May 15, 2008

News & Opinion: BusinessWeek Review of The Post-American World

By: 800-CEO-READ @ 5:00 PM – Filed under: Management & Workplace Culture

If you enjoy reading both history and business books, check out BusinessWeek's recent review of what might be the next book on your pile. The Post-American World is Fareed Zakaria's analysis of the new era we're entering, where America will not have the global dominance it has experienced since the end of the Cold War. Here's a brief excerpt from the review by Stanley Reed:
Zakaria, a native of India and the editor of Newsweek International, argues that the U.S. has squandered opportunities in the past few years. "[It] has had an extraordinary hand to play in global politics--the best of any country in history. Yet by almost any measure--problems solved, success achieved, institutions built, reputation enhanced--Washington has played this hand badly." As a result, he argues, the U.S. is now an enfeebled superpower, and anti-American sentiment is high "everywhere from Great Britain to Malaysia." What went wrong? Zakaria says the preeminence of the U.S. following the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991 has "made Washington careless, arrogant, and lazy." He compares U.S. foreign policy to General Motors' (GM) 1970s business strategy, "an approach driven by internal factors with little sense of the broader environment in which it was operating." But, Zakaria says, it's far from certain that the U.S. will suffer from what he calls "the rise of the rest." In fact, America may well profit from the change if it plays its cards right. "The world is going America's way," he says. "Countries are becoming more open, market-friendly, and democratic." Even most of Africa, considered hopeless not long ago, is making major strides, he says.
Read the review here.