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America Unbound: The Bush Revolution in Foreign Policyby Ivo H. Daalder and James M. Lindsay
Synopses & Reviews
George W. Bush has launched a revolution in American foreign policy. He has redefined how America engages the world, shedding the constraints that friends, allies, and international institutions impose on its freedom of action. He has insisted that an America unbound is a more secure America.
How did a man once mocked for knowing little about the world come to be a foreign policy revolutionary? In America Unbound, Ivo H. Daalder and James M. Lindsay dismiss claims that neoconservatives have captured the heart and mind of the president. They show that George W. Bush has been no one's puppet. He has been a strong and decisive leader with a coherent worldview that was evident even during the 2000 presidential campaign.
Daalder and Lindsay caution that the Bush revolution comes with significant risks. Raw power alone is not enough to preserve and extend America's security and prosperity in the modern world. The United States often needs the help of others to meet the challenges it faces overseas. But Bush's revolutionary impulse has stirred great resentment abroad. At some point, Daalder and Lindsay warn, Bush could find that America's friends and allies refuse to follow his lead. America will then stand alone — a great power unable to achieve its most important goals.
"In America Unbound, two highly respected foreign policy experts...have written a splendidly illuminating book on 'the Bush revolution' and the doctrine of unilateral intervention and pre-emptive war." James Chace, The New York Times
"After outlining the nuances of this new nationalist strategy, its challenges, rewards, and risks are analyzed in detail, providing foreign-policy wonks with plenty of material for debate." Margaret Flanagan, Booklist
"Future examinations of Bush foreign policy will be measured against this authoritative book." Daniel Schorr, National Public Radio
"The research is admirable, the arguments are well marshaled, and the absence of stridency adds considerable authority to the portrayal of Bush as a president whose 'worldview simply made no allowance for others' doubting the purity of American motives.'" Serge Schmemann, The New York Times Book Review
Book News Annotation:
Two Clinton-era National Security Council staffers offer muted criticism of George W. Bush's foreign policy from a realist perspective. September 11th is identified as the reason for Congressional deference to Bush's "revolutionary" tangent as Bush proceeded to wage war on Afghanistan and Iraq, unleash the CIA from previous legal constraints, and generally pursue a "hegemonist" worldview in foreign affairs. Not unexpectedly, they would prefer the multilateral approach towards exercising American power that has largely prevailed over the past five decades.
Annotation ©2004 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
The conventional wisdom that President George W. Bush began his presidency as a novice in international affairs was wrong. A White House insider during his father's administration, Bush believed that the unilateral exercise of American power was the best way to promote America's national interests. Daalder and Lindsay explore the high risks and costs of the foreign policy practiced by the present administration.
This book explores how the Bush revolution in foreign policy carries with it high risks and possibly high costs. The authors argue that an America unbound by the need to convince others of the justice of its cause is an America that conveys an arrogance born of power rather than principle.
Includes bibliographical references (p. 201-226) and index.
About the Author
Ivo H. Daalder is a senior fellow in Foreign Policy Studies at the Brookings Institution and holds the Sydney Stein Jr. Chair in International Security. His books include Winning Ugly: NATO's War to Save Kosovo (Brookings 2000) and Getting to Dayton: The Making of America's Bosnia Policy (Brookings 2000). In 1995-96, Daalder was director for European affairs on the National Security Council staff.
James M. Lindsay is vice president and director of studies of the Council on Foreign Relations, where he holds the Maurice R. Greenberg Chair. He was previously deputy director and senior fellow in Foreign Policy Studies at the Brookings Institution. His books include Agenda for the Nation (Brookings 2003) and Defending America: The Case for Limited National Missile Defense (Brookings 2001). In 1996-97, Lindsay was director for global issues and multilateral affairs on the National Security Council staff.
Table of Contents
1 The Bush Revolution 1
2 George Bush and the Vulcans 17
3 Bush's Worldview 35
4 Building a Team 50
5 The First Eight Months 62
6 September 11 78
7 Onto the Offensive 98
8 The Bush Strategy 116
9 The Inevitable Showdown 129
10 The Iraq War 145
11 Who's Next? 172
12 The Perils of Power 188
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