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What are the foreign policy goals of the United States? Write an essay in which you describe the three major goals of the U.S foreign policy. What are some of the ways the U.S. pursues these goals? Do you believe the U.S is successful in meeting its foreign policy goals? Why or why not?  Use the handouts on foreign policy and defense policy in formulating your answers. 

The foreign policy goal for the United States is the national security. This ensures that Americans in their homeland and abroad are safe by ensuring that the government dislodges any external aggression. Secondly, it establishes the free and open trade, and this goes a long way in promoting capitalism and the world peace. It supports democracy and provides aid to people in need. The US pursues these goals through military inversion, signing of peace treaties, supporting democracies. America is successful in meeting its foreign policy goals, and this can be seen in many ways. This can be seen through an increased democracy in the world and enhanced free trade.

What was the Reagan Doctrine? Name at least two specific examples of its implementation.

Reagan Doctrine was a deliberate strategy coined and pursued by American government under the Reagan Administration in order to curtail the influence of the Soviet Union. However, Reagan doctrine lasted for less than a decade; it formed the foundation of foreign policy from the early 1980s up to 1991. In the implementation of this doctrine, US provided assistance to anti-communist guerrillas, so as to weaken the Soviet Influence in Africa, Asia and Latin America.

During the start years of the cold war, the United States official policy towards communism was the containment. The creation of Reagan Doctrine shifted the attention of the USA from keeping communism from spreading to eliminating the existing communist governments. In the implementation of Reagan doctrine, USA applied a number of strategies. For instance, it supported the Afghanistan government by providing the military training and weapons, so as to defeat the Soviet Union troops. Secondly, the USA helped in overthrowing communism governments in Africa and substituted then with democratic governments and propagated the idea of capitalism.

Discuss the Carter Doctrine.  Why did his statements have an impact on the Gulf States?

(Study guide: p. 271; Carter Doctrine handout)

The Carter doctrine was a policy proclaimed by the former president of the USA, Jimmy Carter in his state of union address in 1980.The policy stipulated that the USA would apply its military force, if need, to adequately defend its interest in the Persian Gulf region. The doctrine was created as a reaction to 1979 inversion of Afghanistan by the Soviet Union, and it was meant to scare the Soviet Union.

Jimmy Carter proclaimed that the region under the contention which was threatened by the Soviet Union troops was of magnificent importance to United States. In his justification, he explained that the region was endowed with more then two-third of the world exportable oil. In addition, he claimed that the existence of the Soviet Union troops just 300 miles in Indian Ocean was a great threat to free flow of oil from the Middle East. He, therefore, called for a careful thought, a joint participation to respond and dislodge the Soviet Union from getting the control over the place, so as to enhance the global peace. To succeed, he called for implementation of all strategies, including diplomatic mission with no hesitance to apply the military force.

What was isolationism? Who was the first proponent of isolationism and why?  Will isolationism be a feasible foreign policy alternative for the U.S. today? Why or why not?

(Study guide: p. 271; slides 9-10)

Compare and contrast the Bush Doctrine and the Obama Doctrine. Provide a summary of each and explain which, in your, should be more successful and why?

Bush Doctrine

This was the US foreign policy coined under President Bush that stipulated that the U.S had the right to secure itself against the external aggression from countries that host or give assistance to terrorist groups. To implement this goal, America used all available means, including military forces.

Obama Doctrine

This is a style of the foreign policy which tends to apply unifying principle with negotiation and collaboration as the main tenets of the approach to solve problems. It gives diplomatic mission a greater chance in trying to solve issues.

In my opinion, the Obama Doctrine is a success, as compared to the Bush Doctrine. This is because it has promoted dialogue, other than military forces which promotes global peace.

The Isolationism policy became the United States’ foreign policy towards Europe. In this policy, there was a strong view that America minimizes interaction with other nations. President James Monroe had been warned by Retiring President George Washington to avoid entangling alliances with other nations. This meant that America stayed out of the European affairs. This policy showed the arrogance of America of avoiding the colonial masters, but instead, channeled their energy towards developing their nation and propagating their national interests.

The first proponent of isolationism was President George Washington. This was to ensure that America does not engage in entangling alliances with other nations. Isolationism will not be feasible foreign policy today. This is because with globalization, countries need each other, and it will be difficult for America to stay alone.

The United States had an official policy of isolationism in the nineteenth century.  Did the US remain within its borders or did it intervene in the affairs of other nations?  If so, the nations of which region did the United States intervene?

