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The Reckoning by David Halberstam

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40. AMAYA ENDS AN ERA

IT HAD BEEN ACKNOWLEDGED at MITI early on that Naohiro Amaya understood the Americans and their politics better than almost anyone else in the ministry and had a highly refined sense of what, in any serious confrontation, America’s most basic positions really were. At the same time, respect for him among the Americans steadily increased. There was a consensus that he played fewer games with them during important negotiations than other Japanese and did not insult their intelligence by poor-mouthing and exaggerating Japan’s vulnerability. He made sure he understood their political realities as well as his own. Furthermore, unlike most Japanese, who seemed eager to gather information but reluctant to volunteer it, he was willing ...

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