Zbigniew Brzezinski and Osama bin Laden 1981
Zbigniew Kazimierz Brzezinski (born March 28, 1928) is a Polish American political scientist, geostrategist, and statesman who served as United States National Security Advisor to President Jimmy Carter from 1977 to 1981.
Major foreign policy events during his term of office included the normalization of relations with the People's Republic of China (and the severing of ties with the Republic of China); the signing of the second Strategic Arms Limitation Treaty (SALT II); the brokering of the Camp David Accords; the transition of Iran from an important U.S. client state to an anti-Western Islamic Republic, encouraging dissidents in Eastern Europe and emphasizing certain human rights in order to undermine the influence of the Soviet Union; the financing of the mujahideen in Afghanistan in response to the Soviet deployment of forces there (allegedly either to help deter a Russian invasion, or to deliberately increase the chance of such an intervention occurring – or for both contradictory reasons simultaneously being embraced by separate U.S. officials) and the arming of these rebels to counter the Soviet invasion; and the signing of the Torrijos-Carter Treaties relinquishing overt U.S. control of the Panama Canal after 1999.
After the September 11 attacks in 2001, Brzezinski was criticized – largely by the same people who had wholeheartedly supported his views and decisions – for his role in the formation of the Afghan mujaheddin network, some of whom later formed the Taliban and al Qaeda. He countered that blame ought to be laid at the feet of the Soviet Union's invasion, which radicalized the relatively stable Muslim society. However, Brzezinski is also accused of having "knowingly increased the probability that they (the Soviet Union) would invade" by supporting Afghan rebels before the invasion and drawing the Soviets into an "Afghan trap." (read more)