Download high-resolution image
Listen to a clip from the audiobook
audio pause button
0:00
0:00

The Internationalists

The Fight to Restore American Foreign Policy After Trump

Listen to a clip from the audiobook
audio pause button
0:00
0:00
The inside story of Biden’s foreign policy team and their struggle to restore America’s global influence in the aftermath of Trump

When Joe Biden assumed the United States presidency, he brought with him a team of all-star talent, perhaps the most experienced ensemble of policy experts in modern U.S. history. Their mission: repair America’s damaged reputation abroad and decide the course of its global future.  

The challenges and risks could not have been greater. Around the world, adversaries were consolidating power, allies were drifting away, wars were raging, and climate change was accelerating, all while Russia was disrupting democracies and China was seeking to replace the U.S. as the world’s preeminent power. Now for the first time since World War II, the United States risked falling from its unrivaled position. If Biden and his team failed, it would likely mark the end of an American era and the rise of a fractured and autocratic world order.  

In The Internationalists, acclaimed national security reporter Alexander Ward takes us behind the scenes to reveal the struggle to enact a coherent and effective set of policies in a time of global crisis. Against the failure of Afghanistan and Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, Biden’s all-star team-of-rivals must band together against incredible odds. Their successes, and their failures, will decide not just Biden’s presidency. They will decide the very course of America’s global future. 

As The Best and The Brightest chronicled the smoke-filled rooms of the Kennedy Administration, and The Rise of The Vulcans detailed the inner workings of George Bush's war machine, The Internationalists takes readers behind the scenes as Joe Biden and his cabinet embark on some of the most ambitious foreign policy initiatives of any president since Richard M. Nixon. 

Thanks to rigorous reporting and sources in the rooms where it happened, Ward delivers the first draft of history, the first definitive, unvarnished account of the Biden Doctrine, from the Fall of Kabul to the Rise of Kiev.
“Superb.”
— Shane Harris, senior national security writer at The Washington Post and author of @War
 
“The most fulsome account of the Administration’s foreign policy - its rationale and the people implementing it.”
— Phil Mattingly, coanchor of CNN This Morning
 
“Stellar.”
— Steven A. Cook, author of False Dawn
 
“Vital for understanding President Biden’s foreign policy.”
— Mark Leon Goldberg, editor of UN Dispatch and host of Global Dispatches Podcast

“The most important book you’ll read on the Biden administration.”
Sean Illing, author of The Paradox of Democracy and host of “The Gray Area” podcast

"From one of the best reporters in Washington, this is the first behind-the-scenes account of the Biden Doctrine. Ward uses remarkable details to explore Biden's massively consequential foreign policy, a tenet shaped by one war the president was desperate to end and another that stunned the globe."
Jonathan Lemire, host of "Way Too Early" on MSNBC, White House Bureau Chief at Politico and author of The New York Times bestseller The Big Lie

The Internationalists offers a rapid-fire reported account of the world of challenges faced by President Biden and his administration as they sought to restore American global leadership at a time of tumult. The chapters on the botched U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan are a particular page-turner. Most importantly, the book recounts with newsy detail how an administration that came to office planning to focus on the long-term strategic threat posed by China ended up pivoting to deal with the consequences of Russia's full-scale invasion of Ukraine— the largest land war in Europe since World War II. The book is a testament to the virtues of having a dogged reporter on one of the most important beats in the world."
Susan Glasser, staff writer at The New Yorker, and co-author of The New York Times bestsellers The Man Who Ran Washington and The Divider

"The Internationalists is a deeply reported, propulsively written view inside the Biden administration's race to rebuild America's standing among allies and enemies alike. Alexander Ward has filled an enormous gap in our understanding of what goes on inside Washington's most important rooms. This is an essential read for anyone who cares about the wars in Afghanistan and Ukraine, and the United States' place in a complex, dangerous world." 
Mitchell Zuckoff, The New York Times bestselling author of 13 Hours and The Secret Gate

"A must-read for anyone who wants to know the true story of how American foreign policy is made."
Sen. Chris Murphy (D-Conn.), Senate Foreign Relations Committee member and author, The Violence Inside Us

"There are few reporters in America that can combine first-rate, granular reporting with the talent to weave it all together into a deft narrative that is impossible to put down. The Internationalists is a pivotal, behind-the-scenes look at the presidency of a man with more foreign-policy experience than any of his predecessors, who came into office with a national security dream team, intent on parking the problems and focusing on the strategic big picture — only to have God laugh at his plan. This book is an instant classic and an indispensable look at how the Biden administration has wielded American Power."
Julia Ioffe, founding partner of Puck

"An expert account. Simultaneously illuminating and painful.” 
Kirkus
© Aileen Beringer
Alexander Ward is a national security reporter at POLITICO and anchor of “National Security Daily.” Previously, Ward was the White House and national security reporter at Vox. He was an associate director in the Atlantic Council's Brent Scowcroft Center on International Security where he worked on military issues and U.S. foreign policy. He also wrote the #NatSec2016 newsletter for War on the Rocks where he covered the 2016 presidential election and the candidates' views on national security. He lives in Washington, D.C. View titles by Alexander Ward

About

The inside story of Biden’s foreign policy team and their struggle to restore America’s global influence in the aftermath of Trump

When Joe Biden assumed the United States presidency, he brought with him a team of all-star talent, perhaps the most experienced ensemble of policy experts in modern U.S. history. Their mission: repair America’s damaged reputation abroad and decide the course of its global future.  

