The Grand Chessboard: American Primacy And Its Geostrategic Imperatives [NOOK Book]


As the twentieth century draws to a close, the United States has emerged as the world’s only superpower: no other nation possesses comparable military and economic power or has interests that bestride the globe. Yet the critical question facing America remains unanswered: What should be the nation’s global strategy for maintaining its exceptional position in the world? Zbigniew Brzezinski tackles this question head-on in this incisive and pathbreaking book.The Grand Chessboard presents Brzezinski’s bold and ...
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The Grand Chessboard: American Primacy And Its Geostrategic Imperatives

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As the twentieth century draws to a close, the United States has emerged as the world’s only superpower: no other nation possesses comparable military and economic power or has interests that bestride the globe. Yet the critical question facing America remains unanswered: What should be the nation’s global strategy for maintaining its exceptional position in the world? Zbigniew Brzezinski tackles this question head-on in this incisive and pathbreaking book.The Grand Chessboard presents Brzezinski’s bold and provocative geostrategic vision for American preeminence in the twenty-first century. Central to his analysis is the exercise of power on the Eurasian landmass, which is home to the greatest part of the globe’s population, natural resources, and economic activity. Stretching from Portugal to the Bering Strait, from Lapland to Malaysia, Eurasia is the ”grand chessboard” on which America’s supremacy will be ratified and challenged in the years to come. The task facing the United States, he argues, is to manage the conflicts and relationships in Europe, Asia, and the Middle East so that no rival superpower arises to threaten our interests or our well-being.The heart of The Grand Chessboard is Brzezinski’s analysis of the four critical regions of Eurasia and of the stakes for America in each arena—Europe, Russia, Central Asia, and East Asia. The crucial fault lines may seem familiar, but the implosion of the Soviet Union has created new rivalries and new relationships, and Brzezinski maps out the strategic ramifications of the new geopolitical realities. He explains, for example: Why France and Germany will play pivotal geostrategic roles, whereas Britain and Japan will not. Why NATO expansion offers Russia the chance to undo the mistakes of the past, and why Russia cannot afford to toss this opportunity aside. Why the fate of Ukraine and Azerbaijan are so important to America. Why viewing China as a menace is likely to become a self-fulfilling prophecy. Why America is not only the first truly global superpower but also the last—and what the implications are for America’s legacy. Brzezinski’s surprising and original conclusions often turn conventional wisdom on its head as he lays the groundwork for a new and compelling vision of America’s vital interests. Once, again, Zbigniew Brzezinski provides our nation with a philosophical and practical guide for maintaining and managing our hard-won global power.
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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Not everyone will agree that the U.S. must "perpetuate [its] own dominant position for at least a generation and preferably longer," but former National Security Adviser Brzezinski offers a meticulously detailed argument for how and why we should. He begins with a quick review of every empire in history and how they compare with America, which he concludes is the first truly global power. He then argues that "Eurasia is... the chessboard on which the struggle for global primacy continues to be played," and moves on to equally brief but comprehensive accounts of political developments there, ranging over entire histories and concluding with how America can best balance power in the region. While it seems overly ambitious to attempt to cover this much ground in a short work, Brzezinski succeeds. He is less convincing, however, when he strays from geopolitics and claims that America is internally threatened by being "fixated on mass entertainment... heavily dominated by hedonistic and socially escapist themes." Those who are uncomfortable with his initial premise will be relieved by his conclusion: America's ultimate destiny is to give up its primacy in exchange for "an enduring framework of global geopolitical cooperation." (Oct.)
Presents Brzezinski's (former National Security Adviser to the President) views on geopolitical strategies to maintain the global power of the U.S. Focusing on four regions of the Eurasian continent (Western Europe, Russia, and Central and Eastern Asia) as the chessboard upon which America's supremacy will be tested, he argues that U.S. foreign policy (with a view towards the establishment of an expanded NATO and a Trans-Eurasian Security System) should rely on maneuver and manipulation to prevent the emergence of a hostile state or coalition of states that could seek to challenge the U.S.'s global stewardship. Annotation c. by Book News, Inc., Portland, Or.
Kirkus Reviews
The former national security advisor is still a believer in geopolitics after all these years. Like most foreign-policy aficionados weaned on the Cold War, Brzezinski (Out of Control, 1993) has been forced by the disintegration of the Soviet Union to broaden his perspective—but not very far. He sees the US as the only global superpower, but inability to maintain its hegemony indefinitely means that "geostrategic skill" is essential. To what end is not specified beyond the vague shaping of "a truly cooperative global community" that is in "the fundamental interests of humankind," but in this genre, goals are commonly assumed rather than examined. In any case, Brzezinski casts Eurasia as the playing field upon which the world's fate is determined and analyzes the possibilities in Europe, the former Soviet Union, the Balkans (interpreted broadly), and the Far East. Like a grandmaster in chess, he plots his strategy several moves in advance, envisioning a three-stage development. Geopolitical pluralism must first be promoted to defuse challenges to America, then compatible international partners must be developed to encourage cooperation under American leadership, and finally the actual sharing of international political responsibility can be considered. The twin poles of this strategy are a united Europe in the West and China in the East; the central regions are more problematic and, for Brzezinski, not as critical in constructing a stable balance of power. This updated version of East-West geopolitics is worth taking seriously but it is also an amazing example of how a perspective can be revised without actually being rethought.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780465004348
  • Publisher: Basic Books
  • Publication date: 3/21/2007
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 240
  • Sales rank: 260,028
  • File size: 3 MB

