The Wise Men of Foreign Affairs: The History of the Council on Foreign Relations

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The Wise Men of Foreign Affairs: The History of the Council on Foreign Relations

By Robert D. Schulzinger
Columbia University Press, 1984
326 pp. $27.50
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This fair, scholarly and readable book illuminates the origin and history (to 1980) of the Council and places the organization in the larger context of the shifting ideas of its members, and the foreign policy elite generally, about the place of the United States in the world. The author blends information gleaned from the Council's archives with a close analysis of its publications and a sure grasp of international events. While wittingly dismissing crackpot attacks from right and left, the author does find the Council guilty on occasion of being dull and pompous, and he maintains that its influence has never been as great as claimed by its friends or enemies.