Zbigniew Brzezinski

Capsule Review
May/June
2012
Walter Russell Mead

In this crisp and stimulating book, Brzezinski speculates on the dangers that could result from the decline of the United States and offers his prescriptions to restore American leadership in a changing world.

Essay
Jan/Feb
2012
Zbigniew Brzezinski

As the United States looks ahead, it faces two central challenges in foreign policy, writes a former national security adviser: enlarging the zone of prosperity and democracy in the West while balancing the rise of China and allaying the fears of the United States’ Asian allies. Neither challenge can be addressed in isolation -- for today, the fates of the West and the East are intertwined.

Essay
Jan/Feb
2010
Zbigniew Brzezinski

Barack Obama’s foreign policy has generated more expectations than strategic breakthroughs. Three urgent issues -- the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, Iran’s nuclear ambitions, and the Afghan-Pakistani challenge -- will test his ability to significantly change U.S. policy.

News & Events
Zbigniew Brzezinski, James F. Hoge, Jr.

A discussion with Zbigniew Brzezinski on the future of NATO and other foreign policy challenges facing the Obama administration.

Video
Zbigniew Brzezinski

Watch Zbigniew Brzezinski offer insight into his recent Foreign Affairs article An Agenda for NATO.

Essay
Sep/Oct
2009
Zbigniew Brzezinski

In the course of its 60 years, NATO has united the West, secured Europe, and ended the Cold War. What next?

Roundtable
Stephen Peter Rosen, Eliot A. Cohen, Henry Rosovsky, and Zbigniew Brzezinski

Eulogies delivered at the memorial service for Samuel P. Huntington, Memorial Church, Cambridge, Massachusetts, April 22, 2009.

Review Essay
May/June
2009
Zbigniew Brzezinski

Richard Haass’ perceptive insider’s account of the policymaking leading up to both Iraq wars -- one a "war of choice," the other a "war of necessity" -- holds key lessons for future U.S. leadership in the Middle East and beyond.

Capsule Review
Mar/Apr
2009
Walter Russell Mead

Readers looking for clues as to how the Obama administration might seek to reposition U.S. foreign policy could can consult this book for a wide-ranging and candid presentation of some of the principal themes in American political thought at this critical moment.

Essay
Sep/Oct
1997
Zbigniew Brzezinski

Eurasia is the axial supercontinent. It is home to most of the world's politically assertive states and all the historical pretenders to global power. Accounting for 75 percent of the world's population, 60 percent of its output, and 75 percent of its energy resources, Eurasia's potential power overshadows even America's. For these reasons, the United States should begin paving the way to a transcontinental security system that will ensure Eurasia's future is more peaceful than its past.

Essay
May/Jun
1997
Zbigniew Brzezinski, Brent Scowcroft and Richard Murphy

Every president since Richard Nixon has recognized that ensuring stability in the Persian Gulf is a vital U.S. interest. In its first term, the Clinton administration attempted to deal with the twin dangers of Iran and Iraq through a strategy of "dual containment" that kept both countries boxed in with economic sanctions and military monitoring. Dual containment, however, is more a slogan than a strategy, and far too blunt an instrument to serve American interests in the Middle East. The United States must employ a more nuanced approach, keeping the straitjacket on Saddam while seeking improved relations with Iran.

Essay
Jan/Feb
1995
Zbigniew Brzezinski

The Clinton administration needs to lead Europe and expand NATO, but without harming ties with Russia. Washington should dispel the ambiguity created by its current waffling. The president must take a two-track approach: start the process of accepting Central European states into NATO by spelling out criteria for membership and sign a global security treaty with Russia. To make it work, Germany and Poland will have to reconcile, the West and Russia will have to soothe Ukraine, and the problem of the Baltics will have to be finessed. Only American leadership can help create a wider, safer Europe for the next century.

Essay
Mar/Apr
1994
Zbigniew Brzezinski

Rosy scenarios of a democratic, economically revitalized Russia are the basis for the U.S. partnership with Boris Yeltsin. Such views hinge on the assumption that Russia wants peace with its neighbors. But Russia cannot be both a democracy and an empire, and it now seems to be choosing the ­latter. In the "near abroad," the politically powerful Russian military hungrily eyes breakaway republics. By heaping aid on a corrupt economy and deferring to wounded pride, the United States will legitimize a Russian sphere of influence in Europe's east and forfeit the fruits of its Cold War victory. A more even-handed diplomacy and distribution of aid among the former Soviet republics could temper Russia's imperial impulse.

Essay
Fall
1992
Zbigniew Brzezinski

Overview of the Cold War era, assessing its phases, US-Soviet strategies and tactics, and opportunities missed by both sides. The West faces the collapse not merely of Soviet power, but of "the great Russian empire, which laster for more than three hundred years". The West's objectives should now be to encourage the emergence of a "truly post-imperial Russia" and the "stable consolidation of the newly-independent non-Russian states".

Essay
Fall
1991
Zbigniew Brzezinski

Instead of being a participant in the balance-of-power competition between nations, the USA must henceforward, in recognition of the post-cold War environment of 'pragmatic trans-nationalism', develop a foreign policy concept which involves a greater degree of co-operation with security partners.

Essay
Winter
1989
Zbigniew Brzezinski

The collapse of communism across Eastern Europe has created the dangers of nationalist competition and chauvinism. The West should encourage (1) the former 'satellites' to develop pluralist constitutions and to move towards closer association with the EC (2) "the eventual transformation of the Soviet Union -- which in reality is a great Russian empire -- into a genuine voluntary confederation or commonwealth". See also 1990:00167.

Essay
Spring
1988
Zbigniew Brzezinski

Seeks to transmute claims of US imperial decline into an agenda for its future role. Strategic doctrine should stress flexibility and the control of space, likened to control of the seas in times past. Areas of paramount geopolitical importance are (1) Eastern Europe and Germany (2) the Middle East (3) Central America, where a combination of anti-Yanqui nationalism and demography may even 'prompt a mood of panic' in the USA. The global role needs to be re-defined against parallels with other declining empires (Rome, Turkey) but also against lack of a successor -- "the Soviet Union will remain internally too weak to become a partner for peace and externally too strong to be satisfied with the status quo". Calls in particular for the upgrading to world status of the US-Japanese relationship -- 'Amerippon'. President Carter's security adviser, 1977-81. An excerpt was republished in 'Eastern Europe: a crisis in need of management' IHT 12 Apr 1988 p4.