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The Dangerous First Year

National Security at the Start of a New Presidency
Edited by William I. Hitchcock and Melvyn P. Leffler


BUY Ebook · 48 pp. · ISBN 9780813939605 · $5.95 · Oct 2016

"You’ve got to give it all you can that first year.... You’ve got just one year when they treat you right, and before they start worrying about themselves.... So, you’ve got one year."--Lyndon B. Johnson, January 1965

In an increasingly polarized political environment, the first year of the new president’s term will be especially challenging. With a fresh mandate, however, the first year also offers opportunities that may never come again. The First Year Project is a fascinating initiative by the Miller Center of the University of Virginia that brings together top scholars on the American presidency and experienced officials to explore the first twelve months of past administrations, and draw practical lessons from that history, as we prepare to inaugurate a new president in January 2017.

This project is the basis for a new series of digital shorts published as Miller Center Studies on the Presidency. Addressing the theme of national security, this debut volume examines the first-year experiences of five previous administrations, including those of John F. Kennedy, Ronald Reagan, George H. W. Bush, Bill Clinton, and George W. Bush. Presented as specially priced collections published exclusively in an ebook format, these timely examinations recognize the experiences of past presidents as an invaluable resource that can edify and instruct the incoming president.

Contributors: Hal Brands, Duke University * Jeffery Engel, Southern Methodist University * Michèle Flournoy, Center for a New American Security * Melvyn P. Leffler, University of Virginia * Marc Selverstone, University of Virginia * Jeremi Suri, University of Texas at Austin * Philip Zelikow, University of Virginia

Miller Center Studies on the Presidency

About the Author: 

William I. Hitchcock is Professor of History at the University of Virginia and Director of Academic Programs at the Miller Center. Melvyn P. Leffler is Edward Stettinius Professor of History at the University of Virginia.

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