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Please be aware that this is a student-generated wiki designed for review for my students' AP exams. Come in, look around, and enjoy yourself...just be aware of the nature of this wiki. Even though most everything is correct, I advise caution before citing this as an authoritative source.

Foreign and Military Policy

  • Public opinion towards foreign policy tends to remain at the status quo, only changing due to a earthshaking event (e.g. Pearl Harbor, Terrorist Attacks 9/11)
  • 9/11 was the most lethal destruction of American lives and property since the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941.
  • But 9/11 was different from Pearl Harbor: the attack on Pearl Harbor had, so to speak, a return address: We knew who did it and where they lived.
  • 9/11 had no return address: it was a terrorist attack waged by small groups that could be located anywhere.
    • President Bush's approval rating shot up as a result, which was to be expected. In general, Americans tend to "rally 'round the flag" in a crisis, and as a corollary, when the country faces a major crisis, approval ratings of the president seated at the time experience a significant boost.
  • Although Americans' response of patriotism and unity was extremely valuable, it left many unanswered questions.
    • For example, how can America wage war in remote nations that harbor terrorists?
    • How, if at all, should America deal with nations that are sheltering or supporting terrorists but otherwise have been friendly to the U.S.?
  • Tocqueville said that the conduct of foreign affairs requires precisely those qualities most lacking in a democratic nation.
  • “A democracy can only with great difficulty regulate the details of an important undertaking; preserve in a fixed design, and work out its execution in spite of serious obstacles. It cannot combine its measure with secrecy or await their consequences with patience.”
  • Foreign policy involves America's interaction with other nations; foreign policy aims to keep peace with other nations through relations based on trade, diplomacy, or the military.
  • According to the Foreign Policy Agenda of the U.S. Department of State, the goals of foreign policy are "to create a more secure, democratic, and prosperous world for the benefit of the American people and the international community."
  • The United States House Committee on Foreign Affairs adds that its goals include to "export controls, including nonproliferation of nuclear technology and nuclear hardware; measures to foster commercial intercourse with foreign nations and to safeguard American business abroad; International commodity agreements; international education; and protection of American citizens abroad and expatriation."
  • United Nations: Created in 1945, UN is the organizations whose members agree to renounce war and to respect certain human and economic freedoms. The seat of real power in UN is the Security Council(Wilson).
  • The UN Security Council has 5 permanent members (China, France, United States, United Kingdom, and Russian Federation), who are the most powerful (in the UN and generally in the world), and 10 non-permanent members elected by the general assembly (currently includes Argentina, Azerbaijan, Australia, Guatemala, Luxembourg, Morocco, Pakistan, Republic of Korea, Rwanda, and Togo) (UN.org).
  • European Union: A transitional government composed of most European nations that coordinates monetary, trade, immigration, and labor policies, making its members one economic unit.(Wilson)
  • Central Intelligence Agency: An agency created after WWII to coordinate American intelligence activities abroad.

The Constitution establishes certain powers within the federal government in terms of foreign relations, but they often clash.
  • The President is Commander-in-Chief, but Congress appropriates money for foreign and military operations.
  • There is hardly ever a time where Congress doesn't appropriate funds to foreign military endeavors, lest members of Congress appear unsupportive of our troops.
  • Congress is supposed to formally declare war with a 2/3 vote, allowing the President to attack with the troops; however this only happened 5 times in American History. Congress also have the power to approve or reject treaties with a 2/3 vote.
    • For instance, President Wilson negotiated the Treaty of Versailles, which ended WWI, and President Carter negotiated the Panama Canal Treaty, which returned the Panama Canal to Panama. However, the Senate rejected the Treaty of Versailles and approved the Panama Canal Treaty (Krieger 102).
  • The President appoints ambassadors, but the Senate must confirm them.
  • Despite Americans common belief that the president has power over foreign policy, only Congress is able to regulate commerce with other nations. But the president does have more power in foreign policy matters than domestic policy. Also, Congress is the branch that has the ability to declare war.
  • Other nations also seem to treat the president as the primary figure in regards to foreign policy of the US
  • The Secretary of State is the foreign minister and is who takes care of state-to-state diplomacy even though the president has ultimate authority over foreign policy.
  • While the President signs military officers' commissions, and Congress authorizes this, military personnel swear allegiance to the Constitution and not to any governmental figure or office. Strictly speaking, they are independent of the government. (Personal communication with a former Lieutenant Colonel, USMCR)
Senate Foreign Relations Committee
  • This committee is a standing committee
  • Senate plays a major influence in foreign policy, since it can confirm ambassadors and decide whether or not to allow a treaty proposed by the president.
  • The member of Senate most involved with these foreign policy matters in the chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.
  • Wilson and Dilulio make the point that the president and chairman are able to operate based concomitantly in foreign policy matters if the two share a similar worldview. There are, however, many disputes if the two have different worldviews.
  • One example, in which the worldviews of the president and the chairman coincided, is that of FDR and Chairman Tom Conally. An example in which the views of the president and chairman were in opposition , can be seen with the relationship between Woodrow Wilson and Henry Cabot Lodge.[1]

According to Wilson, there are two main questions involved in foreign and military policy:
  1. Which nations do we support? Ones that go along with the U.S., or only ones that are democracies?
  2. "Are we the world's policeman?" What right do we have to intervene in the affairs of others', and how do we pick where and which affairs we involve ourselves in?
  • Some observers think that democratic politics makes managing foreign and military policy harder
  • Tocqueville said that the conduct of affairs requires precisely those qualities most lacking in a democratic nation
  • Since all out actions, in a democracy, our public, they are subject to the use of our enemies. Rather than being able to make secret decisions in private for the better of the country, Wilson states that America has to play poker "with with its cards turned up".
  • Others disagree; to them the strength of democracy is that its people, when mobilized by the president, will support our overseas engagements even when many deaths occur

