Legitimacy and Force, Volumes One and Two are the state papers of Jeane J. Kirkpatrick as the United States Permanent Representative to the United Nations. The volumes feature all of the ambassador's UN and congressional testimonies, addresses, speeches and statements and a broad selection of speeches on international affairs and human rights. Together they present a lucid and comprehensive account of the position of one of America's most controversial UN representatives.
Volume One is oriented around themes of democratic societies and undemocratic systems, human rights and political obligations. Kirkpatrick examines the nature and legitimacy of democracy and the illegitimate nature of undemocratic nations. She also offers poignant commentary on the presidential election of 1980 and what the "Reagan phenomenon" has meant to the United States and the West.
Volume Two offers Kirkpatrick's formal remarks on nations and nation-building. She focuses on Grenada, Poland, Afghanistan, Nicaragua, and the Soviet Union. She provides a particularly trenchant analysis of Israel: the Camp David accords, the assault on Israel inside the United Nations, and on the Middle East in general. Essential reading for everyone interested in the policymaking arena, these volumes exemplify Kirkpatrick's articulate conceptual underpinning of present-day American foreign policy.
These volumes, far from the usual government position papers, range widely and personally over the major international issues of our times. They are amplified in essays and articles written by Dr. Kirkpatrick for special occasions not related to specific UN work. In addition, the volumes contain crucial papers that were written after her resignation from the UN ambassadorship-and hence reflect Kirkpatrick's current interests and persuasions.