President Woodrow Wilson 's Speech Essay

President Woodrow Wilson 's Speech Essay

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“Let us be big enough to know the facts and to welcome the facts, because the facts are based upon the principle that America has always fought for, namely, the equality of self-governing peoples, whether they were big or little-not counting men, but counting rights, not counting representation, but counting the purpose of that representation”. President Woodrow Wilson said these words in his League of Nations speech in Pueblo, Colorado on September 25, 1919. Wilson from this speech created a new framework and expectation for the United States in the realm of United States foreign policy. Wilson laid out the ideals of self- determination, liberal capitalism, and freedom of oppression as guiding pillars for how the United States should conduct itself in world orders (). In 1983, Ronald Reagan evoked similar sounding boards of Wilson’s message in his Evil Empire Speech when he proclaimed, “The basis of those ideals and principles is a commitment to freedom and personal liberty that, itself, is grounded in the much deeper realization that freedom prospers only where the blessings of God are avidly sought and humbly accepted.” As a president, Ronald Reagan placed a divide of good and evil in his public condemnation of the Soviet Union and ultimately his foreign policy was couched in the objective of dismantling the Soviet Union and the pervading threat of communism. However, in the conduction of the Reagan- Chun summit of 1981, it is apparent that there is a deviation away from a moral armature for Reagan, which is provided in the corresponding documents. Rather than applying Wilsonianism in an undiluted structure, Reagan’s objectives reflected a rather biased pragmatic Wilsonianism that drew its energy from the necessitated geo-st...


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... in his public rhetoric and condemnation of the Soviet Union and communism’s pressure, there was a deviation that was apparent in his actual application. In the Reagan-Chun Summit of 1981, Ronald Reagan saw South Korea as being a geo-strategic asset and thusly ignored the ideals of Wilsonianism based human rights in order to reach its means of obtaining hegemony in a region where the Soviet Union was dominant. What must be recognized though is that while exceptionalism has defined America’s foreign policy and sustained it throughout the years, the question arises as to whether or not America’s self- perception ultimately defines itself or poses as a barrier? As the Ronald Reagan- Chun Summit demonstrates, America’s perception of itself causes its leaders to forego and sacrifice the nation’s ideals in the prospect of hegemonic objectives of dominance and superiority.

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