Kinds of Foreign Policy
  • There are majoritarian politics: those decisions (and non-decisions) that are perceived to confer widely distributed benefits and impose widely distributed costs (for example, war is an example of majoritarian foreign policy. Everyone pays for the war with taxes, and one could say that everyone benefits since it is to protect us.)
    • Most of power lies in the President when it comes to majoritarian foreign policy.
      • The President decides whether to deploy troops or take action following crises and what course of action to take.
      • The President declares the US to be at war with other nations [although he needs Congressional approval to formally declare war]
    • According to Wilson, examples of this are the decision to go to war, the establishment of military alliances with Western Europe, the negotiation of a nuclear test ban or a strategic arms limitation agreement, the response to the crisis posed by the Soviet blockade of West Berlin or the placement of Soviet offensive missiles in Cuba, the decision to aid the contras in Nicaragua, and the opening up of diplomatic relations with the People's Republic of China.
    • Shapes the great issues of national diplomacy and military policy
    • Public opinion on majoritarian foreign policy issues reflects a disposition to trust the president. (Wilson and Dilulio)
    • To go further in depth with tariffs, say the import tariff on Japanese steel increase, American steel companies will benefit because they can then raise the price of the steel, making a larger profit. On the other hand this hurts some firms as well because they have to buy the steel for a higher price.
    • More power lies within Congress, but President still has the most power.
    • However, more recently, Arab-Americans have been mobilizing and pressing the government to make decisions that protect their interests in the middle-east as well.
    • The power is predominantly within Congress.
  • Foreign Policy can be either majoritarian or client based depending on the issue.
  • may reflect interest group politics
  • Majority opinion is weakly defined.
  • who has the power in foreign policy depends on what kind of foreign policy
  • Congress plays a larger role when client politics or interest groups are involved.
    • It may send economic aid abroad, shapes the tariff system, and the shipment of weapons and creation of new alliances.
  • The President has much more power in foreign policy than in domestic policy
  • Public opinion tends to agree with the President on foreign policy matters
  • Worldview: a comprehensive opinion of how the U.S. should respond to worlds problems.
  • Isolationism: the opinion that the U.S, should withdraw from World affairs. (1920's and 30's)This view was made after the event of World War I where very little was done yet so many American lives were lost.
  • Containment: the belief that the U.S. should resist the expansion of aggressive nations, especially the former Soviet Union. (1950's and 1960's)
    • Mainly targeted the threat of Communism, cast abroad by the Soviets to nations like Cuba.
  • This was the result of WWII, especially after the bombing of Pearl Harbor the public moved from the isolationist view to the containment view following the end of WWII. The realization of the mistake it was to appease Hitler was another cause of this view to shape, as it became important to prevent similar expansion by the Soviets so that they didn't become similarly powerful to Germany before action finally was taken against its expansion.
  • Disengagement: a reaction to the failures in Vietnam; many politicians sought withdrawal from heavy involvement in international affairs. (1960's and 70's)
  • Human Rights: the view that American foreign policy should focus on assuring human rights internationally, especially the prevention of genocide. This goal developed after the Bosnian massacres of the 1990s. It is, however, is pursued rather unevenly and usually only when there's a significant benefit to be reaped by Americans in doing so, as blatantly exemplified by the number of genocides going on that America is not officially trying to stop. (1990's - on).
  • Public majorities support but do not direct policy in which opinion tends to react to events rather than solve them.

The Constitutional and Legal Context
  • The Supreme Court has ruled that the federal government has foreign policy powers beyond those specifically mentioned in the Constitution (Benson, Waples).
  • Power over foreign affairs is shared by both the president and congress
  • The president and Congress struggle over foreign affairs as a result of the Constitution and how it splits power. For one example, the president can control his armed forces as commander in chief, but he must have Congress's support for money. Thus conflict and lags emerge. Examples of this conflict include that:
    • the president can appoint ambassadors to other countries but those appointments have to be approved by the Senate.
    • the president isn't stopped from trying to negotiate treaties but they must be ratified by Congress by a 2/3 vote.
  • However, the public has a set view that the President is solely the "commander in chief" of not only the armed forces but all of foreign affairs.
  • Congress has the powers to set limitations to how much economic aid a president can give to a foreign country.
    • Example: In 1974-1978,congress forces president to halt arm sales to turkey during the dispute between Greece
  • The Supreme Court has been reluctant to touch the conflicts between the president and Congress when it comes to the conduct of foreign affairs. When President Nixon was trying to take the war in Vietnam to another level, members of Congress challenged it and brought it to the Court. The Court ignored it and told the president and Congress to handle their dispute and do their jobs.
  • The president has managed to grasp control of foreign affairs that the Framers did not foresee. As the public sees the president as the man in charge of foreign affairs, they allow him to gain powers that are not granted in the Constitution. Presidents have used this power to send troops overseas without Congressional approval more than 125 times.
    • Congress has only declared war in six out of the thirteen America fought in.
  • Despite these instances where the president has granted himself more power, the president is comparatively weaker than leaders of other democratic nations. But in matters of presidential power and troop deployment, the president is much more powerful than the Framers had predicted or planned for.
  • The Wars Powers Act was meant to be a check on the president's power however it has never been truly used.

