Zbigniew Brzezinski served as United States National Security Advisor to United States President Jimmy Carter. In his 1970s book, Between Two Ages, he made the case for the formation of what would later be known as the Trilateral Commission, which he co-founded along with David Rockefeller.

Zbigniew Brzezinski, son of Polish diplomat Tadeusz Brzezinski, is known to bear wide open resentment against Russia[1] and considers his hostile anti-Soviet foreign policy strategy during the Carter administration to be among his crowning achievements as National Security Advisor.

History Edit

Zbigniew Brzezinski was born in Warsaw, Poland, on March 28, 1928. His family, members of the nobility (or "szlachta" in Polish), bore the Trąby coat of arms and hailed from Brzeżany in Galicia. This town is thought to be the source of the family name. Brzezinski's father was Tadeusz Brzeziński, a Polish diplomat who was posted to Germany from 1931 to 1935; Zbigniew Brzezinski thus spent some of his earliest years witnessing the rise of the Nazis. From 1936 to 1938, Tadeusz Brzeziński was posted to the Soviet Union during Joseph Stalin's Great Purge.

In 1938, Tadeusz Brzeziński was posted to Canada. In 1939, the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact was agreed to by Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union; subsequently the two powers invaded Poland. The 1945 Yalta Conference between the Allies allotted Poland to the Soviet sphere of influence, meaning Brzezinski's family could not safely return to their country.


"Szlachta" derives from the Old German word "slahta" (now "(Adels) Geschlecht", "(noble) family"), much as many other Polish words pertaining to the nobility derive from German words — e.g., the Polish "rycerz" ("knight", cognate of the German "Ritter") and the Polish "herb" ("coat of arms", from the German "Erbe", "heritage"). Poles of the 17th century assumed that "szlachta" was from the German "schlachten" ("to slaughter" or "to butcher"); also suggestive is the German "Schlacht" ("battle"). Early Polish historians thought the term may have derived from the name of the legendary proto-Polish chief, Lech, mentioned in Polish and Czech writings.
Herb Traby

Trąby coat of arms

Kindred terms that might be applied to an early Polish nobleman were "rycerz" (from German Ritter, "knight"), the Latin "nobilis" ("noble"; plural: "nobiles") and "możny" ("magnate", "oligarch"; plural: "możni"). Some powerful Polish nobles were referred to as "magnates" (Polish singular: "magnat", plural: "magnaci"). It has to be remembered however, that not all knights were nobles.

Today the word szlachta in the Polish language denotes any noble class in the world. In broadest meaning, it can also denote some non-hereditary honorary knighthoods granted today by some European monarchs. Even some 19th century non-noble land owners would be called szlachta by courtesy or error as they owned manorial estates but were not noble by birth. In the narrow sense it denotes the old-Commonwealth nobility.[2]

Family Edit

  • Mika Brzezinski, daughter of Zbigniew Brzezinski. She is the co-host of the regular morning program, Morning Joe, along with Joe Scarborough. Zbigniew Brzezinski makes regular guest appearances on this program to comment on actual events.
  • Mark Brzezinski, son of Zbigniew Brzezinski, lawyer and foreign policy expert. He currently serves as foreign policy expert to President Barack Obama.
  • Ian Brzezinski, son of Zbigniew Brzezinski. He was a foreign policy advisor of John McCain during the 2008 Presidential Elections. He is currently a Principal at Booz Allen Hamilton.

Notable works Edit

Title Date ISBN
Between Two Ages 1970 0313234981 (ISBN-10)
The Grand Chessboard 1998 0465027261 (ISBN-10)

References Edit

  1. Google Books: The Mighty Wurlitzer: How The CIA Played America, p147, "There were also efforts to sow dissensions within the ranks of the communist delegations. Zbigniew Brzezinski (the son of a Polish diplomat) walked openly among its Russian residents deliberately bumping into them and saying in Russian, with a heavy Polish accent, "Out of my way, Russian pig!" in a deliberate attempt to stir ill feeling between the Russian and Polish contingents."
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