In This Review

To Lead the World: After the Bush Doctrine
To Lead the World: After the Bush Doctrine
By Melvyn P. Leffler and Jeffrey W. Legro
Oxford University Press, 2008, 320 pp

With a distinguished cast of contributors, the editors Leffler and Legro have put together an unusually interesting and useful collection of essays on possible directions for U.S. foreign policy under a new administration. There is at least the beginning of a consensus among the experts: virtually all of them agree that the Bush administration's blunders have damaged the United States' stature and power abroad but that the damage can still be repaired. This consensus would be more useful if the experts did not disagree so fundamentally on what ought to be done next. Still, with their book's contributors comprising Stephen Van Evera, Robert Kagan, Charles Maier, G. John Ikenberry, James Kurth, Samantha Power, David Kennedy, Barry Eichengreen, Douglas Irwin, Francis Fukuyama, and Niall Ferguson, the editors have assembled some of today's most important and cogent thinkers on U.S. foreign policy. A final essay by Leffler and Legro highlights both the similarities of argument and the key points of contention among the contributors and succeeds in describing some of the key choices the next president must make.