Structure of Decision Making
  • The President (as commander in chief) is the head of the chain of command, followed then by the Secretary of Defense.
  • After the Secretary of Defense, power then falls into the hands of the Joint Chiefs of staff.
  • Leadership in foreign policy can be centered in the White House (president and national security advisor) or in the State Department (the secretary of state).
  • Decisions made by the President and Secretary of Defense must balance both traditional roles as well as those intended to protect the nation from terrorism according to Benson and Waples.
    • This is a strong reason why we have had to maintain a state-of-the art military, so our military spending has remained extremely high even in "peace time."
  • National Security Act of 1947.
    • created under Harry S. Truman
    • officially enacted the Joint Chiefs of Staff, which included the chairman, and the Chief of Staff of the Army, Air Force, and Naval Operations
    • Joined the Department of the Army and the Navy into the Department of Defense and established Department of the Air Force.
    • Headed under the Secretary of Defense.
    • Created first peacetime intelligence agency, the CIA.
    • The reasons for separate uniformed services were:
      • Fear that unified military will become too powerful
      • Desire of services to preserve their autonomy
      • Interservice rivalries intended by Congress to receive maximum information
  • 1986 defense reorganization plan
    • Joint Chiefs of Staff became uniformed heads of each service with a chair and vice chair appointed by the president and confirmed by the Senate
    • The Chair since 1986 principal military adviser to president
    • Each service headed by a civilian secretary responsible for purchasing and public affairs
    • Under the chain of command the Chair of JCS does not have combat command and there was uncertainty whether 1986 changes will work

U.S Foreign and Defense Policy Agencies

National Security Council (NSC)
  • The National Security Act of 1947 created the National Security Council in order for it to coordinate policy.
  • After World War II, President Truman signed the Act in order to make intelligence and information that could safeguard national defense, easier to obtain and overall faster to organize.
  • Created to coordinate all departments and agencies that play a role in foreign policy
  • It is chaired by the president and includes the vice president, secretaries of state and defense, and usually the director of the CIA, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and the attorney general
  • The staff's goal is to present different perspectives, assist in presidential decision-making, and enforce those decisions.
  • The size and influence of the NSC has grown since the 1960s. The National Security Advisor often rivals the Secretary of State in influencing foreign Policy.

Central Intelligence Agency (CIA)
  • Gathers, analyzes, and distributes intelligence information that is essential to national defense.
  • Conducts worldwide intelligence operations through espionage.
  • Acts within the executive branch; briefs the president and the National Security Council.
  • Successor of the Office of Strategic Services (OSS).
  • Truman established the CIA by signing the National Security Act of 1947 (CIA.gov) .

Immigrant and Naturalization Service (INS)
  • Enforces immigration laws and requirements.
  • Administers immigration benefits such as political asylum.
  • When Bush created the Department of Homeland Security he placed the INS as part of this cabinet.

National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA)
  • Established in 1958
  • Established by Dwight D. Eisenhower
  • Oversees the U.S. space programs
  • NASA's Environmental Research Aircraft and Sensor Technology program developed pilotless airplane technology such as scientific instruments that can fit on a remote controlled aircraft, which can help with foreign affairs like war.

Selective Service System
  • Created when President Woodrow Wilson wanted to join WWI and realized that there wasn't enough mandatory troops to be successful in Europe, and only a few citizens had signed up on their own to fight. The Selective Service Act of 1917 created the Selective Service System
  • For a draft to be reinstated, there would have to be an act of Congress.
  • Manages the draft

Joint Chiefs of Staff
  • Is a committee consisting of the uniformed heads of each of the military services (including the marines), including a chairman and a non-voting vice chairman.
  • The chairman of the JCS is the presidential adviser for all military affairs.
  • Play a critical role in national defense planning. (Wilson 554)
  • They do not have any control of troops and are part of the Executive Office of the President, which means the JCS chair and vice chair are appointed and confirmed by the Senate
  • Are supported by the Joint Staff which consists of several hundred officers from each of the services
  • Civilians are in charge in order to prevent excessive concentration of power
  • The Secretary of Defense is required by the 1986 law to establish guidelines that make sure that officers in the joint staff are promoted as readily as officers outside of the joint staff
  • Each military branch in the Joint Chiefs of Staff is headed by both a civilian secretary and a senior military officer. The civilian is in charge of more bureaucratic affairs while the military officer is in charge of discipline and training in their branch
Presidential use of American Troops
  • The president may send troops where ever he chooses as commander-in-chief and is limited by the war powers act but historically presidents have used the American military to protect American assets.

1801: Thomas Jefferson sent troops to deal with the Barbary pirates (Thus creating the Marines.)
1845: Polk sends troops into Mexico to defend the just taken Texas
1861:Lincoln blockaded southern ports and demanded martial law.
1898: McKinley sends the navy and ground troops in to Cuba to help free Cuba from Spain
1917-1918: Wilson sends troops to Europe to aid the Allies in WWI
1940: FDR sent fifty destroyers to England to help them fight the Germans
1950: Truman commits ground troops to help repel North Korean invasions in South Korea
1957: President Eisenhower sends troops to the Little Rock, Arkansas to escort black students to class since Orville Faubus (the governor at the time) refused to let them enter the school that was still segregated.
1960s: John F. Kennedy and Lyndon Johnson sent American forces into Vietnam without declaring war (Wilson and Dilulio).
2002: George W. Bush sent in troops to Iraq without for formally declaring war although in October of 2002 Congress authorized the use of military force in Iraq through the Iraq War Act (wikianswers)

