Catalogue


The American era : power and strategy for the 21st century /
Robert J. Lieber.
edition
1st pbk. ed. with updates and a postscript.
imprint
Cambridge : Cambridge University Press, 2007.
description
x, 293 p. ; 23 cm.
ISBN
9780521697385 (pbk.)
format(s)
Book
Holdings
More Details
imprint
Cambridge : Cambridge University Press, 2007.
isbn
9780521697385 (pbk.)
catalogue key
6225487
 
Includes bibliographical references (p. 231-271) and index.
A Look Inside
About the Author
Author Affiliation
Robert J. Lieber is a professor of government and international affairs at Georgetown University
Full Text Reviews
Appeared in Choice on 2006-03-01:
Criticism of the Bush administration's foreign policy abounds on both sides of the conservative/liberal divide. In this work, Lieber (Georgetown Univ.) presents the reader with a cogent, unapologetic argument for an activist foreign policy based on the Bush Doctrine and the National Security Strategy document. The author contends that it is necessary for the US to employ an activist foreign policy in order to survive in the perilous threat environment of the post-9/11 world. He also argues that it is both advantageous and necessary for the US to maintain its preeminent superpower position in an international arena filled with multiple threats and no final arbiter. Primacy, preemption, the spread of democracy, and a willingness to take unilateral action are all key components of Lieber's grand strategy for the 21st century. The work contains an intelligent mix of theoretical concepts and practical applications. Foreign policy analysis centers on Europe, Iraq, and Asia at the expense of Latin America and Africa. This volume serves as a valuable counterweight to the numerous polemics written about current US foreign policy. ^BSumming Up: Recommended. General readers; students, lower-division undergraduate and up; and faculty. J. R. Hedtke Cabrini College
Reviews
Review Quotes
'The writing is refreshingly free of jargon - a fault of much of the literature written in opposition to Lieber's thesis. His case is argued to strong, non-partisan effect. His examples are telling. The overall impact is to restructure the debate over recent American foreign policy along lines that are calm, analytical, and scholarly. We can only hope other books, whatever their normative agenda, will follow this example.' Japanese Journal of Political Science
"This may be the best book on American foreign policy written since Sept. 11. Robert Lieber is a scholar with deep insight, broad knowledge, and, what is lacking in most discussions of world affairs today, common sense. Anyone thinking seriously global affairs today and in the coming years should begin with this smart and sober work." Robert Kagan, author of Of Paradise and Power: America and Europe in the New World Order
"This may be the best book on American foreign policy written since Sept. 11. Robert Lieber is a scholar with deep insight, broad knowledge, and, what is lacking in most discussions of world affairs today, common sense. Anyone thinking seriously global affairs today and in the coming years should begin with this smart and sober work." Robert Kagan, author, Of Paradise and Power: America and Europe in the New World Order
'We can only hope other books, whatever their normative agenda, will follow this example.' Political Science
"With its powerful thesis and compelling arguments, Robert Lieber's The American Era is destined to become a key text in the global debate about American foreign policy." Michael Mandelbaum, author of The Ideas That Conquered the World: Peace, Democracy and Free Markets in the Twenty-First Century
"Mr. Lieber's book gives a comprehensive and in-depth explanation of the foundations for the strategy and actions of the administration, of interest to its supporters. At the same time, the book will compel critics to consider the best arguments that can be made for the administration's international policies." The Washington Times
'[The American Era is] a wonderful, elegant and compelling analysis in every respect ... It will become compulsory reading on my Masters US Foreign Policy course next year and, I believe, should be read - and hopefully understood! - by anyone interested in American foreign policy. It really represents a magnificent achievement and is a work of exemplary scholarship. I hope and trust it receives the positive impact, reviews and sales that it thoroughly deserves.' Robert Singh, Birkbeck College, University of London
"√ĚThe American Era is ¬® a wonderful, elegant and compelling analysis in every respect... It will become compulsory reading on my Masters US Foreign Policy course next year and, I believe, should be read - and hopefully understood! - by anyone interested in American foreign policy. It really represents a magnificent achievement and is a work of exemplary scholarship. I hope and trust it receives the positive impact, reviews and sales that it thoroughly deserves." Robert Singh, Birbeck College, University of London
"[The American Era is ] a wonderful, elegant and compelling analysis in every respect... It will become compulsory reading on my Masters US Foreign Policy course next year and, I believe, should be read - and hopefully understood! - by anyone interested in American foreign policy. It really represents a magnificent achievement and is a work of exemplary scholarship. I hope and trust it receives the positive impact, reviews and sales that it thoroughly deserves." Robert Singh, Birbeck College, University of London
"A powerful book with truly global scope. Lieber is not only a specialist on U.S. foreign policy, he has deep knowledge of Europe, the Middle East, global energy, and security affairs...Lieber recognizes the costs and limits of military force, but he argues, without apologies, for the prudent use of American military power to safeguard the U.S. and, indeed, the world." Charles Lipson, University of Chicago
"Lieber has produced an elegantly written and readable book. It is a welcome and, in many respects, authoritative addition to the growing literature on recent American foreign policy." International Affairs
Mr. Lieber's book gives a comprehensive and in-depth explanation of the foundations for the strategy and actions of the administration, of interest to its supporters. At the same time, the book will compel critics to consider the best arguments that can be made for the administration's international policies." The Washington Times
"Distracted by the red-hot partisan debate over Iraq, one can easily lose sight of the underlying strategic imperative that now guides American foreign policy. Robert Lieber's The American Era: Power and Strategy for the 21st Century serves as an invaluable primer on the nature of that imperative, outlining in a comprehensive but accessible fashion the continuing need for American global leadership." Gary Schmitt, The Weekly Standard
"Robert Lieber has written a first-rate book...A work of scholarship, yet accessible to a wider readership, a work of judgment, yet anchored in the data and the objective world...a book of quality by a scholar of genuine depth and authority." Fouad Ajami, Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies, Johns Hopkins University
"Robert Lieber's The American Era: Power and Strategy for the 21st Century is a brief but compelling review of American foreign policy over the last five years, and pretty much demolishes the idea that we are roundly hated or that we are culpable for various alleged sins. A sober and very readable account by a Georgetown University scholar whose intellectual integrity and knowledge shine through on every page." Victor Davis Hanson, senior fellow at the Hoover Institution. His latest book is A War Like No Other. How the Athenians and Spartans Fought the Peloponnesian War.
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Summaries
Bowker Data Service Summary
This controversial book addresses the world role America has begun to undertake in light of recent terrorist events. It will be of interest to anyone involved in international relations and American diplomatic history.
Description for Bookstore
This controversial book addresses the world role America has begun to undertake in light of recent terrorist events. In such a time when threats from terrorism and weapons of mass destruction are a reality, global activism on the part of the U.S. becomes a necessity.
Main Description
The American Era makes a provocative argument about America's world role. It sets out the case for a grand strategy that recognizes American preponderance as necessary and desirable for coping with the perils of the post-9/11 world. The book argues firstly that, Militant Islamic terrorism and weapons of mass destruction pose a threat which requires us to alter the way we think about the pre-emptive and preventive use of force. Secondly, the UN and other international bodies are incapable of acting on these urgent problems. Thirdly, in an international system with no true central authority other countries will inevitably look for leadership to the US. The book argues that if America does not respond actively to terrorist threats, no one else will take the initiative.
Long Description
The American Era makes a provocative argument about America's world role. It establishes the rationale for a grand strategy that recognizes American preponderance as necessary and desirable for coping with the perils of the post-9/11 world. First, militant Islamic terrorism plus weapons of mass destruction pose a threat of an entirely new magnitude and require us to alter the way we think about the preemptive and even preventive use of force. Second, the UN and other international bodies are habitually incapable of acting on the most urgent and deadly problems. Third, in an international system with no true central authority, other countries will inevitably look for leadership to the U.S. If America, as the world's foremost power, does not take the lead in confronting the most dangerous threats, no one else is likely to have the ability or the will to do so. Thus, at a time when threats from terrorism and weapons of mass destruction are a reality, and when such values as human rights, liberty and stability cannot be reliably assured by institutions such as the UN and the European Union, active intervention on those issues that matter most becomes a necessity, not an option. Robert J. Lieber is currently Professor of Government and International Affairs at Georgetown University. He is an expert on American foreign policy and U.S. relations with the Middle East and Europe. He received his undergraduate education at the University of Wisconsin and his Ph.D. at Harvard and has held fellowships from the Guggenheim, Rockefeller and Ford Foundations, the Council on Foreign Relations, and the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars. Lieber has taught at Harvard, Oxford and theUniversity of California, Davis, and has been Visiting Fellow at St. Antony's College Oxford, the Harvard Center for International Affairs, the Atlantic Institute in Paris, the Brooking Institution in Washington, and Fudan University in Shanghai.
Description for Bookstore
This controversial book addresses the world role America has begun to undertake in light of recent terrorist events. The book argues that if America does not respond actively to terrorist threats, no one else will take the initiative.
Description for Library
This controversial book addresses the world role America has begun to undertake in light of recent terrorist events. If America does not respond actively to terrorist threats, no one else is likely to take the initiative. In such a time when threats from terrorism and weapons of mass destruction are a reality, and when human rights, peace, and stability cannot be assured by institutions like the U.N. and European Union, global activism on the part of the U.S. becomes a necessity, not something about which to be apologetic.
Table of Contents
Prefacep. vii
Introductionp. 1
Caveat Empire: How to Think about American Powerp. 11
American Primacy: What Power Can and Can't Dop. 15
Thinking about American Grand Strategyp. 25
New (and Old) Grand Strategyp. 39
Grand Strategy after 9/11 and the Bush National Security Strategyp. 42
Dilemmas of Grand Strategyp. 51
Threats to Primacyp. 54
Foreign Policy Where It Countsp. 58
Europe: Symbolic Reactions and Common Threatsp. 61
Sources of Conflictp. 65
Sources of Solidarityp. 79
Radical Change?p. 92
Explaining the Lack of Balancingp. 93
Globalization, Culture, and Identities in Crisisp. 95
Globalization and Its Discontentsp. 98
Culture and American Primacyp. 100
Culture and Political Conflictp. 105
Popular, Folk, and High Culturep. 107
Culture as a Problem of Identityp. 112
Globalization, Culture, and Conflictp. 120
Iraq and the Middle East: Dilemmas of U.S. Powerp. 125
Background: America and the Middle Eastp. 128
Iraq: A Necessary War?p. 130
Trade-offs in the Use of Forcep. 141
Judging America's Rolep. 144
The Lessons of Iraqp. 148
Postscript: What about Israel?p. 151
Asia's American Pacifierp. 157
The United States as an Asian Powerp. 158
Asia's American Pacifierp. 163
Asia without Tearsp. 174
Why They Hate Us and Why They Love Usp. 177
Explanations of Foreign Hostilityp. 180
Styles of Anti-Americanismp. 184
Anti-Americanism: Polls, Precedents, and Politicsp. 192
U.S. Responsibility?p. 196
Danger or Distraction?p. 199
Postscript: The Future of the American Erap. 203
Achievements and Setbacksp. 204
Alternative Strategiesp. 206
Existential Threats and the "Long War"p. 213
Beyond Iraq and Iranp. 217
Persistent Primacy and the Future of the American Erap. 225
Notesp. 231
Indexp. 273
Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.

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