Foreign Affairs Of America Essay, Research Paper
Foreign Affairs of America
Thesis: Intervention should be the United States foreign policy because it increases our protection, has worked in the past, and in proven to be the best plan for the future.
I. Our Protection
A. U.S. Citizens in the U.S.
B. U.S. Citizens in foreign countries
II. Past Aid
III. Future Aid
Foreign Affairs of America
Many critics are opposed to global intervention and think the money spent could be much better spent in America. They think isolation is the ideal foreign policy because foreign affairs don?t concern us. They have also told us we have done more harm than good, and it is time to concentrate on our own people. People who believe in isolation are clearly ignorant to what the United States of America accomplishes. By helping and rebuilding other nations we gain protection from them attacking us and they become our allies. It also is our moral responsibility to help people in need as the only superpower. Another thing is it protects American citizens and industries that are in those foreign countries. Intervention should be the United States foreign policy because it increases our protection, has worked in the past, and in proven to be the best plan for the future.
The first reason intervention should be the roue we take is it adds to our own defense. By helping other countries that are in trouble economically, politically, or militarily, we become allies with them and are less susceptible to attack from them or anyone else that is allied to them. Peter Shraeder stated ? It contributes to the broad cooperative relations which permit the presence of U.S. facilities or access by U.S. forces to host country facilities in time of threat to mutual interests thereby reducing the cost of U.S. defense? (100). Also as our allies they will then support us if we need their help with something later. William Schneider Jr. says ?Economic and Military aid programs are effective and enhance our national security? (97). He also said, ?Foreign assistance is one of the most cost effective means at our disposal for enhancing our national security? (98). Ignorant people just see the billions of dollars being spend on foreign aid assume we are doing the wrong thing, however; foreign aid actually lowers our defense spending. President Reagan said that foreign aid improves our own defense. ?In his 1985 State of the Union Address Reagan said ?dollar for dollar, our security assistance contributes as much to global security as our own defense budget,?? (6). Shreider concurred that foreign aid also helped the United States. He added, ?Security assistance contributes to the security of the U.S. and at the same time lowers defense costs? (100). The experts have all said that increasing the United States? global involvement lowers defense costs and increases our defense, so there is no down side.
By making foreign countries in turmoil a secure place again we also protect the United States citizens living there. One of the major concerns during the crisis at Grenada was ?There were 1000 U.S. citizens living on Grenada? (143). If there is a strong economy, stable government, and peace they will have a much better chance of surviving. Also helping these countries protects industries of the United States over there. This allows the business to prosper and increase the United States? economy. Shraeder said ?It provides to the U.S. and foreign buyer the benefits of consolidated planning and economics of scale? (100). Also by creating peace trade increases with the country which increases the United States? economy. Kennith Thompson said ?We moved to formulate a coherent, consistent foreign policy in which the entire range of assistance programs,…, are used effectively to further U.S. political, economic, and humanitarian interests, and used to enhance our security and the security of our friends around the world,?(64). Foreign aid not only protects and rebuilds foreign nations, but protects United States citizens, industries, and greatly benefits the United States economy.
The only way to predict the future is to study the past, and by looking at the United States? past it is easy to see there has been a lot of switching back and forth between intervention and isolation. As a country the United States has been at its best during the times of intervention. A particularly strong time was during the Reagan administration. Charles Krauthammer noted ?President Reagan?s 1985 State of the Union Address has become known as the Reagan Doctrine? (63). The Reagan Doctrine set a standard and made a strong statement about the United States. Charles Krauthammer added ?The president pledged American support to those who are risking their lives on every continent from Afghanistan to Nicaragua to defy Soviet supported aggression and secure rights which have been ours from birth? (63). After this America couldn?t back down from any communist movements. ?This policy makes strategic sense, since it is a relatively risk free way for the U.S. to challenge the newest, most vulnerable soviet acquisitions? (63) stated Charles Krauthammer. There were a few problems with creating a democracy in foreign areas like Iran and Nicaragua, but for the most part this was a sound strategy. Charles Krauthammer added, ?The reason there were problems with this strategy in Iran and Nicaragua was for a transition to democracy the material condition must be there; it must work with what exists on the ground? (65). With the Reagan Doctrine in place the United States helped many countries avoid communism, but it neglected the countries that needed aid for other reasons. Reagan recognized this and a new document was created to help nations for whatever reason they might have. At this point ?the Reagan Doctrine has a companion, the Third Force Strategy. Together they amount to be a broad and consistent