Diplomacy's Dark Hours

Seldom have envoys and embassies faced so many hazards—and catcalls

"My slowly creeping doubt is that we may be contemplating the beginning of the end of diplomacy—not as an art, which we will always need, but as an institution."

So warned Italy's Roberto Ducci last month, retiring as Rome's Ambassador to London after 42 years in his country's foreign service. Indeed, seldom before in modern history has diplomacy been so dangerous, or so seemingly discredited, a calling. The clear and ugly danger is represented by terrorists who look on...

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