Join Admiral Philip S. Dur, former Director of Navy Strategy and Commander of the U.S. Navy’s Sixth Fleet Battle Force, as he discusses the making of foreign policy and grand strategy in a changing world. Admiral Dur served on the National Security Council staff in the Reagan White House and later as Senior Aide to the Secretary of the Navy. He has over a decade’s worth of experience in the domestic and international business sectors.
A Tireless Troublemaker: A. Philip Randolph and the Integration of the Armed Forces
Andrew Kersten, Professor of History, University of Wisconsin-Green Bay
A. Philip Randolph was one of the most influential civil rights and labor leaders in the first half of the 20th Century. With accomplishments ranging from the establishment of the Brotherhood of Sleeping Car Porters to the creation of the Fair Employment Practice Committee, Randolph found a tremendous challenge in the integration of the Armed Forces. Learn the story of how this ‘tireless troublemaker’ lobbied the Executive Branch to integrate the Armed Forces, which President Truman finally did in 1948.
Although common wisdom and historical scholarship both assume that “big government” gained its foothold in the United States under the auspices of the New Deal during the Great Depression, in fact it was World War II that accomplished this feat. Warfare, not welfare, provided the broad and durable foundation for the legitimacy of the powerful, centralized government that ruled both America and the “free world” from 1941 onward. Through mass participation in military service, war work, rationing, price control, income taxation and ownership of the national debt (in the form of war bonds), ordinary Americans learned to live with and accept a national government that by 1945 dwarfed the New Deal even at the height of its spending in the late 1930s. This talk discusses the ways in which the mobilization for total war habituated Americans to big government, producing a paradoxical mixture of Americanism and entitlement that would define—and constrain—national political culture for decades.
Empire for Liberty: A History of American Imperialism from Benjamin Franklin to Paul Wolfowitz
Richard H. Immerman, Professor of History and Director, Center for the Study of Force and Diplomacy, Temple University
Benjamin Franklin, John Quincy Adams, William Henry Seward, Henry Cabot Lodge, John Foster Dulles, and Paul Wolfowitz—these six exceptional figures all used the rhetoric of liberty to further their imperial ambitions, and that the quest for empire has guided the nation’s architects from the very beginning. From the founding of the republic to the Global War on Terror, the influence of each individual arose from a keen sensitivity to the concerns of his times; how the trajectory of American empire was relentless if not straight; and how these shrewd and powerful individuals shaped their rhetoric about liberty to suit their needs.
Jeremi Suri, E. Gordon Fox Professor of History and Director, European Union Center for Excellence, University of Wisconsin
St. Norbert College – Hall of Fine Arts, Walter Theatre, 315 Third St., De Pere
This lecture will examine the enduring legacies of the Vietnam War for American society. Professor Suri will trace how the war continues to influence domestic politics, foreign policy, and popular culture. What have we learned in the thirty-five years since the end of the Vietnam War? Professor Suri will address the most important historical lessons for American society in a troubled twenty-first century world. A book signing for Wisconsin Vietnam War Stories: Our Veterans Remember will follow the lecture.
Andrew Bacevich, Professor of International Relations and History, Boston University
Join us for this special event with Vietnam Veteran and noted scholar Dr. Andrew Bacevich. In this lecture, he will describe the national security consensus that has informed US policy since World War II, and why this consensus persists. He will make the case that the consensus has become antithetical to the nation’s well-being and should be abandoned. .
Nicholas Thompson, Author
Only two Americans held positions of great influence throughout the Cold War; ironically, they were the chief advocates for the opposing strategies for winning—and surviving—that harrowing conflict. Both men came to power during World War II, reached their professional peaks during the Cold War’s most frightening moments, and fought epic political battles that spanned decades. Yet despite their very different views, Paul Nitze and George Kennan dined together, attended the weddings of each other’s children, and remained good friends all their lives. Nitze’s grandson, Nicholas Thompson, weaves a fascinating narrative that follows these two rivals and friends from the beginning of the Cold War to its end, meanwhile telling the story of our nation during the most dangerous half century in history.
Dr. Richard H. Zeitlin Distinguished Lecture Series
Wisconsin Veterans Museum
Education Center, second floor
30 W. Mifflin St. (on the Capitol Square)
Spring 2010 Lecture Series: Wisconsin Veterans Museum
A ll events are free and open to the public. For more information, contact Jeff Kollath, Curator of Programs and Exhibitions at (608) 261-0541.