The Inevitability of Tragedy: Henry Kissinger and His World

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The Inevitability of Tragedy is a fascinating intellectual biography of Henry Kissinger that examines his unique role in government through his ideas. It analyzes the continuing controversies surrounding Kissinger's policies in such places as Vietnam and Chile by offering an understanding of his definition of realism; his seemingly amoral belief that foreign affairs must be conducted through a balance of power; and his "un-American" view that promoting democracy is most likely to result in repeated defeats for the United States.

Barry Gewen places Kissinger's ideas in a European context by tracing them through his experience as a refugee from Nazi Germany and exploring the links between his notions of power and those of his mentor, Hans Morgenthau, the father of realism, as well as those of two other German-Jewish émigrés who shared his concerns about the weaknesses of democracy: Leo Strauss and Hannah Arendt.

Publication Date: 
April 28, 2020