The isolationist United States foreign policy did not restrict them to their country. The US continued with its international intervention but to specific regions. However, this policy only put a restriction to interference in the western hemisphere, and therefore, it silently meant that America had right to meddle in the affairs of countries of the eastern hemisphere.

Towards this, there was lots of military intervention in Mexico, Central America and many other places. In addition, the Spanish American war offered Americans a rare opportunity to gain territory of Guam Philippines.

What is the Cold War?  When did it begin and how did it end?  Under which Presidency did the Cold War end?  (Study guide: p. 272-273; slides 11-14; Reagan Doctrine handout)

Cold War was a period when East-West had tension and conflict without a full-scale war. The situation was characterized by the mutual perceptions of hostility between the military and political alliances. There was a competition to control the third world countries. However, after the death of Stalin, East-West relations relaxed and cold war ended in 1991 under the presidency of George Bush.

What was containment? Name and define two specific actions taken by the U.S. to implement the policy of containment. How did Nixon modify the policy of containment?

(Slides: 11, 13; handouts: Truman Doctrine; Marshall Plan; Nixon Doctrine)

The containment policy was a deliberate American foreign policy coined to stop the spread and influence of the Soviet Union .The Containment Policy would adopt two approaches. The first approach was the military force; the other was economic strategy. In 1947, the U.S. Secretary of State George C. Marshall came up with a program to offer economic aid to Europe. Nixon modified the containment policy by limiting military mission abroad and focusing more on resource mobilization for the self defense.

Provide a detailed description of the Marshall Plan.  What is it?  Under whose Presidency was it implemented?  Was it a success?  Why or why not?  (Study guide: p. 271; slide 11; handout: Marshall Plan)

Marshal Plan was a large scale American aid program to Europe in order to assist in rebuilding economies of the European countries after the World War II, in order to stop the spread of the Soviet Union. This plan was being operated from 1948 and rhas been running for four years. The Marshal plan was a creation of the State Department officials. America offered the same aid to the Soviet Union, but they refused to take it, since taking it would meant that US has a control of the Soviet Union economy. Marshal plan saw US $ 13 billion in technical and economic assistance extended to Europe. Marshall Plan was implemented under the President Harry Truman. The Marshall plan was a success, since it went along way in reconstructing the European economy, which in turn helped to crush the Soviet Union.

Define the following words/ phrases: white primary; poll tax; literacy test. What is the significance of these terms as it relates to civil rights in the United States?

White primary: An electoral system used in the South to prevent participation of African Americans in the Democratic primary, this was one of the most devious tools of disenfranchisement used to prevent African Americans from registering their preferences for the Democratic Party in the South. Poll tax: a tax levied on the right to vote, it was used to limit the electoral participation of minorities and poor. Literacy test: A legal requirement that citizens demonstrate an ability to read and write before they could register to vote, there is no provision in the constitution that requires prospective voters to be literate; his was a tool of disenfranchisement.

One of the most famous judicial decisions of the twentieth century has been Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka. Write an essay in which you discuss the case. Consider the following questions:

a) What was the legal/ constitutional background of the controversy?

b) What issues were settled by the Court’s ruling in the Brown case?

c) What impact did the case have on life in America?

The U.S. Supreme Court adopted the policy known as separate-but-equal to determine that state laws that segregated on the basis of race were permissible under the Fourteenth Amendment Equal Protection Clause. The effect of this ruling was to institutionalize the state segregation laws. The terms are significant in relation to the civil rights in the US, because; it shows the changes in the constitutional rights of Americans over the years. The terms sum up some of the crucial historical events that have helped shape the current US Constitution.

The case of Brown v. Board of Education Topeka was a case involving an eight year old Linda Brown and the Board of Education Topeka. Brown had been denied admission to a nearby school because of race, and instead, she was referred to another school 21 blocks away. The constitutional controversy arose from the clause in the 14th Amendment, stating equal protection. The court, therefore, had to determine whether or not the segregation of schools was constitutional.

The court’s ruling was that; segregation at schools led to the denial of equal protection by the laws, hence separating children on the basis of race would lead to the development of inferiority feelings that would affect the heart and the mind – might be difficult to undo.

The case influenced the life in America by leading to the elimination of ‘separate but equal’. Therefore, it was the starting point towards the end of racism in the US. Public facilities would start to be used by blacks and whites without discrimination.

The Affirmative action is a program designed to ensure the equal opportunities in employment and college admissions for racial minorities and women. Affirmative action is an effort that is being with the objective of developing a systematic approach that would facilitate for the attainment of equal opportunities for education, business development and employment based on qualification rather than other traits.