American commitment to freedom in both communist and noncommunist worlds? (141). With this we could now aid any foreign country that was in trouble which gave us an extra edge. Charles Krauthammer says, ? This doctrine too makes strategic sense because democracies are the most reliable allies of the west and likely to remain so? (65). He noted ? Chile is an example of a successful third Force strategy? (65). Chile was becoming communist, but they also had many other problems with the citizens of the nation. They didn?t understand what was going on and were being taken advantage of. John Spanier related ?In the case of Chile, Secretary of State Henry Kissinger was reported to have said ?I don?t see why we need to stand by and watch a country go communist due to the irresponsibility of its own people,?? (32). We intervened and helped Chile form a strong government and fix their economy. The success that first showed that intervention worked was in El Salvador. ?During the first three years of the Reagan administration, El Salvador was the key Central American Issue in Washington? (12). They saw this as a test to see if they could fix a nation in turmoil and create a democracy. They saw the problems and devised a way to help them. First they had to clearly prove there was a need for the United States to intervene. ?There was an atmosphere of violent uncertainty: of the Prime Minister of the country put under house arrest then freed by demonstrators who were attacked,? and ?Leading figures and cabinet members were being executed? (143). With this going on they felt immediate action was absolutely necessary. ?The United States needed to give military aid as a ?shield? against gorilla attack? (12). This way while they were holding off the fighting they could concentrate on helping to set up a new government and get it back on track. They could force the opposition back, and ? at the same time, the United states would quietly encourage economic and political reforms that would improve the stability and legitimacy of the government? (12). This was a complete success and led to the Reagan Doctrine because now they knew they had the power to step in and rebuild. ? In 1984, El Salvador held its first free election in 50 years? (13). With the two doctrines of intervention in place America began to once again strive. James Cooney stated ?The rebuilding of the U.S. military power and the recovery of the American economy took place during the Reagan years? (108). It is obvious that with intervention being Reagan?s chief issue this was directly responsible for the turn around of America. Cooney related that ?He [Reagan] said his policy was successful because the people became proud of their country and there was a consensus that the United States should play an active role in the world? (108). So looking back at the past we see one of the great times in our history came at a peak of global intervention, and this is a trend that followed every period of intervention.
Throughout all of our American history great leaders have become recognized for their efforts in promoting intervention. It has always been the best policy to advance and improve our nation and by having intervention as our policy for foreign affairs we gained many allies. ?From the first stirrings of nationhood in the middle of the eighteenth century, Americans fixed their gaze outward? (24) stated John Spanier. Many Presidents that are well respected today were strong supporters of intervention. Wodrow Wilson spent his time after World War I going across the country and trying to get the United States to join the League of Nations so we could have an even stronger influence on the world. James Cooney stated ?Wilson believed the country should also be more active in international relations, and he insisted that the Monroe Doctrine be officially recognized in the League of Nations Treaty? (52). After each period of intervention people got tired of taking care of the world and receded into an isolation movement. This always resulted in a slump and ended when we returned to intervention. Spencer tells, ?After the traumatic experience of the experiment in self containment during the early New Deal years, U.S. policy makers vowed never to return to isolationism? (33). This is a great example of where we try to concentrate on our selves but our economy and power suffers until we revert back to intervention. Glenn Hastedt stated:
?Washington?s Farewell address urged Americans to ?steer clear of permanent alliances with any portion of the foreign world? and asserted that ?Europe has a set of primary interests which to us have none or very remote interests. The global depression of the 1930?s, Hitler?s rise to power, the outbreak of WWII, and the constant outward thrust of post WWII communism are proof that Washington?s advice is no longer relevant.? 52
At the beginning of our nation we needed to concentrate on holding ourselves together with a strong central government, but now we must focus outward. We create a safer environment for the entire world by having intervention as our foreign policy. President Truman was also a strong supporter of intervention to increase our strength and to protect the less fortunate. Spanier noted, ?Truman said it ?must? be U.S. policy to support all nations seeking to resist ?attempted subjugation by all armed minorities or by outside pressures? (27). It was very important to stop the soviets and prevent communism and still is today. We needed to rescue any nation being invaded by a communistic country to prevent it from spreading. ?Blocking soviet expansionist thrusts was crucial, but U.S. leaders also undertook to restructure the capitalist system on stronger foundations? (33) added Spanier. It is clear that are greatest moments in history were under leader who believed in intervention, and when we attempted isolation we all suffered.