Meet the Author

Zbigniew Brzezinski
Zbigniew Brzezinski, the National Security Advisor to President Jimmy Carter, 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, the Johns Hopkins University, both located in Washington, D.C. His many books include The Choice and The Grand Chessboard. He lives in Washington, D.C.
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Table of Contents

List of Maps
List of Charts and Tables
Introduction: Superpower Politics
1 Hegemony of a New Type 3
The Short Road to Global Supremacy 3
The First Global Power 10
The American Global System 24
2 The Eurasian Chessboard 30
Geopolitics and Geostrategy 37
Geostrategic Players and Geopolitical Pivots 40
Critical Choices and Potential Challenges 48
3 The Democratic Bridgehead 57
Grandeur and Redemption 61
America's Central Objective 71
Europe's Historic Timetable 81
4 The Black Hole 87
Russia's New Geopolitical Setting 87
Geostrategic Phantasmagoria 96
The Dilemma of the One Alternative 118
5 The Eurasian Balkans 123
The Ethnic Cauldron 125
The Multiple Contest 135
Neither Dominion Nor Exclusion 148
6 The Far Eastern Anchor 151
China: Not Global but Regional 158
Japan: Not Regional but International 173
America's Geostrategic Adjustment 185
7 Conclusion 194
A Geostrategy for Eurasia 197
A Trans-Eurasian Security System 208
Beyond the Last Global Superpower 209
Index 217
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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 4, 2004

    Brzezinski is a brilliant Soothsayer !!

    The grand chess board as suggested by the title discusses the US geopolitical global strategies to maintain world domination. Mr. Brzezinsky is a globalist and carries out effectively in his book the policies of his globalist organizations (the Council On Foreign Relations, and the Trilateral Commission). His book has deservingly received grave and impressive reviews by his fellow trilateralists and CFR members. What's bothersome is that Mr. Brzezinsky's predictions are not simply a prognostication, but are technically implied policies in the making. It's frightening to become aware of the many vulnerabilities in the world, and the potential for violence in many 'hot' areas, which can be easily inflamed by covert operations. Brzezinsky is an expert in conflict creation. He was once very proud of his Afghani freedom fighters that defeated the Soviet Union. This book provides important and stimulating information for the average person. It will help you think and even predict future conflicts in the world. The forecasts in this book should be taken seriously by the reader, after all Mr. Brzezinsky represents the elite and the policy makers.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 1, 2003

    Worth Reading

    If you fear world government(UN), this is a good read. Mr.Brzezinski's is the quintessential insider and a member of the Council On Foreign Relations. His push for world government is quite disturbing. In 'Between Two Ages' (another book of his), Brzezinski declared that 'National sovereignty is no longer a viable concept,' Anyways, this book is worth a read.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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