The challenges and risks could not have been greater. Around the world, adversaries were consolidating power, allies were drifting away, wars were raging, and climate change was accelerating, all while Russia was disrupting democracies and China was seeking to replace the U.S. as the world’s preeminent power. Now for the first time since World War II, the United States risked falling from its unrivaled position. If Biden and his team failed, it would likely mark the end of an American era and the rise of a fractured and autocratic world order.  

In The Internationalists, acclaimed national security reporter Alexander Ward takes us behind the scenes to reveal the struggle to enact a coherent and effective set of policies in a time of global crisis. Against the failure of Afghanistan and Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, Biden’s all-star team-of-rivals must band together against incredible odds. Their successes, and their failures, will decide not just Biden’s presidency. They will decide the very course of America’s global future. 

As The Best and The Brightest chronicled the smoke-filled rooms of the Kennedy Administration, and The Rise of The Vulcans detailed the inner workings of George Bush's war machine, The Internationalists takes readers behind the scenes as Joe Biden and his cabinet embark on some of the most ambitious foreign policy initiatives of any president since Richard M. Nixon. 

Thanks to rigorous reporting and sources in the rooms where it happened, Ward delivers the first draft of history, the first definitive, unvarnished account of the Biden Doctrine, from the Fall of Kabul to the Rise of Kiev.

Reviews

“Superb.”
— Shane Harris, senior national security writer at The Washington Post and author of @War
 
“The most fulsome account of the Administration’s foreign policy - its rationale and the people implementing it.”
— Phil Mattingly, coanchor of CNN This Morning
 
“Stellar.”
— Steven A. Cook, author of False Dawn
 
“Vital for understanding President Biden’s foreign policy.”
— Mark Leon Goldberg, editor of UN Dispatch and host of Global Dispatches Podcast

“The most important book you’ll read on the Biden administration.”
Sean Illing, author of The Paradox of Democracy and host of “The Gray Area” podcast

"From one of the best reporters in Washington, this is the first behind-the-scenes account of the Biden Doctrine. Ward uses remarkable details to explore Biden's massively consequential foreign policy, a tenet shaped by one war the president was desperate to end and another that stunned the globe."
Jonathan Lemire, host of "Way Too Early" on MSNBC, White House Bureau Chief at Politico and author of The New York Times bestseller The Big Lie

The Internationalists offers a rapid-fire reported account of the world of challenges faced by President Biden and his administration as they sought to restore American global leadership at a time of tumult. The chapters on the botched U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan are a particular page-turner. Most importantly, the book recounts with newsy detail how an administration that came to office planning to focus on the long-term strategic threat posed by China ended up pivoting to deal with the consequences of Russia's full-scale invasion of Ukraine— the largest land war in Europe since World War II. The book is a testament to the virtues of having a dogged reporter on one of the most important beats in the world."
Susan Glasser, staff writer at The New Yorker, and co-author of The New York Times bestsellers The Man Who Ran Washington and The Divider

"The Internationalists is a deeply reported, propulsively written view inside the Biden administration's race to rebuild America's standing among allies and enemies alike. Alexander Ward has filled an enormous gap in our understanding of what goes on inside Washington's most important rooms. This is an essential read for anyone who cares about the wars in Afghanistan and Ukraine, and the United States' place in a complex, dangerous world." 
Mitchell Zuckoff, The New York Times bestselling author of 13 Hours and The Secret Gate

"A must-read for anyone who wants to know the true story of how American foreign policy is made."
Sen. Chris Murphy (D-Conn.), Senate Foreign Relations Committee member and author, The Violence Inside Us

"There are few reporters in America that can combine first-rate, granular reporting with the talent to weave it all together into a deft narrative that is impossible to put down. The Internationalists is a pivotal, behind-the-scenes look at the presidency of a man with more foreign-policy experience than any of his predecessors, who came into office with a national security dream team, intent on parking the problems and focusing on the strategic big picture — only to have God laugh at his plan. This book is an instant classic and an indispensable look at how the Biden administration has wielded American Power."
Julia Ioffe, founding partner of Puck

"An expert account. Simultaneously illuminating and painful.” 
Kirkus

Author

© Aileen Beringer
Alexander Ward is a national security reporter at POLITICO and anchor of “National Security Daily.” Previously, Ward was the White House and national security reporter at Vox. He was an associate director in the Atlantic Council's Brent Scowcroft Center on International Security where he worked on military issues and U.S. foreign policy. He also wrote the #NatSec2016 newsletter for War on the Rocks where he covered the 2016 presidential election and the candidates' views on national security. He lives in Washington, D.C. View titles by Alexander Ward