Restraint: A New Foundation for U.S. Grand Strategy

Grantees in this story

The United States has grown incapable of moderating its ambitions in international politics. Carnegie Corporation grantee Barry Posen argues this point in his latest book, Restraint: A New Foundation for U.S. Grand Strategy. Posen writes that since the collapse of Soviet power, the U.S. has pursued a grand strategy that has tended to overreach, generating a host of failures and encountering many unexpected difficulties along the way. For a preview, read Posen’s op-ed  in Politico Magazine or an analysis in Boston Review, and watch a lecture on the topic delivered at the Cato Institute, and another talk carried on C-SPAN and sponsored by The American Conservative, The American Prospect, and George Washington University’s Institute for Security and Conflict.

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Posen, Ford International Professor of Political Science, and Director, Security Studies Program, MIT, makes an urgent case for restraint in the future use of U.S. military strength. After setting out the political implications of this guiding principle, Posen sketches the appropriate military forces and posture that would support such a strategy. Posen’s alternative for military strategy focuses on protecting U.S. global access through naval, air, and space power, while freeing the United States from most of the relationships that require the permanent stationing of U.S. forces overseas.