• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

From a military perspective examine the changing nature of U.S Foreign policy in the post cold war era.

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

From a military perspective examine the changing nature of U.S Foreign policy in the post cold war era. Since the end of the cold war we have seen a dramatic change in U.S foreign policy towards Europe. We have seen it change from one of suspicion and aggression towards the Soviet Union to one that is ready to work together militarily with most members of Europe. Many different events have seen the U.S work together with Europe mostly at peacekeeping but many events have also contradicted this and shown problems in the relationship between the two. President Reagan foresaw the coming changes that took place and proclaimed in a speech to the house of commons in 1982 that 'while we must be cautious about forcing the pace of change, we must not hesitate to declare our ultimate objectives and take concrete actions to move towards them' (Reagan, 1982, www.mtholyoke.edu). This essay is designed to help the reader understand significant events that influenced U.S foreign policy towards Europe, how these events changed or help to explain current foreign policy and what the nature of U.S foreign policy was and what it is today. First to understand how U.S foreign policy has changed we must first take a brief look at what it used to be during the cold war era. America was very suspicious of the Soviet Union and their foreign policy took a realist perspective which 'was couched in terms of self interest, indeed, in terms of national survival' (McKay, 2001, page 311). ...read more.

Middle

In one report it was claimed that 'America, France and Britain - the driving force behind the military effort - have displayed an impressive degree of unity' (Economist, 9th Sept 1995, page 37) which supports the claim that since the cold war era relations between the U.S and Europe have been improved, especially with Russia supporting the efforts in Bosnia which could not have been predicted considering the atrocious state of U.S-Soviet relations under a decade ago during the cold war After Bill Clinton decided to get the U.S militarily involved in the Bosnian conflict he began to be more involved in foreign policy towards Europe, with some crowning him as 'a foreign policy president' (Economist, Oct 14th 1995, page 67). This was partly due to his efforts to be re-elected, especially after the loss of power over America's domestic agenda now that the Republican party controlled Congress. His involvement in Bosnia 'he boasts...are bringing results' (Economist, Oct 14th 1995, page 67) and with progress being made in other European areas of military conflict like the diplomatic talks in Northern Ireland and later military action in Kosovo we can see what a significant difference Clinton made to the nature of U.S foreign policy, how he has moved America into closer understanding with Europe and how he has helped shape U.S foreign policy into what it has become in present day. He helped America make the transitional stage from being a lone actor on international affairs, which they had been for some time, to one that is the leader who works closely with her allies. ...read more.

Conclusion

than ever before. However not every European supported America with some believing that 'the attacks on America were a consequence of the evils of American foreign policy' (Economist, Sept 15th 2001, page 21) which shows that U.S foreign policy must also be careful because it has enemies in Europe as well as the middle east. To conclude we must look at the past decade since the end of the cold war and realise that American foreign policy has moved on a great deal. The 'New World Order' in 1991 'recognised that the U.S could not do everything' (Dumbrell, 1997, page 163) and signalled the start of an American Foreign Policy that relied more on multilateral action rather than unilateral. This change has meant that the U.S has had to find closer friends and has therefore brought Europe in as a closer ally than ever before. The different conflicts that America has joined on European soil, fighting with European soldiers in Bosnia and Kosovo has brought the two together through co-operation on military matters. Also 'the September 11th attacks will not be an American return to isolationism, but a reinvigoration of engagement' (Gordon, 2001, www.brook.edu) with relations with Russia never being so good in the post-cold war era. This constantly changing world environment means that the future of U.S foreign policy will never be certain but the days of isolationism and suspicion of Europe are for the moment behind us and with the new war on terrorism in which America will lead 'U.S foreign policy will probably never be the same again' (Gordon, 2001, www.brook.edu). ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level International History, 1945-1991 section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level International History, 1945-1991 essays

  1. Superpower Relations 1945-90

    both China and the USSR * The US got the UN to condemn the invasion, and authorise the creation of a UN army to help South Korea. * The USSR could have blocked this UN decision. However, they were boycotting the UN in protest at the UN's refusal to recognise the new Chinese government.

  2. Assess the strategic strengths and weaknesses of America's 'containment of communism' policy since 1945.

    The Americans have contained communism, and it has worked. As mentioned above the communist ideology was sufficient in fighting the ideological battle. However, economically and militarily, there was no way that the Communists/Soviets could ever win these battles when you consider the organised and vast economic infrastructure that the US was/is compared to the relatively recent industrialisation of the USSR.

  1. The Cold War was a big rivalry that developed after World War II.

    The avoidance of war indicated that both the USA and USSR recognized the responsibility of nuclear weapons and both were reluctant to use them. In 1964, War in Vietnam erupted. It was very similar to the Korean War where North Vietnam was backed by the USSR and the South was strongly supported by the USA.

  2. What part did Ronald Reagan play in bringing the Cold War to an end?

    position of strength.'6 Reagan came to power with a mandate to do this, and between 1981 and 1986 military spending doubled, which was the biggest increase since the 1960s and the 'missile gap' scare.7 Consequently new missile and stealth bomber programmes were commenced or re-commenced, and the Strategic Defence Initiative (S.D.I.)

  1. This graduation paper is about U.S. - Soviet relations in Cold War period. Our ...

    Stalin "saw enemies everywhere," his daughter later recalled, and with a vengeance frightening in its irrationality, sought to destroy them. It was an "orgy of terror," one historian said.

  2. How far did dtente introduce a new era of co-operation in US-Soviet relations during ...

    Further agreements included an interim treaty limiting ICBMs and SLBMs, an acceptance of the mutually-assured destruction (MAD) thinking, broad nuclear parity and a joint space programme. SALT II set limits on all nuclear weapons and systems (2250 of all categories of delivery vehicles).

  1. How significant was the presence of foreign powers as an influence on the nature ...

    ??complex of tensions and despotisms that constitute the contemporary Middle East??[9] The creation of the new modern states was carried with no cultural, historical or political knowledge over where the ideal place to establish borders would be, and therefore, without regard to natural or human boundaries, they were made according to distinct territorial entities.

  2. The aim of this essay is to evaluate if the end of the Cold ...

    The two proponents of this struggle which eventually engulfed the rest of the globe were the US and the Soviet Union. The end of World War II brought an end to the European supremacy in world politics as they were eclipsed by the new powers of the Soviet Union and the US.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work