In This Review

Rethinking Us-Soviet Relations
Rethinking Us-Soviet Relations
By George Liska
Basil Blackwell, 1987, 231 pp

Both Russia and America, according to George Liska, need to take a long-term strategic view of their foreign policies and relations with each other. Gorbachev appears to be doing so, but he has no American counterpart. Liska's own rethinking leaves the cold war behind and brings him to the idea of a global equilibrium based on common interests in stability, downgrading of ideology and a recognition of respective, but not exclusive, spheres of influence. No simple summary can do justice to this wide-ranging historical and conceptual analysis; it is not a naïve prescription for peace and good will. The book lacks, however, any inquiry in depth into Soviet society and its capacity for change, a matter that bears on what the U.S. can and should do. The language is complex and the argument at times abstruse, making this no easy reading assignment and possibly limiting the book's impact.