Looking at the policies presently in effect the future course of action can be determined by their success. Many of the policies used today are working a do provide a safer environment for the entire world. First there are a number of programs the United States has installed to benefit less fortunate nations. John Lovell states, ?These programs enable eligible countries to purchase U.S. equipment, spare parts, and training? (64). This helps rebuild the other nations and increases our economy at the same time. By increasing these programs both the other nations and us benefit. Kennith Thompson adds, ? Because the Administration and Congress, working together, have been able to increase the levels of security assistance during the past few years, we now have ongoing effective programs that are beginning to show clear signs of success? (99). These programs are proven to be working everywhere they have been implemented. John Lovell confirmed, ?The programs we have implemented are effective? (64-65). It would be ridiculously stupid for us not to continue to not only use but increase these programs. William Schneider Jr. states, ?Foreign assistance?assists us in the effective implementation of our foreign policy objectives, promotes global economic and political freedom, and reflects the humanitarian concerns of the American people? (98). We make ourselves stronger and gain support by helping others. We are making a huge difference in the lives of so many people and improving our own self-image by having an interventionist mind set. Cooney says, ?The emphasis in American foreign policy is on ?trouble avoidance,?? (104). Contrary to popular belief the majority of what we do is not to go bomb some radical group trying to invade a vulnerable nation. We concentrate on making those nations stronger and more solid, and working peace treaty out with hostile nations. This way we don?t have to worry about wars and will indirectly cut back on defense spending. Peter Shraeder adds, ?It [intervention] furnishes tangible evidence of our support for the independence and territorial integrity of our friends and allies thus deterring possible aggression and promoting stability? (100). Everything we have been doing in the problem areas of the world has been working to slow down and stop fighting. John Spanier states, ?there is a definite and sustained progress in Central America and throughout the hemisphere? (98). Kennith Thompson adds, ?There have also been modest positive developments in our quest for peace in the Middle East? (98). If the current policies are successful there is no reason to change, and actually there is cause to increase the involvement.
With looking at the past?s problems and successes and observing our current success the only logical procedure would be to continue a strong foreign policy of intervention. Glenn Hastedt has observed that, ?Each movement toward isolation is less complete than the one before it, and each movement toward intervention is deeper than the one before it? (26). This shows that although Americans do eventually get tired of a foreign policy of intervention and fall into isolation they are recognizing it doesn?t work quicker and are happy with intervention longer. Our current Secretary of State Madeline Albright recently gave a speech on foreign affairs. ?First she warned against a retreat to protectionism? (3). She also said, ?Developing countries must be helped to build the institutional capacity they need to manage transparent capital flow and to assist their populations with coping with change. I see here a particular role for the state department? (3-4). It is our responsibility as the only nation capable of helping to do whatever we can to support nations in need. Henry Kissinger stated, ?In the post cold war, The U.S. is the only super power with the capacity to intervene in every part of the world? (1). With this power we would be very selfish not to use it. Kissinger added, ?The attitude of the U.S. is crucial, for it alone has the capacity to function in much the same way that Great Britain once did in maintaining the European balance of power? (8). Not only is it our duty it is the American way. Americans are brought up with a lot of pride that we are the most superior nation in the world, and because of us many nations are able to survive. ?America would not be true to itself if it did not insist on the universal applicability of the idea of liberty? (3) finished Kissinger. All our lives we have been told freedom is an unalienable right and should be had from birth, so as the dominant nation of the world it is our responsibility to do everything in our power to make that dream that we have achieved a reality for the entire world. Glenn Hastedt states, ?Today the need to create a stable world order lies at the heart of the challenges facing U.S. foreign policy? (22). Intervention is also a key to protecting ourselves because it creates allies and stops fighting. Hastedt says, ?Protecting and promoting American interests requires an activist foreign policy? (84). Intervention can stop potential crisis before they get a chance to grow. By getting to the root of the problem and extinguishing it you can prevent the Iraqs and the Kosovos. ?Peter Shraeder states, ?It helps us alleviate the economic and social distress that breeds domestic violence and invites external subversion- particularly important for countries whose necessary military expenditures would otherwise impose severe strains on their economies? (100). He also said, ?It enables our friends and allies to obtain military equipment and training to defend their independence and territorial integrity, permitting them to undertake responsibilities which we would have had to assume? (109). The most important reason isolation could never work is because anything that happens in the rest of the world directly affects us. Glenn Hastedt states, ?Events abroad inevitably impinge the denial of their relevance is self defeating? (83). The only policy for our future for us to remain a prominent nation is one of intervention.
Intervention is the only logical foreign policy for us to have. It increases our defense, and it protects our people and industries in other countries. In the past during times of intervention our country has prospered and during times of isolation we have struggled. Our policies and programs are a great success everywhere they are used, and everything points to a future of continued use. It is our responsibility as the only superpower to provide liberty to the nations in need. Also everything elsewhere effects America, so without intervention as our foreign policy we are just hurting ourselves. It is easy to see that intervention is the only possible choice as a foreign policy.
Albright, Madeline. 21-01-99 Transcript: Albright remarks to Center for National Policy. 21 January 1999. 3 January