For the first time in his fifty-plus years as a writer, psychiatrist, and intel operative; Dr. Steve Pieczenik writes the truth about his experiences around the world. This book covers the early life of a refugee who played classical piano and went to Cornell at the tender age of sixteen. The reader comes to understand how the experiences of this young man shaped his ability to resolve international hostage situations, subdue corrupt political leaders, and manage the grueling demands of running a psychiatric ward of insane killers.
Each of the thirty-two chapters details a particular experience or country that the Dr. encountered in his various assignments in the military or state department. The reader gets 1st person details on famous figures in international politics and in the institutes of higher learning. The Dr. reveals the close relationship between academia and the Intel community.
Some of the nation-states covered in detail include Iran, Syria, Cambodia and South Korea. The Dr. has been around the world several times and each time he “visits” a country, it’s not as a tourist, but as an observer and infiltrator of the country’s politics and culture. These chapters include historical insights on countries that the average American rarely visits. This aspect of the book should appeal to students of foreign governments as well as international travelers.
As one continues reading through this book, it becomes apparent that this work is that of an experienced writer of novels, screenplays, and plays. Each chapter tells a story or a narrative about a particular international leader or the progression of a violent conflict within a country. We see the protagonist versus the antagonist in each historical moment. The hostilities are documented and usually resolved in part or in entirety by the good Dr. There is no doubt why the Dr. had a long successful writing partnership with the master of the political thriller, Tom Clancy. The Dr. helped create the Tom Clancy franchise that lives on today despite the passing of its eponymous namesake.
The book wraps up with the more recent years of the Doctor’s career as he becomes a successful and widely popular Internet “truther.” Radio, podcasts, and social media—with an emphasis on short Youtube videos—are now the tools of whom some would call the “real Jack Ryan.” This new toolbox has also come with a price, such as FBI subpoenas, censoring on social media, and falling out with some big media personalities. Yet, the Dr. is no stranger to struggle and threats to his safety; it's just another day in the life of an American Warrior in Crises.