OUT OF THE COLD: New Thinking for American Foreign and Defense Policy in the 21st Century by Robert S. McNamara

OUT OF THE COLD: New Thinking for American Foreign and Defense Policy in the 21st Century

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KIRKUS REVIEW

A slim book of slim ideas from former Defense Secretary and World Bank President McNamara, tackling the new international configuration in wake of glasnost. Cut away the ubiquitous headings and subheadings, and the entire first half--which provides a competent but overworked rehash of Cold War history--and what is left here is a good-sized magazine essay on the parameters of future American foreign policy. McNamara argues that we now live in a multipolar world where, for instance, Japan and the coming (1992) Western Europe economic integration will hold as much sway as did the US and USSR in the immediate postwar years; that we should return to the principles of Roosevelt's and Churchill's Atlantic Charter; that a continental-arms agreement should be adopted to stabilize the military confrontation in Europe at sharply lower force-levels; that the US ought to announce some unilateral defense expenditure reductions as a confidence-building measure; and that we should move steadily to integrate the Soviet Union into an increasingly interdependent global order through economic and environmental cooperation and by scientific and cultural exchanges. None of this is objectionable, of course. It's just that it's not what one might expect from someone of the author's experience and stature. A sustained decrescendo that induces not boldness, but boredom.

Pub Date: Sept. 1st, 1989
Publisher: Simon & Schuster