21 July 2008

To Lead the World: American Strategy After the Bush Doctrine

James Kurth, “Boss of Bosses,” pp. 109-132; chapter 5 in Melvyn P. Leffler and Jeffrey W. Legro, eds., To Lead the World: American Strategy After the Bush Doctrine (New York: Oxford University Press, 21 July 2008).

U.S. national security policy is at a critically important crossroads. … In To Lead the World, Melvyn P. Leffler and Jeffery W. Legro bring together eleven of America’s most esteemed writers and thinkers to offer concrete, historically grounded suggestions for how America can regain its standing in the world and use its power more wisely than it has during the Bush years. Best-selling authors such as David Kennedy, Niall Ferguson, Robert Kagan, Francis Fukuyama, and Samantha Power address such issues as how the U.S. can regain its respect in the world, respond to the biggest threats now facing the country, identify reasonable foreign policy goals, manage the growing debt burden, achieve greater national security, and successfully engage a host of other problems left unsolved and in many cases exacerbated by the Bush Doctrine. Representing a wide range of perspectives, the writers gathered here place the current foreign-policy predicament firmly in the larger context of American and world history and draw upon realistic appraisals of both the strengths and the limits of American power. They argue persuasively that the kind of leadership that made the United States a great—and greatly admired—nation in the past can be revitalized to meet the challenges of the 21st century.
Written by prize-winning authors and filled with level-headed, far-sighted, and achievable recommendations,
To Lead the World will serve as a primary source of political wisdom in the post-Bush era and will add immeasurably to the policy debates surrounding the 2008 presidential election….