Architects of Power: Roosevelt, Eisenhower, and the American Century
The United States is not a preternaturally inward-looking nation, and isolation is not the natural disposition of Americans. The real question is not whether Americans are prone to isolation or engagement, but how their engagement with the world has evolved, how events have conspired to make the United States toward world power, and how these developments have been guided by political leadership. Indeed, the great debates on foreign affairs in American history have not been about whether to have debates on foreign affairs; they have been between and among the competing visions of American influence in the world.
In Architects of Power, Philip Terzian examines two public figures in the 20th century who personify, in their lives, careers and public philosophies, the rise of the United States of America to global leadership: Franklin D. Roosevelt and Dwight D. Eisenhower. Terzian reveals how both men recognized and acted on the global threats of their time and questions whether America can rise to the same challenges today. Denied access to a clear vision of the past, our knowledge of the present and perspective on the future may be dangerously myopic. Without a window into the stricken world that Roosevelt inhabited, and Eisenhower understood, we are less likely to see the perils and challenges of the world we have inherited.