In This Review

The United States and the New Europe, 1945-1993
The United States and the New Europe, 1945-1993
By Peter Duignan and L. H. Gann
Blackwell, 1994, 357 pp

A rather complacent retelling of America's beneficent involvement with post-1945 Europe. The bulk of the book deals with the years after 1985. The authors, senior fellows at the Hoover Institution, have read widely and write easily, with clever apercus and quotes from Moliere and Gilbert and Sullivan. Analysis of the past is mixed with prescriptions for the present, including the call for greater and, it is argued, well-founded American optimism, a plea for renouncing America's role as the world's policeman and a continued ABM program. A note of triumphalism over "self-styled progressive scholars [and] leftist intelligentsia" marks the book, leading in one instance to distorting the views of a leading European liberal. Or take this example of in-depth analysis: "Most professors dislike military spending, not merely because they prefer peace to war, and spending on welfare to arms, but because professors compete with the military for public acclaim and public funds." These gratuitous remarks aside, there is much useful material here, especially on the economic underpinning of political developments.