Zbigniew Brzezinski dies at 89

Zbigniew Brzezinski, the hawkish Polish-born Cold War strategist and former top aide to USA president Jimmy Carter who influenced key policy decisions on Afghanistan, China and the Middle East, has died, his family said.

Mika Brzezinski made an announcement through Instagram, saying that her farther - a renowned political scientist and a diplomat - has "passed away peacefully". She did not give the cause of death.

Mika Brzezinski hailed the man known as Chief to his family as "the most inspiring, loving and devoted father any girl could ever have". One of his least celebrated: He argued successfully for a helicopter mission to rescue 52 American hostages in Iran, a mission that ended in failure.

Brzezinski's climb to the top of the foreign policy community began at Canada's McGill University, where he earned degrees in economics and political science. Three months later, U.S. -Soviet accord to curb conventional forces in Europe.

But some critics say he helped spawn al-Qaeda by working through the Central Intelligence Agency to arm and support anti-Soviet jihadists in Afghanistan.

His hardline stance led Pravda, the Soviet Communist Party newspaper, to denounce him as a "foe of detente".

In a statement, Mr Carter called Mr Brzezinski "a superb public servant" as well as "brilliant, dedicated and loyal".

"Rosalynn (Carter's wife) and I are saddened", he said in a statement.

Barack Obama says that he was one of several presidents "who benefited from his wisdom and counsel". -China relations and in USA national security and human rights.

In May 1978, Brzezinski paid his first visit to China to lay the groundwork for the normalization of the relationship between China and the United States.

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Brzezinski's view of the Soviet Union may have been colored by his childhood experiences.

Born in Warsaw and educated in Canada and the United States, Brzezinski was an acknowledged expert in Communism when he attracted the attention of US policymakers. When the communists took over Poland at the end of World War Two, the family remained in the West.

Brzezinski taught in Harvard's government department until 1959, when he moved to Columbia University.

Brzezinski died Friday at the age of 89.

To former President George H.W. Bush, Brzezinski's "command of foreign affairs made him both an instrumental architect of key policies - and an influential voice in key policy debates".

Despite his lifelong antipathy to Soviet communism, he joined Defense Secretary Brown in spearheading an unsuccessful drive to win Senate approval for the 1979 SALT-2 arms control accord.

Brzezinski continued to engage in spirited public advocacy after leaving the White House and joining the Center for Strategic and International Studies as counselor and trustee.

He wrote frequent opinion articles for newspapers and published several books. On the NewsHour in 2012, he discussed his book about a shift in global power with the NewsHour's Jeffrey Brown.

In February, Brzezinski wondered: "Does America have a foreign policy right now?" He was sharply critical of Bush's "war on terror" and the 2003 invasion of Iraq.

Despite his retirement from US politics into academia, Brzezinski remained a sharp-eyed observer of successive USA administrations.

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