Government Expansion During Wartime
  • Historically, government has expanded during times of war. Presidents have gained/exercised more power, Congress have been able to spend more money, and bureaucracies have grown in size and power.
    • This was evident during the presidency of Lincoln; he suspended habeas corpus, asserted his power as commander in chief, and issued the historic Emancipation Proclamation, which altered the status of blacks [albeit slightly later on] forever.
  • Industry also becomes booming and profitable, as does marketing war-goods and products in response to a national movement to "support the troops" [I.E: WW2]
Evaluating the Power of the President
  • The power of the President in the eyes of a citizen usually depends on whether they hold a foreign or domestic point of view and also whether they agree with his policies.
  • The Supreme Court has usually backed the federal government when it comes to foreign issues.
  • individual states have few rights in foreign affairs.
  • Generally, the Supreme Court doesn't like to get involved over the government's disputes over rights in foreign affairs because those disputes are a matter for the President and Congress to agree on (534-535).
  • It has been observed that there seem to be "two presidencies," meaning that the president's power in domestic affairs is closely checked and relatively weak, remarkably weaker than his power in foreign affairs, in which he is powerful.
Checks on Presidential Power
  • The most important check is the Congress's power of the purse
  • Congress can set limitations on the President's ability to give military or economic aid to different countries by controlling the amount of money available for the countries.
  • War Powers Act of 1973 (see below)-- check on presidential power by name only (doesn't really do much as it often goes ignored)
  • President must keep house and senate intelligence committees "fully and currently informed" of all intelligence activities.

Aid to other Countries
  • We have many agencies overseas but our American embassy is not fully in control of them.
  • 1974-1978, Congress forces president to halt arms sales to Turkey during its dispute with Greece over Cyprus
  • 1976 Congress denies aid to the pro-Western faction fighting in the Angolan civil war
  • Until it was declared unconstitutional, Congress was able to utilize a legislative veto to prevent the president from selling more than $25M in arms to another country

War Powers Act of 1973: "Congress tried to limit the president's control of the use of military force by passing" this act.
  • Also known as the War Powers Resolution.
  • Before the act, Congress never once stopped military funding for the Vietnam War even though many congressmen were critical of US policies then
  • Regarded as being unconstitutional; this act is not really followed out of tradition of not being followed.
  • President has to report within two days after he sends troops into hostile environments
  • Congress has to approve the use of military force within sixty days of the employment of US troops in hostile environments (Note: the book does not say that a formal declaration of war was necessary, and the US has not made a formal declaration of war since World War II, save for the "War Against Terrorism")
  • If there is no formal declaration of war, then the president must withdraw his troops.
  • If there is a concurrent resolution, in which the president cannot veto, to withdraw troops, then the president is forced to comply.
  • The conflict in Iraq was initially supported because of retaliation purposes after 9/11 and the need for the people to feel their government was going all-out against the threat of terrorism; not ever formally a declared war or military campaign [other than removing Bin Laden and other terrorists associated with 9/11], just deployment of troops.
  • If Congress doesn't approve of the President's actions, he has to withdraw the troops
  • Congress can force the President to remove the troops if Congress passes a concurrent resolution, which the President cannot veto
  • It passed in 1973 over a presidential veto and it placed certain restrictions on the president's ability to use military force.
    • Required the President to notify Congress within 48 hours of deploying troops and declares that the president must bring troops home from hostilities within 60 to 90 days unless Congress extends tis time.
  • However, the War Powers Act has had very little influence on military action
  • Since its passage, every president has sent troops abroad without the approval of Congress -- under the belief that they believe it is unconstitutional
  • Congress is reluctant to cut off funds for military actions
  • Represents the continuing struggle between the President and Congress for foreign policy control.
  • Not many members of Congress would challenge a president that carries out a successful military operation.
  • It would take conflict within the military operation for members of Congress to challenge the President's actions.
  • Many presidents believe the War Powers Act is "an unconstitutional infringement" on their authority. (Benson and Waples)
  • A portion of this act has been considered unconstitutional. In 1983 the Supreme Court rules in the Chadha case that the legislative veto was unconstitutional.
    • The legislative veto, when it existed, could be used by the legislative branch to counter or oppose decisions made by the president.[2]

Intelligence Oversight
  • Because of Richard Nixon and the Watergate scandal, Congress requires the CIA to notify congressional committees about all covert actions, today they need to inform the House and Senate Intelligence committees but they have no authority to halt those actions.
    • Between 1974 and 1980 the CIA had to notify eight different committees. Now the CIA only has to notify the two committees stated above.
  • Congress can create a bill to prevent specific covert actions. An example is between 1982 and 1985 when Congress repeatedly passed the Boland Amendment, which had each of its amendments preventing agencies from giving support to the Nicaraguan Contras
    • After September 11th attack: investigation to find out why the CIA had not warned the country of this risk.
  • There are two groups , The House Intelligence Committees and the Senate Intelligence Committees. These committees do not have the authority to disprove such actions .

Founder's Belief on Foreign Policy
  • George Washington believed in Isolationism, that America should focus on domestic issues rather than involve itself in foreign affairs. He believed that America should not get involved in any wars that do not directly involve itself, and stay out of the conflicts of other nations
  • Today, after the 9/11 Terrorist Attacks the U.S. has started a "War on Terrorism" where it frees nations from oppressive rulers in order to end terrorism which is in direct violation of the founder's beliefs that America should avoid getting involved in the problems of other nations.

