LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) — His name wasn’t the easiest to say or or spell but Zbigniew Brzezinski was called on — and often — by Democratic administrations for his counsel. He died Friday at the age of 89.
His daughter, Mika, co-host of the MSNBC show “Morning Joe,” announced the death Friday afternoon.
Mike and co-host Joe Scarborough, recently announced their engagement.
Her dad, a well-respected political scientist, advised the John F. Kennedy campaign on foreign affairs.
Brzezinski served as a special counselor to President Lyndon Johnson.
The fiery Warsaw-born Brzezinski was probably best known as President Jimmy Carter’s National Security Advisor from 1977 – 1981.
Under President Reagan, he also worked at a member of the President’s Warfare Commission from 1987-88.
A life-long Democrat, he broke with party ranks to endorse George H.W. Bush and served on his National Security Council-Defense Department Commission as well as his Foreign Intelligence Advisory Board.
He was an outspoken critic of George W. Bush, especially on his handling of post 9-11 foreign affairs.
Brzezinski was back in the Democratic column in 2007 when he met then candidate Barack Obama and called him “one of our most outstanding thinkers.”
After leaving politics, Brzezinski lectured at schools like Johns Hopkins University’s School of Advanced International Studies.
He also appeared on many of the daily or Sunday talk shows — including opposite his daughter on “Morning Joe.”
Brzezinski , who became a U.S. citizen in 1958, was one of the first, if not the first, talking head to predict decades before that the Soviet Union would dissolve. He was also one of the first democrats to sign on and openly support LBJ’s civil rights legislation the the Great Society social programs.
Behind the scenes, he worked on pushing the Solidarity movement in his native Poland even though thousand of miles away.
Along with David Rockefeller, the two co-founded the Trilateral Commission and served as director from 1973-1976. The group was made up of politicians and business leaders from the US, Japan and and Western Europe, deemed the three (hence tri) most industrially advanced regions of the world.