With support from the University of Richmond

History News Network

History News Network puts current events into historical perspective. Subscribe to our newsletter for new perspectives on the ways history continues to resonate in the present. Explore our archive of thousands of original op-eds and curated stories from around the web. Join us to learn more about the past, now.

Kimberly Kagan: Wife of Frederick Kagan to monitor plan her husband devised

Kimberly Kagan, Yale Ph.D., has been appointed by the Weekly Standard to provide readers with a fortnightly progress report on"the surge."

Her credentials are stellar. This is how she is described on the website of the Center for Peace and Security Studies, where she is an adjunct:

Kimberly Kagan is an Adjunct Professor in the Security Studies Program and a Senior Fellow at CPASS. Dr. Kagan previously held an Olin Postdoctoral Fellowship in Military History at Yale International Security Studies in 2004-2005 and was a National Security Fellow at Harvard’s Olin Institute for Strategic Studies in 2002-2003. She served as Assistant Professor of History at the United States Military Academy from 2000-2005 and has subsequently taught at Yale and American University. Dr. Kagan’s current research addresses historical empires and contemporary international relations. She has edited The Beginnings of Empires (under contract with Harvard University Press), a collection of new essays that explore the process by which powerful states have become empires. Dr. Kagan’s first book, The Eye of Command (University of Michigan Press, 2006), critiques “face of battle” military history by analyzing the battle narratives of Roman soldier-historians such as Julius Caesar. Her next book, Rome and America: Grand Strategic Lessons for Global Powers is under contract with Encounter Books and will draw useful lessons from Roman history that policy makers can apply to contemporary United States foreign policy. She received her Ph.D. in Ancient History from Yale University.

But she is not exactly a disinterested observer, as blogger Andrew Sullivan has complained:

I vouched for Kimberly Kagan's academic credentials in linking to her assessment of the progress of the"surge" for the Weekly Standard. I should have disclosed that Kagan is the wife of Frederick Kagan, the principal author of the surge; and his brother is Bob Kagan, another pro-surge advocate and editor at the Weekly Standard, and they're both sons of Donald Kagan, who is also a neoconservative intellectual. More to the point: Kimberly Kagan is listed as one of the participants in her husband's research team that came up with the surge in the first place. So when the Weekly Standard decided to compile a regular report on the surge's progress, they picked the wife of the main author and one of the plan's original architects. And they never disclosed these relevant facts. So allow me.