker reveals how Reagan’s White House waged the Cold War while managing multiple crises around the globe. From the emergence of global terrorism, wars in the Middle East, the rise of Japan, and the awakening of China to proxy conflicts in Latin America, Africa, and Asia, Reagan’s team oversaw the worldwide expansion of democracy, globalization, free trade, and the information revolution. Yet no issue was greater than the Cold War standoff with the Soviet Union. As president, Reagan remade the four-decades-old policy of containment and challenged the Soviets in an arms race and ideological contest that pushed them toward economic and political collapse, all while extending an olive branch of diplomacy as he sought a peaceful end to the conflict.


About the speakers:

William Inboden is Executive Director and William Powers, Jr. Chair at the Clements Center for National Security at the University of Texas-Austin. He also serves as Associate Professor at the LBJ School of Public Affairs, Distinguished Scholar at the Robert S. Strauss Center for International Security and Law, and Editor-in-Chief of the Texas National Security Review. Inboden’s other current roles include Associate with the National Intelligence Council, member of the CIA’s Historical Advisory Panel, member of the State Department’s Historical Advisory Council, Senior Fellow with the Trinity Forum, Steering Committee for the Reagan Institute Strategy Group, and member of the Advisory Board for the Vandenberg Coalition. Previously he served as Senior Director for Strategic Planning on the National Security Council at the White House, where he worked on a range of foreign policy issues including the National Security Strategy, strategic forecasting, democracy and governance, contingency planning, counter-radicalization, and multilateral institutions and initiatives. Inboden also worked at the Department of State as a Member of the Policy Planning Staff and a Special Advisor in the Office of International Religious Freedom, and has worked as a staff member in both the United States Senate and the House of Representatives.

Charlie Laderman is Senior Lecturer in International History. He is part of the core team responsible for directing the Centre for Grand Strategy. Before joining KCL, he was a research fellow at Peterhouse, University of Cambridge, where he remains a senior research associate. In 2016–17, he was a Harrington Faculty Fellow at the University of Texas, Austin and in 2021-22, he was a Research Fellow at the Hoover Institution, Stanford University. His latest book is Hitler’s American Gamble: Pearl Harbor and German’'s March to Global War (Basic Books, 2021). Co-written with Brendan Simms, it explores the most crucial period in 20th-century diplomatic history, the days between Japan’s assault on Pearl Harbor and Adolf Hitler’s declaration of war on the United States. It was a New York Times Editor’s Choice and has been shortlisted for the Duke of Wellington Medal for Military History. It has also been reviewed in The Wall Street Journal, Guardian, The Times, Daily Telegraph, New Statesman and Foreign Affairs.

Martina Bernardni is a PhD Candidate at the Department of War Studies at King’s College London. She has been awarded the Leverhulme Scholarship 'Interrogating Visions of a Post-Western World: Interdisciplinary and Interregional Perspectives on the Future in a Changing International Order'. Her research focuses on the history of US foreign policy towards China, particularly on the role of China in US President George Bush’s Grand Strategy for a post-Cold War World Order. She is an alumna of the School of Politics founded by former Italian Prime Minister Enrico Letta, and she holds a first-class honors Master’s degree in International Studies from Roma Tre University, where she also completed her BA in Political Science and International Relations. Throughout her studies, she won different grants to study and do research at the University of Montpellier, the University of Copenhagen, and the University of Montréal, which awarded her with an additional scholarship of the Confucius Institute in Québec to complete a teaching-and-study experience in China.


At this event

Martina Bernardini

Research Associate

Charlie Laderman

Senior Lecturer in International History