Opinions and beliefs about the US with foreign affairs
  • Citizens naturally think the president is solely responsible for foreign policies since the general public is often poorly informed about foreign policy.
  • Many people wish not participate in any type of harm towards any nation and wish to conserve true democracy by not attacking other peaceful nations or declaring a justified war towards them.
  • The public's view and the leader's view are different as more than half of the public supports assassinating terrorists while only 35 percent of the leader's do. (Benson and Waples) Views of political elites tend to dominate opinions on foreign affairs, characterized by four world views.
  • "Each foreign crisis increased the level of public approval of the president, often dramatically", Wilson states
world-views - an opinion of how the US should respond to world problems
  • Four World Views
    • isolationism - opinion that the US should withdraw from world affairs
      • -occurred after WWI in the 1920s and 1930s, ending with the attack on Pearl Harbor
      • view was adopted because war accomplished little but resulted in many American casualties
        • 1920's & 1930's elite & popular opinion opposed involvement in European wars.
      • However, Woodrow Wilson wanted the U.S. to involve itself in making the word "safe for democracy."
      • George Washington in his farewell address urged the U.S. to maintain isolationism.
        • He claimed that the goals of Europe and the U.S. were distinct, and there was no need to become involved in European politics, so that political entanglements would not abound.
      • Isolationism was ended when Pearl Harbor occurred, leading to containment
    • containment - belief that the US should resist the expansion of aggressive nations
      • Also referred to as antiappeasement
      • resulted from WWII to stem the Soviet expansion
      • this was also known as the "iron curtain" policy (as made famous by Woodrow Wilson in his eponymous speech) and the US should stay away from the Soviet Union
      • -The idea of antiappeasement started with the Pearl Harbor attack on Dec. 7, 1941 (Wilson and Dilulio).
      • The idea of containment and the Truman doctrine derived many of its concepts from George F. Kennan's view in regards to foreign policy.
        • This involved the basis that the U.S. resist any move made by the Soviet Union to expand and gain further territory
        • The containment was achieved by creating defensive alliances in Europe and Asia during the late 1940s and 1950s, operating an airlift to aid West Berlin aiding South Korea, and intervening in Vietnam.

    • disengagement (Vietnam) paradigm - reaction to military defeats and the political disaster of Vietnam.
      • Disengagement: the belief that the US was harmed by its war in Vietnam and so should avoid supposedly similar events (Wilson and Dilulio).
      • Foreign policy views were affected for many years, because of what the elites thought about Vietnam.
      • Critics called this view "new isolationism" and argued it would encourage Soviet expansion.
        • When Clinton first assumed office in 1992 he held a view of disengagement. He held a view against significant involvement in foreign politics, which was also supported by the officials he selected. Additionally, the congressmen who had objected in the Gulf War were those that backed Clinton the most.(Wilson)
    • Human rights: According to Wilson, “the view that we should try to improve the lives of people in other countries.
      • Not to be confused with the imperialist concepts of White Mans' Burden
    • According to Wilson, there are some problems with this view, because hardly any human rights advocates had called for U.S. intervention in Rwanda, China, or the Soviet Union-all countries that massacred millions of their own citizens.
      • In Kosovo, Serbian forces were suppressing Albanians. The human rights view claimed that the U.S. should step in and stop this "genocide."
Effects of the September 11 Attacks
  • Created a new cabinet position, Secretary of Homeland Security. (formerly Janet Napolitano and currently Jeh Johnson)
  • The public is now conscious about international terrorism
  • Outbursts of patriotism occurred
  • There was more confidence in the government
  • Raised new fundamental questions about terrorism and our ability to fight it
  • How do we wage war against "terrorism?"
  • How do we hold other nations accountable?
  • How do we act when other nations fight terrorism?
  • Does this type of war require new military tactics?
  • Demonstrated that the president can act more quickly than Congress during a national crisis
  • Creation of the Department of Homeland Security
  • Broke the U.S. out of a decade of isolationism and thrust the country into wars in Afghanistan and Iraq
  • But the most important part became was how to fight an enemy that was hiding in remote areas of the world that used guerrilla warfare and were known to be preaching their hate towards America through the internet and videos.
  • The United States foreign and military policy now focused on terrorism.
  • Made a more aggressive foreign policy under George W. Bush's administration, as emphasized by President Bush's declaration of Either you are with us, or you are with the terrorists."
  • Created a "zero-tolerance" policy on foreign nations that were harbors for terrorists and these nations were seen as "hostile regimes" in the eyes of a post 9/11 government.
  • Doctrine of preemption:attacking a determined enemy before it can launch an attack against us or an ally.
    • "Supporters of this view hailed it as a positive step to defeat terrorist abroad before they could attack us at home"(Wilson and DIlulio).

Bipolar world: a political landscape with two superpowers
  • For example, during the Cold War, the Soviet Union and the United States were the two superpowers.
    • Bush changed American policy so that instead of waiting to be attacked, the United States would respond to any immediate threats before they materialized into an actual attack (Wilson).
  • Much of history took place in a bipolar world; take, for instance, the Anglo-French rivalry of the eighteenth century (and beyond).
Unipolar world: a political landscape with one superpower.
  • Today America is the sole superpower. Despite our position as a superpower, we are just as vulnerable to terrorist attacks (as proved by the 9/11 attacks).
  • The nature of warfare has changed in a unipolar world as well. From the American standpoint, no single nation poses as great a threat as organized terrorist rings operating independently of national governments, and enemies in present conflicts are not as easily identifiable as in times past (Oxford Companion to American Military History).
Third World: refers to the nations neutral in the Cold War, but now means almost any undeveloped nation in Africa, Asia, Latin America, or the Middle East (Wilson). Third world countries can be referred to as nonaligned nations or developing countries.
Fourth World: refers to underdeveloped nations that have no oil reserves, and therefore must pay heavily for imported oil. (Wilson)

Landmark cases in dealing with foreign affairs
  • Curtiss-Wright Export Corp. v U.S. (1936): American foreign policy is vested entirely in the federal government where the president has plenary power. The case detailed government regulation of business and the executive branch's authority to conduct foreign affairs. The ruling in this case established the broader principle of executive supremacy in national security and foreign affairs.
  • Curtiss-Wright is regularly cited to support executive branch claims of power to act without congressional authorization in foreign affairs, especially when there is no judicial intervention to interpret the meaning of that text.(

