"The background to decisions that influenced the fate of the world; required reading for everyone who wants to understand how the thinking of a great strategist inspired and shaped changes in the global policies of the most powerful superpower." --Adam Daniel Rotfeld, former foreign minister of Poland"This is a colorful story about a fascinating man--big politics, big characters, and real emotion. As I read this book I felt more and more furious. After all, I had been in Washington. Why did it never enter my mind to write a book about Brzezinski? Too late. Andrzej Lubowski has written what needed to be written, the way it needed to be written." --Tomasz Lis, editor-in-chief of Newsweek (Poland) and former Washington correspondent for Polish TV "This book shows us what international politics would have looked like if America had not had Brzezinski." --Stefan Bratkowski, writer, honorary president of the Society of Polish Journalists "Excellent--written in lively prose and full of anecdotes, yet fully documented and grounded in reality, it reads effortlessly." --Newsweek (Poland)
“Kissinger opted for a strategy of accommodation with Moscow, while Brzezinski, claiming that the very nature of Soviet ideology and policies prevents stability, sought strategies for undermining the Soviet system. . . . In retrospect, Brzezinski was proven right and Kissinger was wrong.” —Shlomo Avineri in the preface
Zbigniew Brzezinski, widely regarded as a key actor in the last half-century of American foreign policy, remains a high-profile commentator on current events and an influential critic of some policies of subsequent administrations. His intellect and eloquent wit have made him an irreplaceable and controversial part of the American scene. He continues to fascinate historians, journalists, and conspiracy theorists.
This is not a conventional doorstop biography. Instead, Zbig focuses on Brzezinski’s critical and underappreciated contribution to the collapse of the Soviet Union—his lifelong mission.
Utterly free of illusions about the nature of Communist power, Brzezinski advocated “peaceful engagement” as the best tactic for exploiting systemic Soviet vulnerabilities. His stand on human rights and his tutelage of and influence on President Jimmy Carter had a profound effect on the course of the Cold War.
Zbig also compares Brzezinski with his Harvard rival, Henry Kissinger—a strong proponent of realpolitik. Brilliant as Kissinger is, he did little to change American perceptions of the world in a lasting way. Brzezinski did.