Huntington has been hired as a consultant to the National Security [WORD ILLEGIBLE] his long time friend and sometime coauthor, Zbigniew Brzezinski, President Carter's national security affairs adviser.
Several Carter administration officials said they understood Huntington's review memorandum - a "PRM" in the alphabet jargon of the new administration - will deal with questions of Soviet strength and intentions that have been the subject of intense debate in the intelligence and defense communities in recent months.
A spokesman for Brzezinski confirmed that Huntington's assisgnment will involve Soviet-American relations in the political and military spheres and long-range planning. The spokesman declined to be more specific. Huntington declined to be interviewed to discuss his new assignment.
Huntington has been hired as a consultant for six months. One source said this might be renewed or extended.
Administration officials say Carter wants to serious re-examine that basic premises of American foregn policies generally, and that a review of the Soviet-American relationship "from the ground up" is an important part of this re-examination.
Huntington is regarded as a brilliant political scientist, even by libere's who often dispute his conclusions. He has made controversial statements to the past that have convinced some liberals that he is a menacing figure. [WORD ILLEGIBLE] he attributed [WORD ILLEGIBLE] trouble during the last [WORD ILLEGIBLE] to "an excess of democratic - it wasn't the misdeeds of Presidents, but the unruly, unwise elector to that caused the problems, he [WORD ILLEGIBLE]
In published statements on defense policy, Huntington has taken the position that the United States must maintain parity with the Soviet Union - that strategic "sufficiency" is not enough. A committee of the Massachusetts Democratic Party that he led recommended last year that the mobile land-based missile, a controversial idea in the intelligence and defense communities. The committee cruise missiles and a slowdown of the B-1 bomer program.
Reportedly with Brzexinski's backing, Hungtington was a leading candidate for the post of assistant secretary of defense for international security affairs. But Brown chose Washington attorney David E. McGiffert instead.