Foreign Policy Recommendations for the Obama Administration

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After December 26 1991, when the Soviet Union fell, the bipolarity of the international system was effaced. In the post- Cold War era, the United States faced the problem, without a defined enemy, to adopt a new foreign policy. To begin to analyze the political foreign policy of the United States, one must first understand the international system. According to Political Realism, a theory of international thought, the state is the key unit within the acts within the system. These states act according to their key norms, which are allowed by the system. However, these sates are also affected the domestic and external factors which control how they act. The domestic factors include political culture, their economic system, the leadership within the country, and the population. Despite these large factors, the key external factor that determines the actions and foreign policy of the state is anarchy. Anarchy is the lack of a central government that can enforce rules within the international community. This principle implies that the international community is dangerous and could spell ruin and disparity for any state without rules to govern and mandates that restrict unruly states, creating a self-help system. In order to survive within this system a state must generate power or the ability to make others do what they otherwise would not do. Within this power a state could easily fall to other powers. To gain power, states either create alliances or increase their political advantages. The main components of power are soft and material power. Soft power includes the ability to “ make other states want what you want”(Nye). Material power includes wealth to issue rewards and punishments and a large military to instill fear into other ... ... middle of paper ... ...w longer have such sovereignty anyway. However, we should just step down from our duties, but continue to lead and advocate our ideals while assuming a lesser role. As shown by taking a few National Interest policies while taking a multilateral views as well which will put limited strain of the U.S. economy while allowing it to take an active lead that while influence other nations by its apparent soft power. Works Cited "International Affairs." Personal interview. Jan.-Feb. 2011. Nye, Joseph. "The New Rome Meets the New Barbarians." The Economist [New York] Mar. 2002, Article 1 sec.: 2-4. Print. Stiles, Kendall W. Case Histories in International Polictics. 5th ed. Georgetown: Pearson Education, 2008. Print. Wallerstein, Immaneul. "The Eagle Has Crashed Landed." Foreign Policy [Minneapolis] July-Aug. 2002, Annual Edition ed., Article 2 sec.: 5-9. Print.

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