299 [[/wiki/United_States_Reports|U.S.]] 304 ([[/wiki/List_of_United_States_Supreme_Court_cases,_volume_299|more]]) 299 U.S. 304, 57 S.Ct. 216, 81 L.Ed. 255)

  • Korematsu v US (1944): Sending Japanese American to relocation centers during WW II was based on an acceptable military justification. This case took into account the constitutionality of Executive Order 9066, which required Japanese-Americans to be excluded from a west coast military area. This case sparked much controversy and is why Americans look back on the Japanese internment camps with regret for past actions.
  • The case was one of the first times the Supreme Court applied the strict scrutiny standard to racial discrimination by the government([[/wiki/Case_citation|323 U.S. 214]] (1944))
  • Youngstown Sheet & Tube Co. v Sawyer (1952): the president may not seize factories during wartime without explicit congressional authority even when they are threatened by a strike.
  • The case is used today by members of congress to asses Executive Power

Important Military Interventions since 1950
1954: U.S. helps overthrow Marxist government in Guatemala (Wilson 547).
1958: U.S. troops sent to Lebanon (Wilson 547).
1961: U.S. sponsored the Bay of Pigs (Invasion of Cuba) which failed under Kennedy. The reason it had failed was Cuba was aware of some sort of attack and the battle was disastrous. Kennedy bravely took the blame, and even though it was a failure his popularity remained positive as he honestly took the blame and informed the American people rather then try and cover it up like later presidents after him would try and do.
1961-1975: U.S troops in Vietnam
1962: U.S blockade of Cuba (Cuban Missile Crisis)
1965: U.S troops go to the Dominican Republic to prevent Communist takeover.
1980: U.S military rescue of U.S hostages in Iran is unsuccessful
1981: U.S military advisers go to El Salvador to help the government.
1982-1989: Guerrillas, who were anti-government, were support by the CIA in Nicaragua
1983: In order to get rid of a pro-Cuba government, the U.S. invaded Grenada; in '83 United States Marines also served as a "peacekeeping force" in Lebanon until 984.
1983: U.S. Marines sent to Lebanon to keep the peace
1984: The Red Sea was mine swept by the U.S.
1987: The United States Navy escorted tankers through the Persian Gulf
1989: In order to remove the dictator, Manuel Noriega, the U.S. invaded Panama.
1991: U.S. troops with other countries force Iraq to end its invasion of Kuwait.
2001: The United States attacked Afghanistan in order to end the Taliban regime.
2003: Iraq is attacked by the U.S.

2001 Terrorist attack brought new questions to American foreign policy
  • If terrorists are sheltered or supported by nations that are otherwise friendly to the United States, what do we do about these countries?
  • Should the United States allow other nations to wage war against terrorists or should we try to be mediators?

What Do We Get with Our Money?
Cost overruns: According to Wilson, when the money actually paid to military suppliers exceeds the estimated costs.

Reasons cost overruns occur: (overruns are almost a given for any new type of product, especially when it comes to making simple things operable in different circumstances, such as a coffeemaker on an airplane)
1) Government often underestimates the costs of products and spend too much in the end
2) Constituencies who support a program intentionally understate the costs to persuade Congress to allot money
3) some costs are unpredictable
4) Gold plating: According to Wilson, the tendency of Pentagon officials to ask weapons contractors to meet excessively high requirements.
- Often times pentagon officials want the best of everything all at the same time making it nearly impossible to supply it all without expensive costs.
5) Prices paid for products are high because of the lack of competition that develop as the government buys from single sources
6) Inefficiency in budget cuts through extending the length of time of a contract(only lowers budget for a short period of time)

Solutions to these problems:
  • The Pentagon could give realistic cost estimates
  • Ask for weapons that meet a few critical requirements
  • The government could encourage competition with defense contractors
  • Stop trying to cut the budget by using the "smoke and mirrors" technique

The Defense Budget

  • How much money do we spend? (majoritarian politics)
  • How is it divided up? (interest group bargaining)
Total Spending
  • At first, we did not have a large military forces during peacetime. The military budget shot up during the Reagan administration.
  • After the war with Korea, spending and military disarming did not go decline like usual. Instead the U.S. was on guard with the containment policy.
    • U.S. built up a military system that would defend itself and its allies against invasions and domestic uprising.
  • Military spending was less after the Korean War, up again during the Vietnam War, and when the USSR invaded, Afghanistan, spending increased.
    • These spending changes "reflect changes in public opinion."
    • After the USSR collapsed, many debates occurred. Liberals wanted to cut defense spending and use the money for domestic social programs. Many conservatives argued that we needed to be on guard just in case Russia would become hostile again.
    • Then Saddam Hussein 's aggression and the issue in Kosovo left U.S. the "world's policeman." Liberals argued the U.S. could not afford it.
  • National budget deficit was eliminated in 1999 at which time President Clinton and the Republican Congress asked for more military spending (Wilson).
  • The United States has a level of military spending that is greater than the next 10 nations combined. (approx. $600 Billion (U.S) vs. approx. $560 Billion (Next 10 Countries, China to Brazil))

What do we pay for?
Personnel: primarily soldiers
  • Until 1973 the United States relied on the draft to obtain military personnel (Wilson 550).
  • An all volunteered force was instituted after Vietnam.
  • Is the most costly factor of military spending
  • Volunteer force grew as a result of: increased pay & rising civilian unemployment
  • According to Wilson, Congress in 1993, ended the law forbearing women serving on navy combat ships and air force fighter jets. And in 1994 the Pentagon rules created a "Don't ask, don't tell" policy towards homosexual conduct in the military.
Big ticket items: planes, missiles, submarines, tanks, aircraft carriers
The difference between actual costs and estimated costs. May result in cost overruns.
Cost overruns occur when the money paid to military suppliers actually exceeds the estimated costs of the purchase (Wilson 551).

