Faces of Power

Constancy and Change in United States Foreign Policy from Truman to Obama, third edition

Seyom Brown

Columbia University Press

Faces of Power

Pub Date: February 2015

ISBN: 9780231133296

864 Pages

Format: Paperback

List Price: $46.00£38.00

Pub Date: February 2015

ISBN: 9780231133289

864 Pages

Format: Hardcover

List Price: $130.00£108.00

Pub Date: February 2015

ISBN: 9780231538213

864 Pages

Format: E-book

List Price: $45.99£38.00

Faces of Power

Constancy and Change in United States Foreign Policy from Truman to Obama, third edition

Seyom Brown

Columbia University Press

Seyom Brown's authoritative account of U.S. foreign policy from the end of the Second World War to the present challenges common assumptions about American presidents and their struggle with power and purpose. Brown shows Truman to be more anguished than he publicly revealed about the use of the atomic bomb; Eisenhower and George W. Bush to be more immersed in the details of policy formulation and implementation than generally believed; Reagan to be more invested in changing his worldview while in office than any previous president; and Obama to have modeled his military exit from Iraq and Afghanistan more closely to Nixon and Kissinger's exit strategy from Vietnam than he would like to admit. Brown's analyses of Obama's policies for countering terrorist threats at home and abroad, dealing with unprecedented upheavals in the Middle East, preventing the proliferation of nuclear weapons, and containing new territorial expansion by China and Russia reinforce the book's "constancy and change" theme, which shows that serving the interests of the most powerful country in the world transforms the Oval Office's occupant more than its occupant can transform the world.

Praise for previous editions:

"Systematic and informative... [Brown] has a gift for clear analysis that makes his book a useful contribution to the Cold War literature."—The Journal of American History

"Comprehensive and clear... thorough without ever becoming dull, providing detailed analysis of decisions while never neglecting the environment within which they are made."—International Affairs

"An excellent reference for those interested in United States foreign policy.... Well-written and well-researched, it is appropriate for use in both undergraduate and graduate courses."—International Journal

"An analysis with difference—an important difference. Seyom Brown discusses United States policy from the perspective of how decision makers in the United States viewed their adversaries and the alternatives as those decision makers saw them.... Well worth the effort of a careful reading."—American Political Science Review
[A]n analysis with difference-an important difference. Seyom Brown discusses United States policy from the perspective of how decision makers in the United States viewed their adversaries and the alternatives as those decision makers saw them.... Well worth the effort of a careful reading. American Political Science Review
An outstanding work for understanding the big picture and much detail of American foreign policy over the past seventy years. Brilliant clarity in understanding complex situations makes this book particularly rewarding. Ronald E. Neumann, president, American Academy of Diplomacy and former U.S. ambassador to Afghanistan
This well researched and carefully interpreted narrative has become a classic account of American foreign policy. Brown masterfully reveals how presidents since Harry Truman have struggled to reconcile America's commitment to the foundational principles of democracy and the rule of law with a never-ending struggle to protect the national security in a perilous world. Faces of Power is essential reading for anyone who wishes to understand the deep historical roots of the profound challenges that both George W. Bush and Barack Obama have faced in navigating the unsettled terrain of international affairs at the dawn of the twenty-first century. Sidney M. Milkis, University of Virginia
Seyom Brown's latest update of his classic text on U.S. foreign policy since 1945 is a welcome treat for experts and an effective tool for teachers. Brown is both lively and thorough—an extraordinary achievement considering the ground he covers. He describes with style and grace events that seem ambiguous or inconsistent and weaves them into an overarching set of themes: the continuities and breaks of U.S. policy. We should ensure that our friends and students get to know Brown's pathbreaking work, especially in its new and comprehensive form. Cameron Munter, Pomona College, former U.S. ambassador to Pakistan
Recommended. All readership levels. Choice
Preface
Introduction: Constancy and Change Since WWII
Part I. The Truman Administration
1. The Shattering of Expectations
2. Implementing Containment
Part II. The Eisenhower Era
3. A New Look for Less Expensive Power
4. Waging Peace: The Eisenhower Face
5. Crises and Complications
Part III. The Kennedy-Johnson Years
6. Enhancing the Arsenal of Power
7. The Third World as a Primary Arena of Competition
8. Kennedy's Cuban Crises
9. Berlin Again
10. The Vietnam Quagmire
Part IV. Statecraft Under Nixon and Ford
11. Avoiding Humiliation in Indochina
12. The Insufficiency of Military Containment
13. The Middle East and the Reassertion of American Competence Abroad
14. The Anachronism of Conservative Realpolitik
Part V. The Carter Period
15. The Many Faces of Jimmy Carter
16. The Fusion of Realism and Idealism
17. The Camp David Accords: Carter's Finest Hour
18. Iran and Afghanistan: Carter's Struggles to Salvage Containment
Part VI. The Reagan Era—Realism or Romanticism?
19. High Purpose and Grand Strategy
20. The Tension Between Foreign and Domestic Imperatives
21. Middle East Complexities, 1981–1989: The Arab-Israeli Conflict, Terrorism, and Arms for Hostages
22. Contradictions in Latin America
23. The Reagan-Gorbachev Symbiosis
Part VII. Prudential Statecraft with George Herbert Walker Bush
24. Presiding Over the End of the Cold War
25. The Resort to Military Power
26. The New World Order
Part VIII. Clinton's Globalism
27. From Domestic Politician to Geopolitician
28. Opportunities and Frustrations in the Middle East
29. Leaving Somalia and Leaving Rwanda Alone
30. Getting Tough with Saddam and Osama
31. Into Haiti and the Balkans: The Responsibility to Protect
Part IX. The Freedom Agenda of George W. Bush
32. Neoconservatives Seize the Day
33. 9/11, the War on Terror, and a New Strategic Doctrine
34. From Containment to Forcible Regime Change: Afghanistan and Iraq
35. National Security and Civil Liberties
Part X. Obama's Universalism Versus a Still-Fragmented World
36. Engaging the World
37. Ending Two Wars
38. Counterterrorism and Human Rights
39. Ambivalence in Dealing with Upheavals in the Arab World
Epilogue
Notes
Index

Read an excerpt from "Engaging the World," the new section on Barack Obama:

About the Author

Seyom Brown has been a senior policy analyst at the RAND Corporation, the Brookings Institution, the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, Harvard University's Belfer Center, the John Goodwin Tower Center for Political Studies, and the American Security Project and has served in the Department of State and the Department of Defense. He has taught at Brandeis University; Harvard University; Columbia University; the University of California, Los Angeles; the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies; Southern Methodist University; and the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy.