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U.S. Foreign Policy

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The Goals of U.S. Foreign Policy U.S. foreign policy seeks to promote, protect, and project the foreign policy agenda and interests of the United States. There are three goals in order to meet this objective: 1. National Security 2. Economic Prosperity 3. International Humanitarian Policies or Creating a Better World

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U.S. National Security Policy The chief purpose of the nation’s foreign policy is protection of the United States’ security in an often hostile world. The world is anarchic, chaotic, and unpredictable. To protect the nation’s security, the United States has built an enormous military apparatus and complex array of intelligence gathering institutions. The United States seeks supreme influence in the world as the sole superpower of the international system as the U.S. seeks to remain the nation-state in the world with the most power. The U.S. seeks glory for its deeds and stewardship of the international system.

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The Cold War In the aftermath of World War II, the United States developed a new security policy known as deterrence, the development and maintenance of military strength as a means of discouraging attack and “containing” the growing power of the Soviet Union. During the Cold War (the period of struggle between the United States and the former Soviet Union between the late 1940s and about 1990), some argued that the United States should attack the Soviets before it was too late. A policy of deterrence not only requires the possession of large military forces but also requires the nation pursuing such a policy to convince political adversaries that it is willing to fight. Deterrence does assume certainty and rationality, which may not be appropriate to current security threats.

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Cold War Proxy Wars 1945-1949 Chinese Civil War 1946-1949 Greek Civil War 1948-1949 Berlin Blockade 1950-1953 Korean War 1954-1975 Vietnam War 1961-1962 Cuba 1967-1975 Cambodia Civil War 1973 Chile military junta 1973-1989 Middle East conflict 1977-1978 Ethiopia 1978-1992 Soviet occupation of Afghanistan 1976-1988 Angola Civil War 1980-1992 Salvadoran Civil War 1979-1990 Nicaraguan Civil War

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Status of World Nuclear Forces 2015* Country Deployed Strategic Deployed Nonstrategic Reserve/ Nondeployed Military Stockpile Total Inventory Russia 1,780 a 0b0b 2,720 c 4,500 7,500 d United States 1,900 e 180 f 2,620 g 4,700 h 7,200 i France 290 j n.a.10 j 300 China 0 k ?k?k 250 250 k United Kingdom 150 l n.a.65215215 l Israel 0n.a.80 80 m Pakistan 0n.a.100-120 100-120 n India 0n.a.90-110 90-110 o North Korea 0n.a.<10 <10 p Total: q ~4,120~180~6,000~10,300 ~15,700

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Evolution of U.S. Security Policy: Preemption It is difficult to deter groups or rogue leaders in these cases because they may be willing to accept or may not fully grasp the political costs of their action. To counter these new security threats, the United States has shifted to a policy of preemption, in which the United States displays its willingness to strike first to prevent an enemy attack. The Bush Doctrine – President George W. Bush’s administration, foreign policy was the agenda’s centerpiece after the 9/11 attacks, which reaffirmed his determination to be an effective commander in chief, and the public approval of these actions remained high for a significant period of time. The president announced the Bush Doctrine, a foreign policy based on the idea that the United States should take preemptive action against national security threats. Drone Strikes: Drones have been the Obama administration’s tool of choice for taking out militants outside of Iraq and Afghanistan. Drones aren’t the exclusive weapon – traditional airstrikes and other attacks have also been reported. But by one estimate, 95 percent of targeted killings since 9/11 have been conducted by drones. Among the benefits of drones: they don’t put American troops in harm’s way.

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Other U.S. Foreign Policy objectives Economic Prosperity: The United States international economic policies are intended to expand employment in the United States, maintain access to foreign energy supplies at a reasonable cost, promote foreign investment in the United States, and lower the prices Americans pay for goods and services. American trade policy promotes goods and services abroad. International Humanitarian Policies: A third goal of American foreign policy is to make the world a better place for all its inhabitants. The main forms of policy that address this goal are international environmental policy, international human rights policy, and international peacekeeping.

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The Presidency and its impact on U.S. Foreign Policy Presidents have always been domestic politicians, and foreign policy has been treated as an extension of the former. For example, during President George W. Bush’s administration, foreign policy was the agenda’s centerpiece after the 9/11 attacks, which reaffirmed his determination to be an effective commander in chief, and the public approval of these actions remained high for a significant period of time.

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Instruments of American Foreign Policy The United States tools include diplomacy, the United Nations, the international monetary structure, economic aid, collective security, and military deterrence. The United Nations – Sometimes the UN has been a convenient cover for U.S. foreign policy goals. Its ability to serve the United States as a foreign policy tool has been underestimated, because it has few powers and no armed forces to implement its decisions. Collective Security – The treaties created the Organization of American States, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, and others to defend the member nations against any armed attack. In addition, American entered into a number a bilateral treaties (treaties made between two nations) for national security purposes. The United States is viewed as a security producer, and its allies as security consumers.

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Lecture – California Politics What is an initiative? – A ballot proposition enacted by the initiative process may alter the state constitution, or amend the ordinary laws of the state, or do both. An initiative is brought about by writing a proposed law as a petition, and submitting the petition to the California Attorney General. The initiative process allows citizens to go around the Legislature and propose laws. What is an referendum? – In California a vote on a measure referred to voters by the legislature is a mandatory referendum. The State Legislature may pass an act which is signed by the Governor of California, proposing a state constitutional amendment, which is then submitted to the voters as a referendum at the next statewide election. What is a recall election? – A recall election is a procedure by which voters can remove an elected official from office through a direct vote before his or her term has ended. In California, voters may recall elected, statewide officers from office, which includes governors, members of the State Legislature, members of the California judiciary, including the state Supreme Court.

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