By Hans J .Morgenthau, University of Chicago
America's post-Cold War foreign policy is still in flux. Scholars, statesmen, and observers continue to debate America's proper role in the world and how best to protect and promote U.S. interests. It appears that the U.S. is in the midst of a geopolitical pivot from a Euro-centric policy to a focus on the Asia-Pacific region, while it continues to forge a strategy to combat Islamic terrorism and its state sponsors. What better time to reflect on a masterful lecture delivered in 1958 by one of the greatest foreign policy thinkers, Hans J. Morgenthau.
Morgenthau, the author of the seminal book Politics Among Nations and many other works on international politics, spoke at the Naval War College about fundamentals of foreign policy. The main themes of his lecture are still relevant to today's world.
The problems of international politics, he noted, are the result not of "ephemeral historic configurations but rather stem from the very essence of human nature." Nations still struggle for power, which...