The purpose of the affirmative action is to provide the country with a measure that it can use to deal with systemic segregation of individuals’ capabilities based on race, gender, religion etc., in order to enhance the development, achievement, performance and increase the contribution.

The problems that arose as a result of the affirmative action policy include; continued occurrences of discrimination in the society even today e.g. an African Americans may have a degree, but be assigned duties in rail fixing, and thus, depicting the policy as ineffective. At the same time, it has placed pressure on employers and institutions to ensure that people of color are not excluded, which is challenging.

What was the significance of Plessy v. Ferguson? What case overturned the Plessy precedent?

Plessy v. Ferguson is a case that involved Homer Plessy being accused of sitting in a railroad car that had been set aside for whites only. The law required that Plessy would still be regarded as an African American. Significance of Plessy v. Ferguson is the fact that, the case facilitated for the provision of a legal standing to the idea of ‘separate but equal. The doctrine expected that the facilities that were provided to the public were of the same quality, but each race had their separate sections; not allowed to interact.

12. Define and explain the purpose of Jim Crow laws? How long were they in existence? Do Jim Crow laws still exist in the US today? Jim Crow laws are legal provisions requiring the social segregation of African Americans in separate and generally unequal. The laws were defined what have been called ‘separate but equal’. This meant that the people of color and whites were all allowed to vote, but the difference was such that they were not allowed to vote in the same location. They were expected to vote in the separate locations. The ‘separate but equal’ included other rights and liberties e.g. in education, people of color and whites were all allowed to access education, but in different schools. In buses, they would use the same bus but take different seats etc. The purpose of the laws was to exhibit the existence of equality in the US, but equality was diluted by segregation outlined in the Jim Crow laws. Presently, the laws do not exist because the equality has been achieved and segregation has been eliminated. People of color and blacks are allowed to mingle and are given equal rights.

List and define the rights of the Supreme Court considers fundamental rights. Under what circumstances may the government restrict fundamental rights?

Right to vote – each person has got right to participate in national elections.

Right to Privacy – Everybody’s private life must be respected.

Freedom of speech – Nobody should be restricted to give speech or information.

Freedom of movement – Everyone has the got right to go to a place of his or her choice within the law.

Freedom of religion-Each individual religion is respected.

Freedom of assembly – Everyone can meet freely with others.

These fundamental rights and freedoms may be restricted by the government, if they infringe on national security.

What is the significance of the following court cases: Gideon v. Arizona? Describe what happened in each case that resulted in the Supreme Court considering it? What was the Court’s decision in each case?

Plessy v. Ferguson is a case that involved Homer Plessy being accused of sitting in a railroad car that had been set aside for whites only. Although Plessy was black, the law required that Plessy would still be regarded as an African American. Significance of Plessy v. Ferguson is the fact that, the case facilitate for the provision of a legal standing to the idea of ‘separate but equal’. The doctrine expected that the facilities that were provided to the public were of the same quality, but each race had their separate sections; not allowed to interact.

Other than the first 10 amendments, which amendment to the U.S. Constitution has played the greatest role in the development of civil liberties policy in America? Explain why?

Bill of rights is the 10 most important amendments in the constitution of the U.S which was set 1791 the right that protect the land-owning, black African Americans and women, basically to protect all the Americans. On the other hand, every state can regulate the bill right differently than other states, but still under the Supreme Court of the U.S.

Gideon v. Wainwright in 1963 represented himself in his case and was convicted in Florida court; they violated his right, since he was never represented by a lawyer. His ruling was later over turned. This actually shows the power of human rights in the provision of the constitution.

Miranda V. Arizona: one of the famous rulings by the Supreme Court is the ruling on Miranda case. This ruling had significance that an individual cannot be allowed to incriminate him or herself. This came from the 15th amendment of the constitution. It ensures right for fair trial in a court of law.

It should be noted that the world has made a great strides, when it came to human rights; however, much is still to be done in some counties, since there are usually many cases of torture and ill treatment of people, combatants and prisoners of war during any conflict. These constitute some of the most heinous crimes under the international humanitarian law. They violate both human rights and human dignity. The Universal Declaration of Human Rights aims to protect everyone against the “torture or cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment”. There are no exceptions to this under the international law, and all countries have the responsibility to comply with this unconditional prohibition of all kinds of torture and ill treatment. Several international organizations have come up with various guidelines that are meant to help in the prevention of torture and ill treatment. They are also actively involved in the monitoring of conflicts all over the world to identify cases in which people have been subjected to the torture or ill treatment. Third world countries are especially notorious for torture and ill treatment of people, and the international community, through various organizations, is pushing these countries to follow the relevant international humanitarian laws regarding the same.

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