Walter Laqueur was born 88 years ago in the German town Breslau, which is since 1945 now Wroclaw in Poland. In 1938 he emigrated to Palestine. He was co-founder and editor of the Journal of Contemporary History in London and the Washington Quarterly. Professor Laqueur taught at the universities of Georgetown, Chicago, Harvard, John Hopkins, Brandeis, and Tel Aviv. He chaired the International Research Council of the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington D.C. for a long time, where he is living. See his fascinating curriculum vitae here.
Walter Laqueur has been writing, teaching and acting as a policy adviser over sixty years in three continents, primarily in the field of twentieth century history and politics. In this engaging memoir, Laqueur focuses on the political and historical events that have shaped his thinking and inspired his intellectual work.
He describes growing up in Nazi Germany; discusses Marxism, the Soviet Union, and the part he played in Cold War politics; and reflects on the image his generation had of Zionism, Israel, and the Middle East. Walter Laqueur shares his appraisal of Beltway politics and think tanks, concluding with his views on guerrilla warfare, terrorism, and the future of Europe.
Walter Laqueur has resolved the tension between being a highly respected historian, normally arms length from events themselves, and having been an active observer and player during 'his' twentieth century. With the knowledge and experience of his long life, he deserves the title of an 'old wise man'.