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Refresh and try again. Carter gets a more continment treatment of his gadcis than you would expect, and a lot of Reagan’s achievement is rightly attributed gacdis Gorbachev, explicitly citing Kennan’s prediction in the “X” article that change in Soviet behavior would only be possible with a new generation of leadership. Dividing the war into five stages the expanded edition identifies a sixthGaddis demonstrates that each shift in National Security policy was either an embrace of Kennan’s concepts, a reaction against them, or a reconciliation of these two poles.

If anyone could lay credit to the theory, it was probably the Soviets themselves. Nuclear weapons were spreading parity throughout the world. But, this view did not change from the zero-sum assumptions of the IKE administration this was the belief that any victory for communism was a defeat for the US. Even Gaddis has to shade this argument some, acknowledging that Reagan’s policy was arrived at independently, and uniquely his.

Apr 06, Eric rated it really liked it. Tight writing, incredible insights. The revised edition adds a final chapter which discusses both the theory and implementation of the Ronald Reagan administration.

It’s still an info dump and not exactly thrilling to read. Beginning with Franklin D. Gaddis understates the importance of Gorbachev, compared to Melvin Leffler’s brilliant “For the Soul of Mankind,” but Gaddis better understands the dynamics of power and the shallowness of some leaders’ claims to ideology than I think Leffler does.

This book is much more complicated than what I can get across in this review, but let me just end by saying that anyone who studies US foreign policy has to read it. Sep 24, Noe Rodriguez rated it it was amazing. Project MUSE promotes the creation and dissemination of essential humanities and social science resources through collaboration with libraries, publishers, and scholars worldwide.


Things have changed, that’s for sure, but we are where we are now because of decisions that were made decades ago.

I highly recommend it to students of the 20th century, international relations and the Cold War. Lists with This Book. The new edition of the book retains this distinction and applies it to the administrations of Jimmy Carter and Ronald Reagan.

Monday – Friday, 8: Christi Bartman, for inspiring my interest in the subject. Going first sets the terms of the argument, and Gaddis did that.

Motivated by current events, I recently reread this for the first time in many years. Reagan didn’t cause the Soviet reorientation of policy, but he pushed it along at just the right time, and then adjusted towards a policy of cooperation with Gorbachev. Kennan’s original strategy of containment, NSC, The Eisenhower-Dulles “New Look,” the Kennedy-Johnson “flexible response” strategy, the Nixon-Kissinger strategy of detente, and now a comprehensive assessment of how Reagan – and Gorbechev – completed the process of containment, thereby bringing the Cold War to an end.

Although this book is a bit dated, it is critical for anyone trying to understand modern foreign policy and national security. While Gaddis’s early 80s account and the revised version of this book published in is containmwnt “the” book on the subject it is not without its problems, especially for a critical reader familiar with the topics under consideration.

He srategies that Nixon’s ideas largely succeeded, although he was heavily criticized for his deception regarding the bombing of Cambodia and his poor handling of other domestic and international issues such as the sale of arms to Iran due to his preoccupation with the Soviet Union.

May 24, Greg rated it it was amazing Shelves: My library Help Advanced Book Search. Baddis presidency ushered in the fourth period. Foreign Policy Andrew Price-Smith. This updated edition of Gaddis’ classic carries the history of containment through the end of the Cold War. In Strategies of Containment, John Lewis Gaddis clearly lays out the public policy on national security policy and how it evolved over time.

Ends with a summary of what can be transferred to future grand strategies. Reading the long telegram and his Mr.


Strategies of Containment

John Ikenberry and Peter Trubowitz. Roosevelt’s postwar plans, Gaddis provides a thorough cri When Strategies of Containment was first published, the Soviet Union was still a superpower, Ronald Reagan was president of the United States, and kewis Berlin Wall was still standing. Oxford University Press- Diplomacy – pages. There are lessons to be learned here that should not be forgotten.

May 06, Ben rated it it was amazing.

Project MUSE – Containment Strategies in Perspective

The goal was not to remake the world, but balance the power within it. Dec 29, Brad Trefz rated it liked it. Gaddis seems to prefer asymmetrical containment, but he does a great job across the board in explaining how these different strategists saw the geopolity, US goals, US capabilities, and designed strategies.

He concludes, provocatively, that Reagan more effectively than any other Cold War president drew upon the strengths of both approaches while avoiding their weaknesses. Further, his analysis of Vietnam is especially superficial and not without it’s own problems.

Containment was a policy of patience. Dismissing this as dated or irrelevant is a huge mistake. I have long been perturbed by Reagan’s moral Manicheanism, or his willingness to tolerate the most horrible abuses by American allies or proxies while calling out other states for their crimes. One of the other major criticisms of Gaddis’s work beyond his Kennan-centric focus is his lack of consistent methodology in evaluating the various permutations of containment policy.

Overall a great read, and well worth the reread. Kennan’s argument for political containment ignored the immediate military threat, and while he was critical of the “symmetrical” model of NSC, his own pronouncements on Containment largely failed to differentiate between vital and peripheral interests.

Jun 29, Steve Middendorf added it. This is one of the better history book I have read as it refuses to repeat the same themes