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Second Chance: Three Presidents and the Crisis of American Superpower Hardcover – Bargain Price, March 5, 2007
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About the Author
Reader of over 400 audiobooks, Dick Hill has won three coveted Audie awards and been nominated numerous times. He is also the recipient of several AudioFile Earphones Awards. AudioFile includes Dick on their prestigious list of "Golden Voices." --This text refers to the Audio CD edition.
Top Customer Reviews
Brzezinski analyzes the foreign policy of the last three presidents
(Bush I, Clinton, Bush II) and provides wonderful insights and coherent
criticism--good and bad--of each. The most relevant material is about
the current situation, but understanding the foreign policy of Bush I
and Clinton is essential if one wants to understand what is happening now.
The book's title "Second Chance" refers to what is needed after 2008 to
try to reestablish the global leadership of the United States.
You are not going to get simplistic answers here--"Us versus Them", "Good
versus Evil", "Our enemies hate freedom". Brzezinski shows that many
of the current views--"Arabs respect force above all else", "Democracy
can be imposed from outside", and the like have no basis in reality.
He also warns of the growing closeness between Russia and China, and
he is concerned that China will become the dominant player in the Middle
East, with a growing market for oil, a willingness to provide weapons,
and the absence of a patronizing attitude. The world is a very complex
place, and there are no easy answers. This is definitely not a feel-good
book. As Brzezinski says, we have created a disaster which with very
careful work can eventually be remedied--but there will be no third
Before getting into the details, however, Brzezinski also points out that the collapse of the Soviet was NOT the work of a single person (Ronald Reagan), but the consequence of a 40-year bipartisan effort, beginning with Harry Truman, and also aided by Lech Walesa (defied communism for a decade and compelled compromises that ended communist monopoly on power and precipitated uprisings in Czechoslovakia and Hungary), Pope John Paul II (revived spiritual viability), and Mikhail Gorbachev.
Bush I, according to Brzezinski, did a good (B) job overall - his main achievements were dealing positively with Gorbachev and the U.S.S.R.'s collapse, and then building an impressive coalition to handle Hussein. His two criticisms are that Bush could have done more to resolve the Israeli-Palestine rift (though he did forcefully confront Israel's push to expand settlements), and that Bush I left the Iraq problem unresolved.
Clinton, according to "Second Chance" worked well to move former USSR warheads back into the new Russia, preventing proliferation.Read more ›
While it is fascinating to watch the author mow through parts of the past fifteen years...years he correctly assumes as a nano-second in history...he pulls no punches with regard to our last three presidents. "Second Chance" is a critical look at these past few years and the author rightly comes down with a scorecard, saving his best for last...George W. Bush.
It's hard to believe, as Brzezinski points out, how far we've fallen during Bush's presidency. Could the Iraq war be the biggest policy blunder in American history? He seems to think so as echoed by one he sizes up as astute in the book...Madeleine Albright.
"Second Chance" is a sober and hard-hitting look at today's America. I highly recommend it for its dead-on honesty written by one whose integrity is without question.
His analysis of the past three administrations is superb. It is balanced and I think offers great insight into the hits and misses of our leaders. He goes on to explain his views on the world post Russia and our missed opportunites. His close of post 2008 I would love to hear discussed by him and others.
An important book for this country. Get it and read it and act.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
After you scrape away the hatred for Reagan, its a very insightful book. A good snapshot & analysis of three Presidents.Published on March 24, 2014 by Bill Eger
Clearly our past presidents had some intelligence behind them. I only wish they had listen more closely to ZB's advice in order to make the USA a great friendly responsible... Read morePublished on October 15, 2013 by Amazon Customer
My opinion of George H W Bush really changed after reading this book - must remember that Brzezinski was Natl Security Advisor for Jimmy Carter - but he really admires GHWB's... Read morePublished on May 31, 2013 by A READER IN CENTRAL AMERICA
Must read for every US born person. Showing 3 different presidencies from a great perspective. Should be mandatory in College.Published on February 26, 2013 by Makczek
Zbigniew Brezezinski has written an intelectually stimulative analysis of foreign policy under Bush I, Clinton and Bush II. Read morePublished on July 5, 2011 by No Name