  • 5 main reasons for cost overruns:
    • Unpredictability of cost of new items
    • Contractor incentives to underestimate at first
    • Military chiefs want the best weapons money can buy and have very high requirements for such weapons, and as a result, very few requirements are actually met.
    • "Sole sourcing" of weapons without competitive bids, meaning that the government would lose the opportunity of getting any weapons if the sole manufacturer's company were to shut down. The government would do whatever it can to help the company should it ever risk shutting down.
    • Holding down budget by "stretching out" production. To the eyes of the public, it makes it seem as if the budget is being cut, but in reality, in the long run, costs would actually rise with each unit (Wilson).
  • Unpredictability of cost of new items cannot be controlled, but the rest can.
  • Military chiefs want the best weapons money can buy no matter the cost.
  • Most of these military chiefs are officials that come directly from those that operate these airplanes or submarines and therefore they want the best that money can buy (Wilson 552).
  • Military chiefs want us to be the only country with a certain weapon (sole sourcing).
Small ticket items: small equipment (coffeemaker) that will fit into small spaces (airplane).
  • Our government never spent $435 on a hammer, it was only a myth. A member of congress tried to exploit an issue that was actually a pentagon miscalculation. The problem is not with hammers because anyone can get a hammer for $20. The problem lies with items that are not easily available.
  • Take for instance the coffee maker that is so expensive because of the government's tendency to gold-plate their designs
  • Someone somewhere will want not just a normal coffee maker, they will want one that operates in space or upside-down, this want is sometimes referred to as gold-plating.
  • Instead of paying $50 dollars for a coffee maker, now the government will pay an outrageous $7600 for the coffee maker.
Readiness: client politics makes readiness a low priority (after building equipment and maintaining bases). Cuts in other sections of the defense budget will hurt geographic areas and will anger the congressmen representing the areas.
  • The military has few groups in Congress to support military readiness
  • The peacetime forces will devote a lot of their time and money improving their readiness.
  • For a while, a lot of bases were being opened, but only a few closed
  • Commission on Base Realignment and Closure formed to remove client politics from base closing.
  • Services often prefer to allocate money to developing and buying weapons than to spend money on readiness
Bases: In 1988, Congress concluded that no base would ever be closed unless the system for making decisions was changed (Wilson and Dilulio).
  • The Commission on Base Realignment and Closure was created in 1988 who would consider recommendations from the secretary of defense. According to Wilson, by law Congress would have to vote within 45 days for or against the commission's list as a whole, without having a chance to amend it.
  • Closing military bases is often controversial because congressmen from the affected areas are aware of the negative impact these actions will have on the local economy and strive to keep them open at all costs.
  • A congressional commissions report in 1988 led to the closing of many military bases between 1989 and 1991.
  • Congress has figured out how to make some decisions that most members know are right but each member individually might find it politically necessary to oppose.
Privatization: The military has saved money in peacetime by privatizing some functions such as feeding and housing troops. This action can be very expensive during times of conflict nevertheless and it is looked upon suspiciously when American companies affiliated with political leaders get the profits.
Checks on Presidential Power
  • Checks on Presidential powers regarding foreign policy are not as much constitutional as they are political. Congress controls funds to president's policy and it can limit presidents ability to provide aid to foreign countries.
  • Limitations on the president's ability to give military or economic aid to other countries
  • Presidents have been relatively strong in foreign affairs.
  • Yet presidents have been comparatively weak in foreign affairs by the standards of other nations.
  • The Wars Powers Act passed in 1973 set restrictions on the president's ability to use military force
  • Intelligence oversight must keep the House and the Senate Intelligence Committees "fully and currently informed" of all intelligence activities and covert actions

Mass v. Elite Opinions
Mass Opinion (the public):
  • The public is generally poorly informed
  • The public generally see's The United States as needing to play a serious role when it comes to international roles.
  • Generally support the president
  • Conservative, and less of an internationalist
  • The average citizen was highly opposed to the college protests of the Vietnam war that took place on college campuses.
  • The public thinks/ wants the United States to be less active in overseas affairs and to start worrying more about protecting jobs. The public also wants the U.S to give less economic aid to overseas countries (Wilson and Dilulio).
Elite Opinion:
  • Better informed
  • Plays a more powerful role, but is divided into four worldviews: isolationism, containment, disengagement, and human rights.
  • Changes their opinions quicker, an example can be seen in the Vietnam war, where college educated people gave more support at the beginning of the war, but by the end of it more opposed it.
  • Protest on moral or philosophical issues
  • More liberal and internationalist
-When it comes to expanding economic aid to other countries, the 61% of the elite agreed whereas only 8% of the public agreed (Wilson and Dilulio 541).

Majoritarian View of Military:
  • All American benefit and everyone also pays; Americans that perhaps have a loved one in the war may pay more than the rest of the population (Wilson 546).
  • President in the Commander-in-Chief
  • Congress plays a large supportive role
  • Pro-war until soldiers are brought home dead, then ask for an escalation in military forces.
  • Majoritarian views state that the military's purpose is to defend its country or help other country's defend themselves (Wilson 546).

