Aron's reputation precedes him as a pro-American European, and it is not surprising in this study of U.S. foreign relations after World War II to find him shadow-boxing with the ""revisionists"" and ""paramarxists"" about the cold war. Wasn't it more rhetoric than action, and as for the action, surely ""U.S. strategy throughout the world remained purely defensive."" Finally with JFK some aggressiveness arrived but ""half measures"" in Vietnam persisted along with ""horrors"" and ""absurdity."" Aron admires Kissinger's diplomacy as more ambitious and flexible than that of the old-fashioned Metternichians, and reminds ""isolationists"" that the Wilsonian crusading spirit has now turned -- he thinks degenerated -- into ""imperial realism."" As for economic imperialism, U.S. dominance, Aron argues, has been beneficent all round. Written in 1972, the book repeatedly stresses the continued threat of Soviet military power. A backward-looking fixation or a hint of new lines to come?