Presentation on theme: "Major Aspects of US Foreign Policy by Sigrid Brevik Wangsness 27 September 2012."— Presentation transcript:
Major Aspects of US Foreign Policy by Sigrid Brevik Wangsness 27 September 2012
Outline Introduction: Who Decides US foreign Policy? Major Trends / Events in US Foreign Policy The War on Terror Responses to Current US Foreign Policy The Obama Administration’s Foreign Policy
Who Decides US Foreign Policy? The President has several powers that make him the single most important figure in US foreign policy today, yet these powers are limited by Congress and other important institutions and lobby groups.
OVERVIEW Major Trends in US foreign Policy 1.Expansionism 18th century and earlier. 19th century 2.Isolationism The leading principle until WW II 3.Interventionism/ Internationalism Esp. after WW II, but also earlier 4. Unilateralism The USA acting on its own 5. Moralism vs. realism
Major Trends and Events in US Foreign Policy Expansionism and isolationism 1776:Independence. Neutrality in foreign affairs The first century after Independence: - Acquired the whole continent; expansion into Mexico in the 1840s. “Manifest Destiny” - Avoidance of war with European powers; “no entangling alliances”. 1823: The Monroe Doctrine
Major Trends and Events in US Foreign Policy Interventionism vs. isolationism - 1890s-1917: Intervention in Cuba, Puerto Rico, the Philippines and several Latin American countries - Involved in WWI in 1917 - Return to isolationism in the inter- war years: The Senate rejected the League of Nations
Major Trends and Events in US Foreign Policy Interventionism and internationalism - Involved in WWII when attacked Since WWII no more isolationism - From 1945 to 1990: Cold War fight communism all over the world 1947: The Truman Doctrine. The Marshall Plan
Major Trends and Events in US Foreign Policy Moralism and realism Origin of the USA: a refuge for all people a model of democracy a sense of moral superiority a unique mission 1917: “Make the world safe for democracy” 1947: Humanitarian concerns/ economic revival
Major Trends and Events in US Foreign Policy 1950s/60s: The Age of Containment Stop communist expansion (”red scare”) 1970s/80s (post-Vietnam period ): Détente Less tension/improved relations 1972: China recognized (Nixon) Better relations with the Soviet Union: The SALT Treaty.
Major Trends and Events in US Foreign Policy The Reagan era: US-USSR relations From “evil empire” to the INF Treaty. START. Gorbachev. Super power negotiations over nuclear weapons. US unilateral actions: Grenada, Nicaragua, Libya: The “world policeman” helping peoples threatened by anti- American regimes…
Major Trends and Events in US Foreign Policy End of the Cold War: 1990s 1989 The Fall of the Wall 1991:The Gulf War. Backed by the U.N. The US and the USSR on the same side. George Bush Sr. - Disintegration of the Soviet Union - The USA as the only superpower
Major Trends and Events in US Foreign Policy The Balkans: 1995: Diplomacy (Clinton) and NATO bombing to get a peace agreement in Bosnia. 1999: The Kosovo War. NATO. Poland, the Czech Republic and Hungary joined NATO despite Soviet opposition.
Major Trends and Events in US Foreign Policy Clinton's world diplomacy in the Middle East, China, Africa, Russia, Northern Ireland. Until Sept. 2001: The new Bush Administration's foreign policy: Review its international commitments = refusal to sign many international treaties. Signs of a new isolationism
Major Trends and Events in US Foreign Policy 11 Sep. 2001:Terrorist attacks on N.Y.& Wash. D.C. The USA’s global war on terrorism Support by the UN and NATO 2001: Bombing of Afghanistan to take Bin Laden 2003: Invasion of Iraq – a national security issue? No UN resolution. Antagonized many old allies, but support from the UK, Spain, Portugal. Massive public protests.
The War on Terror 11 September 2001: To what extent did 9/11 change US foreign policy? Why such an enormous impact? Like the Cold War, the Iraq War was seen as a battle between democracy and tyranny, good and evil Short-term impact (immediate reactions)
The War on Terror The Bush Doctrine: 1.Unilateralism 2.Pre-emptive warfare 3.Preventative action/ measures 4. Regime Change
The War on Terror The War against the Taliban Why considered necessary? The War against Iraq (2003) The “coalition of the willing” Why so controversial?
Response to the War on Terror A. Reactions from Abroad From sympathy to strong anti-Americanism: Why? Arrogance of power Invasion of an independent nation: lack of progress in the war Deaths and destruction
Response to the War on Terror A. Reactions from Abroad Credibility gap 1. Historical inconsistencies 2. Lack of trust: no WMD 3. Assumed moral superiority vs. torture, breaking human rights (Guantanamo)
Response to the War on Terror B. Reactions from the American Public George Bush’s loss of popularity: polarization The costs of the Iraq war: both in human and material terms The public misled? The Patriot Act: abuse of power by the government? Security vs. liberty To what extent has the war on terror been a success?
The Obama Administration’s Foreign Policy Obama’s achievements in foreign policy? Obama’s failures in foreign policy? What does Hillary Clinton highlight as successes? How does she describe Obama as “foreign policy president”? Prospects for the Obama Administration?