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Diplomat-Novelist Matthew Palmer Discusses His International Thriller "Enemy Of The Good"


This encore program was originally aired in December of 2017.

The world of foreign diplomacy is a secretive one, and for those of us on the outside, it is also largely inaccessible. Veteran diplomat and author Matthew Palmer pulls back the curtains on this hidden world with suspense novels that offer an insider’s perspective on conflicts and cultures in far corners of the globe. And he’s done it again in his new book, titled Enemy of the Good.

The action in Enemy of the Good takes place in Kyrgyzstan in Central Asia during a critical juncture in the country’s relations with the United States.  The story centers on a second generation Foreign Service officer named Kate Hollister, a clandestine mission, and a difficult and potentially deadly moral dilemma. The book is a page turner, certainly. But it also offers readers a rich and insightful account of a country we seldom hear about in the news from a career diplomat who has firsthand knowledge of U.S. international relations.

Matthew Palmer is a 25-plus year veteran of the U.S. Foreign Service and currently serves as the director for multilateral affairs in the State Department’s Bureau of Asian and Pacific Affairs. He is a life member of the Council on Foreign Relations, and has worked as a diplomat all over the world.

Mr. Palmer was a guest on our show last year to discuss one of his earlier novels, The Wolf of Sarajevo.