Having studied the career of former National Security Advisor Zbigniew Brzezinski for some years now, it is hard not to characterise him as one of the wise men of American foreign policy. He was a fascinating, engaging, methodical individual but also a combative and controversial figure. With his passing on Friday at the age of […]

On December 15, 1978, the United States and the People’s Republic of China issued a joint communiqué that established diplomatic relations between the two nations. Although an historic achievement for then President Jimmy Carter, the rapprochement in U.S.-Sino relations came to have a significant impact on the administration’s foreign policy agenda. Significant differences emerged during […]

Based near the University of Maryland, I approached researching at NARA II with much trepidation having heard accounts from others who had encountered problems during their visit. For my experience, I encountered few problems in what was my final archival research visit as a PhD student. My next archival visit, will be as a post […]

When the Carter administration entered office on January 20, 1977 there was growing speculation in the newspaper press that President Carter’s two key foreign policy advisors, Secretary of State Cyrus Vance and National Security Advsior Zbigniew Brzezinski, were on course to clash with one another over the course and nature of the administration’s foreign policy […]

Based about ten miles north east of Atlanta, Georgia, the Jimmy Carter library houses twenty-seven million pages of materials relating to the Carter presidency.The library is one of three interconnected buildings located on site, the other two are the museum and the Carter Center, a not-for-profit human rights organisation run by the president. A colleague […]

Over the past year during my various trips to the United States I’ve been fortunate enough to conduct seven oral histories with former members of the Carter administration. Oral history is a common form of research and I am luckier than some of my fellow PhD students in having the ability to do this. The experience […]

When Jimmy Carter became president, he declared his intention to forge ahead with a new Strategic Arms Limitation Treaty (SALT II) with the Soviet Union, stating: “we will move this year a step toward our ultimate goal–the elimination of all nuclear weapons from this Earth. We urge all other people to join us, for success […]