, Research Paper
A WORLD OF PEACE
Imagine yourself as a citizen. of another country. Whether it may be China, Russia, or England. Your view of actions that America takes will be far different from those who live in America. Basically, America stands for many things all around the world. Good, bad or in between, our actions as a country, I believe, are rarely understood or justified. Do we really need to concern ourselves with their opinions? Usually America’s best interests are not the same interests of other countries. However, for the most part our political leaders do act in the best interests of the U.S. Despite countries with negative opinions of the U.S., America is highly respected because of actions taken in the past or present to assist other nations in times of need. Things such as the Marshall Plan were great aids for other countries.. After WW II, help start Europeans or starting the Peace Corp aided third world countries. Actions such as these cannot go without notice and appreciation by other nations.
America as a moral leader and authority
“For we must consider that we shall be as a city upon a hill. The eyes of the people are upon us,”-John Winthrop 1630.
The ideas behind this realm of foreign policy are to “provide international leadership based on the shared norms of humanity and standards of international behavior and set a principle example for others to follow. A clear illustration of this objective is seen in America’s action in operation restored hope in Somalia. In 1992 the Somalian people were suffering horribly under the rule of several warlords that were constantly clashing and cared little for humanitalism. Accompanied by the Ghost of 500,000 dead Somalis, an expanded peace effort began. In December 1992, a UN peace keeping force led by 2,000 U.S. Marines were sent to restore order, while other international agencies attempted the difficult task of food distribution and other humanitarian aid. This intervention was historical. It was the first time the United Nations ever intervened without the permission in the affairs of an independent nation. Over the next two years 50,000 people were killed in factional fighting, and an estimated 300,000 died of starvation because it was impossible to transport through their war ravaged country. The violence continued in the country and peace keeping forces became involuntarily involved. A number of UN soldiers were killed and under international pressure, critical of its operations, the UN force was withdrawn in 1994. In mid 1994 the first of the U.S. troops left Somalia having failed in their task of peace. Warring Somalia clan leaders had been unable to find any common ground for agreement, and international relief organizations were forced to suspend operations because of wide spread looting. As soon as all agencies began leaving, Somalia’s law and order broke down and warlords resumed their fractional fighting. A massive hunt for the warlord general Aidid was launched, and several American causalities were included. Eventually, U.S. President Bill Clinton abandoned the hunt for Aidid and looked for a political solution. However, Somalia, although it had received some food to alleviate famine, in effect remained without a government. Though total peace was not obtained, benefits from the project were many while violence in Somalia interfered with international famine efforts between December 3, 1992 and May 4, 1993. The amount of humanitarian assistance was countless. Citizens now had homes, schools for their children, places to get medical care and food to eat. Unfortunately many of these aspects were overlooked because of the fact that overall peace sadly had not been achieved.
Providing global or regional security
The meaning of this objective is “to establish, preserve and enhance peace and stability through means such as formal institutions, alliance building, mutual cooperation deterrence, the projection of power, and the use of military force.”
In the years after World War II, many Western leaders saw the policies of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR) as threatening to stability and peace. The forcible installation of Communist governments throughout Eastern Europe, territorial demands by the Soviets, and their support of guerrilla war in Greece, and regional separatism in Iran appeared to many as the first steps of World War III. Such events prompted the signing of the Dunkirk Treaty in 1947 between Britain and France, pledging common defense against aggression. Subsequent events, including the rejection by Eastern European nations of the European Recovery Program (Marshall Plan) and the creation of Cominform, a European Communist organization in 1947, led to the Brussels Treaty signed by most Western European countries in 1948. Among the goals of that pact was the collective defense of its members. The Berlin blockade that began in March 1948, led to negotiations between Western Europe, Canada, and the United States that resulted in the North Atlantic Treaty.
The North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), is a regional defense alliance, formed under Article 9 of the North Atlantic Treaty that was signed on April 4, 1949. The original signatories were Belgium, Canada, Denmark, France, Great Britain, Iceland, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, and the United States. Greece and Turkey were admitted to the alliance in 1952, West Germany in 1955, and Spain in 1982. NATO’s purpose is to enhance the stability, well being, and freedom of its members by means of a system of collective security. In 1990, the newly unified Germany replaced West Germany as a NATO member. Over the years the existence of NATO has led to closer ties between its members and to a growing community of interests. The treaty itself has provided a model for other collective security agreements. It is possible that NATO dissuaded the USSR from attempting direct assault on Western Europe. On the other hand, the rearmament of West Germany and its admission to the alliance were the apparent causes of the establishment of the Warsaw Pact in 1955.
