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Chapter 16: Foreign Policy and Democracy

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1 Chapter 16: Foreign Policy and Democracy

2 Foreign Policy and the American Founding
Foreign policy has always been important to American politics. The United States’ weak position in world affairs and its concern that European powers might come to dominate the young country was a primary impetus to consolidating the thirteen states into a strong union.

3 The Values of American Foreign Policy
1796 Farewell Address, President George Washington left American politics with a series of warnings. In terms of foreign policy, Washington encouraged the United States to remain independent in pursuit of its interests in the world. Avoid permanent alliances. Gave voice to policy of Neutrality

4 Foreign Policy vs. Domestic Issues
United States has pursued a foreign policy plagued by the tension between the need for a strong defense traditional republicanism the hope to be “isolationist” from the world.

5 The Decline of Isolationism
In the 19th century United States generally followed Washington’s lead Foreign policy concerns primarily in North America and the Western Hemisphere.

6 Early Foreign Policy Decisions
The American policy of “Manifest Destiny” led the United States to engage in foreign policy (war and diplomacy) with Native Americans, Canada, and Mexico in its quest to dominate North America. The Monroe Doctrine stated the United States’ special interest in the international politics of the Western Hemisphere. Not officially sanctioned by Congress in law.

7 Early 1900’s The early 20th Century posed challenges to American isolationism. Increased international commerce enmeshed America in world affairs. America’s increased economic strength also developed an increased military strength.

8 Neutrality and the World
Despite these changes, isolationism continued to temper America’s role in the world. The United States remained neutral for much of World War I. After the war, the United States retreated from the world, refusing to join the League of Nations. Even at the outset of World War II, the United States sought to maintain its neutrality.

9 The Emergence of a World Power
After World War II and with the beginning of the Cold War, the United States became a world power. Created a full-fledged diplomatic corps in 1946 It entered the United Nations. Use of Peacekeepers Security Council It helped create the World Bank and the IMF. It engaged in collective security agreements like Rio Treaty (1947), NATO (1949), ANZUS (1951), SEATO (1954)

10 Two World Superpowers The Cold War created a “bipolar” world in which the United States sought to halt the spread of communism. Fighting the Cold War led the United States to strengthen its commitment to multilateralism and engaging the world generally.

11 Who Makes and Shapes Foreign Policy?
There are three principle governmental actors or institutions that make foreign policy: the president the bureaucracy the Congress

12 President – Commander in Chief
The President of the United States has an unusual amount of influence in foreign policy making compared to his influence in the domestic realm. Executive Agreements Negotiate Treaties Appoint Ambassadors

13 Executive Departments
Several executive departments and agencies advise the president and Congress on creating and implementing foreign policy: the Department of State the Department of Defense the Joint Chiefs of Staff the Central Intelligence Agency the National Security Council the Department of Homeland Security

14 Congress Congress also influences foreign policy
Power to declare war (5 times), role in making policy and funding programs, and the Senate’s role in ratifying treaties Congress also influences foreign policy Often competing with the White House.


16 Congress - Key Congressional committees in the area of foreign policy:
Senate Foreign Relations Committee Armed Services Committee Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee House Foreign Affairs and Homeland Security Committee Most Presidents are domestic oriented.

17 Interest groups businesses defense contractors
Ranging from businesses defense contractors ethnic interest groups – Jewish groups organized labor environmental groups – WTO protests human rights organizations – Amnesty International All seek to shape American defense, diplomatic, and trade policies.

18 Media Plays important roles in informing and shaping public perceptions of the world American citizens have relatively little knowledge of world politics.

19 The Instruments of Modern American Foreign Policy
Foreign policy making is composed of several tools, institutions, and sources of influence. Key tools of foreign policy include: Diplomacy the United Nations the International Monetary Structure Economic Aid Collective Security Military Deterrence

20 State Department Through the Department of State and the foreign service, the United States conducts foreign policy by maintaining friendly relations with the governments of other countries. Because such cooperation involves politics and trade-offs, American presidents frequently have been suspicious of diplomacy.

21 United Nations Established in 1945, the United Nations has served as a venue for negotiating international conflicts and seeking peaceful solutions. Despite some notable conflicts, the United States has frequently relied on the UN to accomplish its foreign-policy aims. Security Council or Peacekeeping.

22 Economics American foreign-policy aims are also achieved through economic solutions. Institutions like the International Monetary Fund (IMF) (short term loans) and the World Bank (long term loans) stabilize the world economy and facilitate international exchange. Through direct economic aid, the United States can provide assistance to needy countries and shore up their political position in the world. Also, economic sanctions.

23 Collective Security Through collective security arrangements and bilateral treaties with individual countries, the United States seeks to cooperate and have a somewhat shared fate with its partner countries. The United States seems to share the largest part of the security burden in most of these relationships. Rio Treaty (1947), NATO (1949), ANZUS (1951), SEATO (1954)


25 Cold War - Policies America’s high levels of military spending are elements of an overall strategy of military deterrence The United States purportedly seeks “peace through strength.” Containment, Military Industrial Complex, Mutually Assured Destruction, Détente

26 American Foreign Policy after the Cold War
The Cold War created a relatively stable and predictable pattern of international politics The fall of the Soviet Union unleashed a great deal of uncertainty in world affairs and, particularly, American foreign policy.

27 New Global Approaches Current foreign policy issues today include,
Nuclear Proliferation National Defense Terrorism International Trade World Trade Organization - Trade Barriers NAFTA type agreements Global Warming Kyoto Protocol

28 Terrorism One of the emerging complexities of the post-Cold War era is the problem of international terrorism.

29 Bush Doctrine – Preemptive Action
In its most recent war with Iraq the Bush administration evinced a greater willingness to “go it alone” if need be. The United States went to Iraq with some allies (most notably Great Britain). Unlike the first Gulf War, however, the coalition built by this administration reflected a partial return to a more unilateralist American foreign policy in which the United States would act even in defiance of world opinion.

30 Security - providing for the national defense
Public concern over the Patriot Act reminds us that the trade-offs between - maintaining a strong presence in the world - providing for the national defense - maintaining republican liberty are difficult indeed.



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