Client Political View of Military:
  • Congress reap the benefits from defense contracts while everyone else pays
  • The real beneficiaries of military spending are the generals and admirals, as well as corporations and members of Congress whose distracts get defense contracts
  • Military industrial complex shapes what is to be spent
  • Military industrial complex : an alleged alliance between military leaders and corporate leaders.
    • the supposed alliance is a relationship where the industries providing military equipment get huge sums of money for their products from the government, while the tax-payers take the blow
    • military buying $435 hammers for instance, would represent the waste that is involved (Wilson and Dilulio 546)

What we (the public) gain from our money contributed to Military:
  • Change from drafted military to an all-volunteered military (started in 1973)
  • The volunteer force improve due to military pay and the increase in unemployment
  • More women involved in the military
  • The "don't ask, don't tell" compromise for homosexuals in the military
  • "When Americans pay taxes that fund the military, they finance a force designed to meet the needs of the new century" (Fast Track to a 5).
    • The war on terrorism, unlike WWI and WWII, relies on modern military characteristics such as special forces, guerrilla fighters, and close coordination between military workers.

The Constitutional and Legal Context
  1. The powers of the president and of Congress in foreign affairs is defined by the Constitution in such a way that it pits the two against each other. This is proven through many examples of checks and balances.
    1. The president is commander in chief of the armed forces.
    2. Congress must appropriate money, however, for the establishment and maintenance of those forces.
    3. The president appoints ambassadors to other nations.
    4. The Senate must first approve and confirm these ambassadors before they can begin work.
    5. The president may negotiate treaties with the heads of foreign nations.
    6. The Senate must ratify these by a two-thirds vote in order for them to become binding.
  2. Though one might expect the Congress to be supreme over the president in foreign affairs, based on the previously enumerated examples, this is not the case. It has been shown that the president is much more powerful than the framers intended in the area of international diplomacy. This is because if Congress were to actually exercise any of these formal powers against the will of the president in areas of foreign policy, they'd likely be enacting political suicide as such actions would anger the public.

Trade Policy
  • According to the Princeton Review, "Foreign nations depend on the United States as a market for their products, as we depend on them for ours."
  • The economic outputs of California alone ranks among the top ten nations in the world. The economic outputs of each of the three cities of Los Angeles, Chicago and New York rank among the output of the top 20 nations. (Princeton Review)
  • The United States has a trade deficit: the US imports more goods than it exports.
  • Balance of trade: the ratio of imported products to exported products
  • Trade deficits cause wealth to flow from a nation, leading to nations placing restrictions on imported goods.
  • US signed the GATT (General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade) in order to promote free trade. The GATT eventually turned into the WTO (World Trade Organization).
  • WTO aims to "lower tariffs and quotas and reduce unfair trade practices" (Princeton Review). Nations in the WTO make up approximately 97% of world trade.
  • The North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) was signed by Canada, Mexico, and the United States in order to promote free trade. This got rid of tariffs on imported goods.
  • The (NAFTA) is opposed by U.S. industrial labor unions because of their fear that jobs will be lost to cheap Mexican labor. Others fear that the industrial capacity of the United States will be damaged because factories will move to Mexico where environmental laws are not strictly enforced. (Princeton Review)

America’s Foreign Policy During:
  • 1800-1868: Washington’s proclamation of neutrality became the country’s foreign policy doctrine.
  • 1870-1917: America had finish expanding westward. The growth resulted in a need to expand its markets. By the turn of the century, imperialism was a factor in going to war with Spain.
  • 1917-19445: Attempts to remain neutral failed and the United States enter “the war to end all wars.” Senate rejected our attempt to be part of the League of Nations.
  • 1945-1962: Allied powers agreed on the destruction of Nazi Germany. However distrust was born between the U.S. and Russia. The U.S. emerges as a world super power.
  • 1962-1978: Containment of communism. The support for the cold war collapsed during the Vietnam War. Nixon tied “Viet-namazing” the war. However, the war escalated when Nixon invaded Cambodia. Congress passed the War Powers Act.
  • 1978-1987: The Reagan foreign policy doctrine was a mix of anti-Soviet rhetoric and cynicism toward new efforts for détente, balanced by a readiness to negotiate with Gorbachev and respond to his overtures.
  • 1987-Present: Bush proclaimed the Cold War over and stated that the U.S. should take the lead in establishing a new world order.
(AP U.S. Government and Politics, Barron’s, 2009)

Axis of Evil
  • In the 2002 State of the Union address, President Bush suggested that there was this axis of evil which consisted of Iran, Iraq, and North Korea.
  • After the speech was made, the Bush Administration began a series of policies that aimed to neutralized these countries terrorist policies.

The New Problem of Terrorism

  • Bipolar World - A political landscape with two superpowers.
  • Unipolar World - A political landscape with one superpower.
  • After 9/11 President George W. Bush decided that rather than waiting to be attacked, America "will act against such emerging threats before they are fully formed" (Wilson 555).
    • The Doctrine of Preemption is of attacking a determined enemy before it can launch an attack against us or an ally.
    • An example would be when Clinton launched a cruise missile strike against training camps that followers of Osama Bin Laden were using in the aftermath of their bombing of American embassies in Africa.
  • Party differences and political ideologies now make a big difference in foreign policy.
  • People do not always support the nation when we go to war. An example would be when we fought North Vietnam. But we did see support in the war with Korea.
  • President must keep house and senate intelligence committees "fully and currently informed" of all intelligence activities.
  • After the Cold War, the US did not have a common enemy that has justified a non partisan view (Wilson, 555).
    • America had success in rebuilding such places as Germany and Japan.
  • America learned from past mistakes not to pull back forces from the country too early (Wilson, 557).
  • The US does not always get support from the UN such as in occupying Haiti (Wilson, 555). They also had problems in Somalia.

  1. ^ Wilson, James Q., and John J. Dilulio. American Government: Institutions and Policies. Tenth ed. Boston, MA: Charles Hartford, 2006. Print.
  2. ^ Wilson, James Q., and John J. Dilulio. American Government: Institutions and Policies. Tenth ed. Boston, MA: Charles Hartford, 2006. Print.
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