Strategic Vision by Zbigniew Brzezinski


8 Critic Reviews

An urgent call for “historic renewal” by one of America’s sharpest minds.


By 1991, following the disintegration first of the Soviet bloc and then of the Soviet Union itself, the United States was left standing tall as the only global super-power. Not only the 20th but even the 21st century seemed destined to be the American centuries. But that super-optimism did not last long. During the last decade of the 20th century and the first decade of the 21st century, the stock market bubble and the costly foreign unilateralism of the younger Bush presidency, as well as the financial catastrophe of 2008 jolted America – and much of the West – into a sudden recognition of its systemic vulnerability to unregulated greed. Moreover, the East was demonstrating a surprising capacity for economic growth and technological innovation. That prompted new anxiety about the future, including even about America’s status as the leading world power. This book is a response to a challenge. It argues that without an America that is economically vital, socially appealing, responsibly powerful, and capable of sustaining an intelligent foreign engagement, the geopolitical prospects for the West could become increasingly grave. The ongoing changes in the distribution of global power and mounting global strife make it all the more essential that America does not retreat into an ignorant garrison-state mentality or wallow in cultural hedonism but rather becomes more strategically deliberate and historically enlightened in its global engagement with the new East. This book seeks to answer four major questions:

1. What are the implications of the changing distribution of global power from West to East, and how is it being affected by the new reality of a politically awakened humanity?
2. Why is America’s global appeal waning, how ominous are the symptoms of America’s domestic and international decline, and how did America waste the unique global opportunity offered by the peaceful end of the Cold War?
3. What would be the likely geopolitical consequences if America did decline by 2025, and could China then assume America’s central role in world affairs?
4. What ought to be a resurgent America’s major long-term geopolitical goals in order to shape a more vital and larger West and to engage cooperatively the emerging and dynamic new East?

America, Brzezinski argues, must define and pursue a comprehensive and long-term a geopolitical vision, a vision that is responsive to the challenges of the changing historical context. This book seeks to provide the strategic blueprint for that vision.


About Zbigniew Brzezinski

See more books from this Author
Zbigniew Brzezinski, formerly President Jimmy Carter's National Security Advisor, is a counselor and trustee at the Center for Strategic and International Studies and a professor of American foreign policy at the School of Advanced International Studies at Johns Hopkins University. His many books include the New York Times bestseller Second Chance: Three Presidents and the Crisis of American Superpower; The Choice: Global Domination or Global Leadership; and The Grand Chessboard: American Primacy and Its Geostrategic Imperative. He lives in Washington, D.C.
Published January 24, 2012 by Basic Books. 240 pages
Genres: Political & Social Sciences, History. Non-fiction
Bestseller Status:
Peak Rank on Feb 12 2012
Weeks as Bestseller
Add Critic Review

Critic reviews for Strategic Vision
All: 8 | Positive: 5 | Negative: 3


Dec 01 2011

An urgent call for “historic renewal” by one of America’s sharpest minds.

Read Full Review of Strategic Vision | See more reviews from Kirkus

NY Times

Below average
Reviewed by Michiko Kakutani on Jan 29 2012

...missing from this book are any substantive discussions of how the United States might overcome “its staggering domestic challenges and reorient its drifting foreign policy”...

Read Full Review of Strategic Vision | See more reviews from NY Times

Financial Times

Above average
Reviewed by Philip Stephens on Feb 19 2012

Brzezinski’s call is for a grand strategy in Washington that at once acknowledges the claims of the rising powers...There would be nothing easy in such a task.

Read Full Review of Strategic Vision | See more reviews from Financial Times

The Washington Post

Reviewed by David Ignatius on Jan 25 2012

. . .Brzezinski has always been on the hawkish, “realist” side of his party, and in this book, he is especially critical of status-quo policies.

Read Full Review of Strategic Vision

Foreign Affairs

Reviewed by WALTER RUSSELL MEAD on May 01 2012

In this crisp and stimulating book, Brzezinski speculates on the dangers that could result from the decline of the United States...In the end, his message is reassuring...

Read Full Review of Strategic Vision

WV Gazette

Reviewed by Paul Nyden on Feb 25 2012

. . .offers harsh critiques of foreign policies backed by many leaders from both major political parties today.

Read Full Review of Strategic Vision

eInternational Relations

Reviewed by Alex Stark on Mar 29 2012

While parts of Strategic Vision’s analysis are thin, the overall impact of the book is strong.

Read Full Review of Strategic Vision

European Institute

Below average
Reviewed by Robert Stack

On the one hand, Brzezinski continues to insist that America is the crucial country. . . that formulation is only a short putt away from American exceptionalism, which has often led the U.S. to foreign misadventures in the last decade.

Read Full Review of Strategic Vision

Reader Rating for Strategic Vision

An aggregated and normalized score based on 158 user ratings from iDreamBooks & iTunes

Rate this book!

Add Review