The main theme of the reading is to outline the chronology of the events that have impacted on the United States Foreign policy from time in memorial. Foreign policy was a master plan for the realization of a strong United States. However their foreign policies have been faced with a series of challenges both internal and external.
Their definition of foreign policy was tied to specific terms which include territorial expansion, wealth and worldwide influence, but the model on how to achieve this has been out rightly been omitted.
The omission of a specific model on how the United states would have achieved this great dream has not been mentioned, only a chronology of events have been provided in the reading, the entire content is on action and reaction rather than their formulation.
The reading significantly lacks the persuasion additive due to its narration concentration, for instance, the founding of the foreign policy just rises from a very broad explanation rather than from a step by step analysis and the build up of the events that caused it. The entire reading has been divided into two broad sections which include the gradual expansion of the country’s territory, wealth and influence. On the other hand, the second review emphasis on the modern United States foreign policy as it assumes it position as a super power in the twentieth century. The connectivity between the two concepts is not properly illustrated in the reading causing a breakdown of the chronological flow.
Regardless of this being a good writing, the impact of the series of events that take place have been largely ignored, for instance the emergence of United States as a strong economy in the agricultural sector. By 1820, the United States had become the fourth richest country in the world as measured by per capita income. It was the leading exporter of agricultural products, especially cotton and tobacco, (Hook, chapter 2 part 1, page 33).This achievement, however, was facilitated by abuse of certain basic human rights and slavery within its borders. Such highlights have been shielded, and public participation in this achievement has not been mentioned. As argued by Chrissey Buckley, “Yet the practice of forcing individuals to work against their will was rampant and continued to today.”
The idea of United States opting for an isolated strategy in terms of war is not well illustrated. What were the benefits of this strategy? Could it be a capitalizing skill to wait and associate with the winning side? In the First World War, United States never supported either side of the warring divides until it perceived German as a threat and launched an attack in 1917. The prospect of German control over all Europe and its implication for US security prompted Congress to declare war on Germany in 1917, (Hook, chapter 2 parts 1, page 41).
The reading focuses on the developments of the United States foreign policy in a slow and friendly way but fails to mention the impact it had on other nations. United States used force to pursue their interests. “ President Mallard Fillmore, in 1853, deployed naval vessels to Tokyo. Faced with this early example of gunboat diplomacy, Japans emperor accepted a “treaty of friendship” in 1854 that provided for United States access to the Japanese market” (Hook, chapter 2 part 1, page 39). Should an elaboration of what have happened to Japan and other countries that were forced to such treaties would have been mentioned, then the reader would be in a position to know the impact it had on other nations as well, Did the foreign policy assist other nations, as well? Was it friendly to all? These questions remain answered in this reading.
The value of the atrocities United States has caused other countries have not been accounted for in the advancement of its foreign policy, for instance the Attack on Iraq and Afghanistan, what advantage did they yield to United states foreign policy ?
The inclusion of the prime gain of United States of America from its foreign policy has not been mentioned, is it for economic gains alone? Regardless of the foreign policy being a formulation of the old days, its transition through a series of over forty administrations has not been captured. The role played by different administrations has not been mentioned as desired. Each administration is depicted as coming with its own policy yet how they tie with the previous ones is not spelt out. However, if a guiding explanation would have been provided, it would be easier to arrive at more informing conclusion that it is not an administration policy, but a continuous policy that is not attached to any government.
The future of United States of America foreign policy remains unknown due to political divides and rise of new competitors such as china in the economic front. China appears to be challenging not just today’s economic orthodoxy and order, but the world’s political and military framework, as well. China isn’t content just to sell more TV sets to the world, like Japan and Korea but also to broaden its market share. The Chinese want to have more control over the world, and they want to use their economic clout to get it, (Times business & money. (Why do we fear a rising China? New York: Taboola press, 2011),page 2) Furthermore, the caution being taken by other nations to avoid the domination by united state of America is not mentioned, and this would guide the readers in accessing whether the Modern foreign policy is seen as a form of neo-colonialism or a continuation of spreading their influence.
The reading has not illustrated the role played by the general public in the foreign policies and thus leaves the reader in a naked conclusion of the general public participation. Most the times the public oppose some the foreign action carried out by the nation, (Topical Research Digest. Human Rights and Contemporary Slavery. (New York: publisher, Topical research press, 2010), page 138).
In the end, the conclusion should at least have informed the reader the priority areas of the Americas foreign policy in twenty first centuries. This would be an informing guide to the path United States is focusing to strength its current and future position on earth, (Bruce Jentleson. America Foreign Policy: The Dynamics of Choice in the 21st century. (Washington, DC: Publisher, W.W Norton & company Publishers, 2010), page 166). The future of America according to Bruce stokes seems to be anchored on internal affairs of providing employment, better healthcare and promoting race integration. (Bruce Stokes. Americas’ Foreign policy Priorities in 2014. (New York: Publisher, Pew Research Center Press. 2013), page 224).
United States of America is portrayed as a country whose progress is founded on external influence both economically and politically. The extent to which the country has interfered with the affairs of the other counties will in the long run become a hurdle in its foreign influence. United States has caused wars to other nations thus scathing its international relation with them.
In conclusion United States of America should embrace a foreign policy of cleansing its dark past with other nations, such as those it has declared war upon. Another key aspect portrayed in the theme shows that America foreign policy has been a success story, it dominated during the world war and it enjoys a flourished economy. Furthermore it has won war on capitalism and thus its influence is in reality a success. The future of United States of America foreign policy looks bright borrowing from its success in the past centuries.
- Bruce, Stokes. Americas’ Foreign policy Priorities in 2014. New York. Pew Research Center Press. 2013.
- Bruce, Jentleson. America Foreign Policy: The Dynamics of Choice in the 21st century. Washington, DC.W.W Norton & company Publishers. 2010.
- Steve, Hook. U.S Foreign Policy: The paradox of world power. Washington, DC. CQ press, 2011.
- Topical Research Digest. Human Rights and Contemporary Slavery. New York. Topical research press, 2010.
- Times business & money. Why do we fear a rising China? New York. Taboola press, 2011. Assessed February 17, 2014. http://Why do we fear a rising China? | TIME.com http://business.time.com/2011/06/07/why-do-we-fear-a-rising-china/#ixzz2tJ6NG8HE