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American Foreign Policy: Alliance Politics in a Century of War, 1914-2014


American Foreign Policy: Alliance Politics in a Century of War, 1914-2014 Cover


Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

The text aims to uncover the roots of the United States' near perpetual involvement in war since the beginning of WWI in 1914. Using alliance politics as the main framework of analysis, it offers a new interpretation that contrasts with the traditional views that war is an interruption of the American foreign policy emphasis on diplomacy. Instead, it posits that war has been the norm during the past century while peaceful interludes were but a time of respite and preparation for the next conflict.

After a thorough discussion of the concepts of alliance building and the containment doctrine, the work then addresses such themes as the alliance networks used to confront German and Japanese powers during the early 20th century wars, the role of alliances in containing the Soviet Union during the Cold War, the creation of alliances to restrict and defeat rogue state powers, and whether they were useful when dealing with the challenges posed by terrorism in the post-9/11 world.

Each chapter features case studies, a summary, references, and web links. In addition, the book utilizes primary sources, such as U.S. Department of Defense and State documents and presidential statements. An exhaustive study of containment and alliance, this text will be an essential resource for anyone studying U.S. foreign policy, international relations, and national security.

About the Author

James W. Peterson is the head of the Department of Political Science at Valdosta State University, USA. He is a specialist in comparative politics, American foreign policy, and public administration. He is the author of several publications on Czech foreign policy, integration of ten new nations in NATO, and party politics in the Czech Republic.

Table of Contents

a. An Abrupt End to a Century and a Quarter of Isolationism
b. Alliance Theory and the Evolution of American Defense Policy
c. Expanded Definition and Utility of the Containment Doctrine both before and after the Cold War

Part I. Alliance Networks and the Defeat of German and Japanese Power: Early Twentieth-Century Wars, 1914-45

1. World War I, 1914-18
a. Noninvolvement, 1914-17
b. Pivotal Role, 1917-18
c. President Woodrow Wilson, Fourteen Points, New States in Central Europe, and Non-Membership in the League of Nations

2. World War II, 1938-45
a. Neutrality, 1938-41
b. Two Front Command, 1941-45
c. Presidents Franklin D. Roosevelt and Harry Truman, Marshall Plan, NATO, and Permanent Engagement

Part II. Role of Alliances in Containing the Power of the Soviet Union: Late Twentieth-Century Cold War, 1945-61

3. War of Nerves with the Soviet Union
a. Cuba as the Centerpiece, 1961-62
b. Saber-Rattling over Berlin, 1961 and after
c. Nuclear Weapons Build-up and Limitations

4. Korean War: Permanent Stalemate, 1950-53

5. War in Southeast Asia: Absence of Victory, 1964-73

Part III. Creation of Alliances to Restrict and Defeat Rogue State Power: Immediate Post-Cold War Period, 1991-2001

6. Checking Saddam Hussein and Iraq, 1991
7. Checking Milosevic and Serbia, 1992-99a. Bosnia and the Dayton Accord, 1992-95
b. Kosovo and the NATO Bombing Campaign, 1999

Part IV. Utility and Disutility of Alliances in Dealing with Challenges from Terrorist Power: Post-9/11 World, 2001-14

8. War in Afghanistan
a. Stage One: Defeat of the Taliban, 2001-02
b. Stage Two: Engaged in a Long Twilight Struggle with the Taliban and al Qaeda, 2002-14

9. War in Iraq
a. Stage One: Defeat of the Saddam Hussein Regime, March to May 2003
b. Stage Two: Caught in a Swamp of Ethnic Conflict, al Qaeda, and anti-Americanism, 2003-14

10. New and Continuing Challenges from the Middle East and North Africa

Conclusion: A Century of Continuing War and Increasing Complexity
a. Alliance Networks and the Defeat of Enemy European and Asian States, 1914-45
b. Role of Alliances in Containing the Power of a Universalist State and its Empire, 1945-91
c. Creation of Alliances to Restrict and Defeat Rogue States and their Regional Power, 1991-2001
d. Utility and Disutility of Alliances in Dealing with Challenges from Aggressive Terrorism - beneath, above, beyond, and within the Nation-State, 2001-14

Product Details

Peterson, James W
Bloomsbury Academic
Peterson, James W.
Security (National & International)
Military - United States
Politics - General
Edition Description:
Trade paper
Publication Date:
9 x 6 in 1 lb

Related Subjects

History and Social Science » Military » US Military » General
History and Social Science » Politics » General
History and Social Science » Politics » United States » Foreign Policy

American Foreign Policy: Alliance Politics in a Century of War, 1914-2014 Used Trade Paper
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