many publications are putting out their year-end lists of notable books. these nonfiction titles were included in the economist's books of the year. in coolidge, amity. >> laze recounts the tenure of america's andth president. ian buruma presents a global history of the end of world war ii in "year zero." in "margaret thatcher: the authorized biography volume one," charles moore, a reporter for the telegraph, recounts the late british prime minister's personal life and early career. in "my promised land: the triumph and tragedy of israel," ari -- [inaudible] presents a history of israel. margaret mcmillan, professor of international history at the university of oxford, recalls the events that led to world war were in europe in "the war that ended peace."
in "lean in: women, work and the will to lead," sheryl sandberg with, the chief operating officer at facebook, gives her thoughts on women and leadership. for an extended list and links to various other publications' 2013 notable book selections, visit booktv's web site, booktv.org. >> and now joining us on booktv is the author of this book, "the global vatican." ambassador francis rooney is the author, forward by ambassador john negroponte. barred rooney -- ambassador rooney, is the vatican a political organization? >> i think every civic organization is to some degree or another political. so one of the great things about the holy c is they're not a political organization like a government, like the united states or a secular government. they don't need to take credit for what they do. and some of the things i try to write in the book that make them
uniquely important in the world in deploying their soft power is they don't have to take credit. so they can work in the shadows behind the scenes. it makes them very effective. >> what are some of those issues that the vatican works on, as you say, behind the scenes? >> well, for example, in 2006 we worked quietly to unify the christians in lebanon to make sure that the old tripartheid coalition of jews, shiite and christians was kept in place. and it worked. it stabilized lebanon for a few more years. >> is it important for the u.s. to have an ambassador to the vatican, to the holy c as you serve? >> that's one of the may not points -- main points of the book. it's very important. perhaps the only southern in the world that has -- sovereign in the world that has the soft power they have without having a hegemonic agenda or territory could have great value to a country like the united states which is so aligned with their fundamental principles everyone
inalienable lights of man and religious freedom. we're natural partners. >> do other countries work closely with the vatican? >> yes, peter. 179 countries have diplomatic relations, and 30 of them are islamic countries. >> and what kind of work to -- do they do together? >> well, the islamic countries, many of them are trying to work to promote interreligious dialogue and find solutions to radical islam. many of the secular european countries are historic monarchies that have had relationships with the holy c for centuries. in latin america with the strong number of catholics in all parts of latin america and the intense social issues with the holy -- the church is deeply involved in, there's a very strong relationship. >> in your view, ambassador rooney, has the, has the vatican ever overstepped its bounds as a religious organization into the political? >> well, probably shouldn't
answer some of the issues that came up in the two bush campaigns in the united states that were highly controversial about the intersection of theology and politics. my focus as a diplomat is to show the way the holy c can interact with other nations and engage in the affairs of state. >> what's your background? how did you get to that position? >> well, i was a political appointee by george bush, and i've known george bush a long time. he's a great, great man and great friend, and so when i had the opportunity to serve in his administration, i certainly wanted to do it. had no idea he would pick me for this particular mission, although i've done a lot of commissions and special missions and different things both at the state level and the federal level in my career. >> the global vatican is the name of the book, and the author is ambassador francis rooney. this is booktv on c-span2. >> you're watching c-span2 with politics and public affairs.
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