When a quick and well-informed mind challenges conventional assumptions, some troubling questions are bound to arise about the present and future state of the world. Drawing on his experience in government and business, Jeffrey Garten shows quite eloquently how easily serious frictions can arise among Germany, Japan and the United States, and how difficult it is likely to be for them to cooperate with their different kinds of capitalism and their diverse histories. Like other observers he sees little chance of Japanese or German leadership and hopes the United States can find ways of taking major responsibility for international affairs with the help of the others. But for that, he says, this country must overcome its current economic weaknesses and social problems, which can no longer be thought of as separate from foreign policy. This is a challenging, helpful book.