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Al Haig and the Reagan Assassination Attempt — “I’m in charge here”

Loy Henderson, Mr. Foreign Service

Hear Ye, Hear Ye! It’s Poor Richard’s Podcasts

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iTunesFor a more personal — and often more dramatic — way to experience ADST’s oral history collection, try listening to one of our podcasts!

Click the link to Podbean or iTunes, where you will find our growing selection of podcasts. Such as Eileen Malloy, talking about skinny dipping for her country. Renowned chef and Foreign Service spouse Julia Child and actress Kathleen Turner reminiscing about their experiences with the Foreign Service. Richard Erickson discussing the North Korean seizure of the USS Pueblo.  And more to come!







Highlighted Oral History: Donald Bandler

bandlerDonald Bandler, born in Philadelphia, started his professional career as a teacher in Annapolis and Nigeria and considered becoming a photojournalist before joining the Foreign Service. At the State Department, he worked on the Policy Planning staff, in Congressional Relations and as Counselor to the National Security Adviser for the 1999 NATO summit. He served as a political officer in Cameroon and Bonn, Deputy Chief of Mission in Paris and Ambassador to Cyprus. He continued to enjoy photography as a hobby, and published a book of his photos entitled A Roving Eye on Cyprus.

Here's an excerpt:  [When he was a teacher in Nigeria living in the small town of Bida] "We used up our two official trips, so we were looking for a third. I went to the head master, the principal, and said, 'I am going to take the Foreign Service exam at our consulate in Kaduna. Can I have a special exemption to make this trip?' He got it cleared and I went up there, went to the Consulate in Kaduna, and took the Foreign Service exam. Both Ambassador Pete Chaveas and I remember him administering the exam. We were both looking good, he in a suit and me in my dashiki. By then I had met a few people from the embassy. After taking the exam we became friendly with one of the young Foreign Service Officers in Kaduna. He came to visit us in Bida. He brought us some American food (peanut butter, canned goods). He was rather shocked by our sub-standard living quarters and ended up staying for only a few hours. We had two dogs, Yawa and Kai, and we had a housekeeper. We thought we were living rather luxuriously."

To see the entire list of oral histories, please follow the link.


Inside Foggy Bottom

IMG_9016FSI at 70: Future Forward: A History of the Foreign Service Institute

To celebrate the 70th Anniversary of the founding of the Foreign Service Institute, the Association for Diplomatic Studies and Training has published a book by Steven Alan Honley, former editor of The Foreign Service Journal, that focuses on the challenges overcome in creating the National Foreign Affairs Training Center. The book is available as a Kindle e-book and in hard copy on Amazon. To find it, simply go to Amazon’s website and search for FSI at 70: Future Forward: A History of the Foreign Service Institute.

Excerpt:  "In October 1989, the Department of State was able to take over 72 acres of what still looked like a campus, with the main, yellow-brick building intact. We also kept the girls' gymnasium and two Sears Roebuck prefabricated cottages by Route 50 that are now considered historic.

The departing Army took with them a decorative World War II cannon, and left behind a ghost named Mary. Mary, a student at Arlington Hall, had been repeatedly sighted in the upper stairwell of a wing of the main building that we have now torn down. She had an unhappy and indiscreet love affair, and roamed the halls in a white gown just about where we are going to locate the Overseas Briefing Center."  Brandon H. Grove, FSI Director 1988-1992


ben_cool (2)Navigating this Website

The Association for Diplomatic Studies and Training (ADST) is an independent nonprofit organization founded in 1986. Located at the State Department’s George P. Shultz National Foreign Affairs Training Center in Arlington, Virginia, ADST’s mission is to capture, preserve, and share the experiences of America’s diplomats to enrich the professional knowledge of practitioners and strengthen public appreciation of diplomacy’s contribution to America’s security. It achieves this mission by recording the oral histories of diplomatic practitioners, helping them prepare and publish books and memoirs, contributing to the development of case studies, supporting the work of the Foreign Service Institute, and taking educational programs to citizens of all ages.

Over the past quarter century ADST has completed more than 2000 oral histories, also posted on the Library of Congress website. To read the oral histories, please go to the top of this page. Click on the third link, “Oral History,” and the drop-down menu will take you to the Oral History page, Country Readers (with excerpts about specific countries), Moments in U.S. Diplomatic History (highlights of the oral histories), Fascinating Figures and more. You can identify specific topics, people, or countries mentioned in the Moments using Google Search. If you access the Moments from the drop-down menu, you can also search using categories and tags.

Since 1996, ADST’s publishing program has led to publication of 94 books––61 in the Diplomats and Diplomacy Series and 33 in the Memoirs and Occasional Papers Series. To read about the books, click on the fifth link, “Publications,” at the top.

To meet ADST’s staff and Board of Directors, please look at the second link, “About ADST”.  “About ADST” will also tell you about ADST internships and how to apply for them. Explore!

Please consider supporting our vital work of interviewing, transcribing, editing, and archiving U.S. diplomatic oral history by making a donation to ADST or volunteer to be interviewed or to assist ADST in other ways.



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