In Henry Kissinger’s book ‘Diplomacy’ on page 136, chapter 5 when talking about how the Germany Bismarck had created was a society that could not function without him or men like him Kissinger says “Where Bismarck failed was in having doomed his society to a style of policy which could only have been carried on had a great man emerged in every generation. This is rarely the case, and the institutions of imperial Germany militated against it.” The overarching argument of Kissinger makes sense to me except for the one phrase on the institutions of Imperial Germany making the emergence of skilled and great men every generation impossible. A large part of the existence of Prussia up to and after Bismarck was on devoted and incredibly smart men like the succession of Frederick’s which ensured Prussia’s survival as a second rate European power in contrast to Britain, France, and Russia. So what does Kissinger think changed to mean great men could no longer emerge in imperial Germany after Otto Von Bismarck? I’ve searched the book and can’t find an answer, if anyone could help it would be great. Hope this makes sense, cheers!

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