In the early 1990s, the political transformation of the USSR and Eastern Europe, including the absorption of East Germany into the Federal Republic of Germany (West Germany), and the dissolution of the Warsaw Pact, which drastically reduced the military threat from the USSR. Nevertheless, many Western observers see NATO in the post-Cold War era as an umbrella of security in a Europe buffeted by the nationalist passions unleashed in Eastern Europe and the former USSR. The North Atlantic Cooperation Council, established in November 1991, provides a forum for consultations between NATO members, East European nations, and the former Soviet republics. In 1993, NATO members endorsed a proposal to offer former Warsaw Pact members limited associations with NATO. Under the plan, known as Partnership for Peace, nonmembers could be invited to participate in information sharing, joint exercises, and peacekeeping operations.
Another example of America providing security is clear in the Persian Gulf War, fought in Kuwait and Iraq during January and February 1991. The crisis began in August 1990, when Iraq, led by President Saddam Hussein, invaded and annexed Kuwait. Between August and November, the United Nations Security Council passed a series of resolutions that culminated in the demand that Iraq withdraw unconditionally from Kuwait by January 15, 1991. By that time, some 500,000 allied ground, air, and naval forces, chiefly from the United States, Saudi Arabia, Great Britain, Egypt, Syria, and France, were arrayed against an Iraqi army estimated at that time to number 540,000.
Under the command of U.S. General H. Norman Schwarzkopf, the multinational coalition began intensive aerial bombardment of military targets in Iraq and Kuwait. Within 24 hours after the UN deadline expired, using advanced weaponry such as laser-guided bombs and cruise missiles, as well as conventional weapons ennded. After establishing air superiority, coalition forces disabled Iraq’s command and control centers, especially in Baghdad and Al Basrah of transport and communication between Baghdad and the troops in the field; and relentlessly attacked Iraq’s infantry, which was dug in along the Saudi-Kuwaiti border, and the 125,000-man Republican Guard in southeastern Iraq and northern Kuwait. Some Iraqi aircraft were shot down; many more were bombed in shelters or fled to Iran. Iraq retaliated by using mobile launchers to fire Scud missiles at Saudi Arabia and Israel, a noncombatant; the U.S. countered this threat with patriot antimissile missiles.
In mid-February, with its military and civilian casualties rapidly mounting, Iraq signaled its willingness to withdraw from Kuwait. A series of conditional Iraqi offers, mediated by the Soviet Union, were rejected by the coalition. Instead, allied forces began a coordinated air-land offensive, breaching Iraq’s main line of defense at the Saudi-Kuwaiti border and swiftly advancing through southern Iraq to outflank the main Iraqi force and cut off the Republican Guard’s principal avenue of retreat. Within 100 hours, the city of Kuwait had been liberated, and ten of thousands of Iraqi troops had deserted, surrendered, or been captured or killed. Coalition combat losses were astonishingly light: as of February 28, when offensive operations were suspended, only 149 allied troops had been killed and 513 wounded. Damage to Kuwait was extensive, however, as retreating
Iraqi forces looted the capital and set fire to most of Kuwait’s oil wells. Iraqi representatives accepted allied terms for a provisional truce on March 3 and a permanent cease-fire on April 6. Iraq agreed to pay reparations to Kuwait, reveal the location and extent of its stockpiles of chemical and biological weapons, and eliminate its weapons of mass destruction. Subsequently, however, UN inspectors complained that the Baghdad government was frustrating their attempts to monitor Iraqi compliance.
These two aspects of global security, the leadership of NATO, and the victory of the Persian Gulf War show very clearly the involvement in foreign activities relating to security. Other examples are the Kosovo conflict when America acted to prevent another holocaust of the Serbian people. Another would be U.S. involvement in the Balkans and Ukraine. There are also several other examples past and present that prove America’s objective of global security.
I believe that the United States should definitely play the part of world protector whenever and wherever possible. In the beginning, I was essentially for the United States being an Isolationist, but as time progressed, I decided that this is the only way that our nation can proceed into the future. The United States is the most powerful nation on earth, both economically and militarily, this is a statement hardly anyone can deny. The fact that we are the most powerful nation only says that we should take initiative, and guide the world towards peace. It is a responsibility that the United States has to other nations in the world. The reason for this is simple. Not only does taking the initiative of world leader show the fact that we have the power, but also other things. By concerning ourselves with other nation’s affairs, we establish allies that will be important in the future. Granted some look at this as sticking our nose in other countries business, but I do not. With the world balancing on the edge of destruction, with the threat of nuclear war, foreign relationships are extremely important to the United States of America. The United States is fully recognized as the most powerful nation on the planet earth, and with that power comes a sense of responsibility. The U.S. needs to pay close attention to this resposiblility if it hopes to keep its place as on the throne as king of nations. Who knows what might happen in the future? Is a world of peace and tranquility so far fetched? I believe that it is, but our nation was founded with strong moral beliefs that should be reflected not only now, but also in years to come; a sense of responsibility as a world leader and a deciding force in the world. In the winter of 96-97, President Bill Clinton gave a speech at the Democratic National Convention in Chicago. He summed it up best with this statement, “We cannot become the world’s policemen. But where our values and our interests are at sake and where we can make a difference we must act and we must lead. That is our job and we are better stronger and safer because we are doing it.”