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Making Foreign Policy

U.S. foreign policy encompasses a huge number of issues affected billions of people around the globe. Find out is US foreign policy made and implemented.
  1. 2012 Election (30)
  2. Public Opinion (7)
  3. The 2008 Election (25)
  4. The Bush Administration (6)
  5. The Obama Administration (57)

Epochs Of US Foreign Policy, Part Three
The third epoch of US foreign policy saw America become a global power -- whether it liked it or not.

Epochs Of US Foreign Policy, Part Two
After early concentration on domestic issues, the United States embarked on an abortive attempt at imperialism.

Epochs Of US Foreign Policy
The First Epoch of American Foreign Policy -- the isolationist Early Federal Period.

Obama Sends US Troops To Chad
Obama sends US troops to Chad searching for kidnapped girls, a move totally in line with his administration's foreign policy.

Tragedy, Fear Overshadow Obama 2014 Asia Trip
Tragedies and threats overshadowed Barack Obama's 2014 Asia-Pacific trip.

Perry Opens Japan
Commodore Matthew Perry opens trade with Japan and sets the stage for 160 years of US-Japanese foreign policy.

Is Brinkmanship Back?
In Vladimir Putin, old style foreign policy "brinkmanship" is making a comeback. Or maybe it never really left.

Politicizing The Ukrainian Crisis
Rand Paul opens a 2016 election-season attack on Obama's handling of the Ukraine Crisis.

U.S. Options In Crimea
The U.S. is trying several options, including sanctions and diplomacy, to resolve the crisis in Crimea.

The Ukraine Crisis
US stands back as EU brokers tentative deal to end violence in Ukraine.

US-Russian Cooperation

Does Nuland's F-Bomb Make Any Difference?
Victoria Nuland's F-bomb reveals more about humans under pressure than American opinions of the European Union.

Obama's 2014 SOTU Address
Obama's 2014 SOTU address, as expected, offered little in the way of foreign policy substance.

Myth Of American "Disengagement"
John Kerry rails against myth of American disengagement.

Major Foreign Policy Moments In American Intelligence
A list of major foreign policy moments in U.S. intelligence.

Paul Revere And The NSA?

Obama's NSA Reforms
President Obama revealed his plan to reform the operations of the National Security Agency (NSA) on January 17. He paid special attention to the foreign policy implications of his plan.

Will The Obama-Castro Handshake Really Matter?
In the end, the handshake between Barack Obama and Raul Castro probably will not hasten any change between the U.S. and Cuba.

The 1980s Battle Over Apartheid Sanctions
The Reagan administration didn't necessarily like apartheid in the 1980s, but it was comfortable with it. It's foreign policy with South Africa reflected that.

When The U.S. Didn't Like Mandela
It's hard to believe now, but there was a time when the U.S. didn't like Nelson Mandela, thanks to Cold War foreign policy.

John F. Kennedy's Inaugural Address

Kennedy And Vietnam

Kennedy, Cuba, And The Bay Of Pigs

Kennedy and Khrushchev

Asteroid Hunting With The UN

When U.S. And France Were Really Enemies; Part 2

When The U.S. And France Were Really Enemies: Part 1

London 11 Look Toward Geneva II, Hope For Answer To Syria War

The Ludlow Amendment
Unlike 2013, when Congress was eager to debate an American military strike against Syria, 75 years earlier Congress nearly gave away its right to debate and declare war. It never actually happened, but it came close in the days of American isolationism something called the Ludlow Amendment.

U.S. Credibility and Foreign Policy
History, just as the Syrian dilemma of 2013, shows that maintaining foreign policy credibility is a difficult balancing act.

Of A Park On The Moon
Two U.S. Representatives have introduced legislation to make national parks out of equipment that American astronauts left on the Moon between 1969 and 1972.

Democracy Promotion As Foreign Policy
A look at the U.S. policy of promoting democracy.

The Reagan Doctrine, Pt. 1
The Reagan Doctrine was a policy of rolling back, not just containing, Communism.

Kerry Challenges Wisdom Of Sequestration
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry used his first major policy speech to challenge the wisdom of the federal budget sequestration.

Foreign Policy Highlights Of 2013 State Of The Union Address
U.S. foreign policy highlights of President Barack Obama's 2013 State of the Union address.

What Is A Doctrine?
The word "doctrine" gets tossed about a lot in foreign policy. Here is a Foreign Policy 101 look at what makes up a doctrine, and some of the most famous doctrines in U.S. foreign policy.

The U.S. Secretary Of State
A look at the origin of the U.S. secretary of state's job, and his traditional duties.

Foreign Policy In Obama's Second Inaugural Address
In his second inaugural address on January 21, 2013, United States President Barack Obama spoke mostly about domestic issues and using the collective strength of the American people to overcome obstacles. But he referenced some foreign policy issues as well.

United Nations Treaty On Mercury Pollution
The United States and more than 139 other nations have agreed to a first-ever treaty limiting mercury pollution.

Who Makes U.S. Foreign Policy?
A basic look at the different people and agencies that help craft United States foreign policy.

U.S. Foreign Policy Year In Review, 2012
A look at the top U.S. foreign policy stories of 2012.

The Christmas Bombing
The Christmas season of 1972 brought a brutal American air campaign over North Vietnam. Known as the Christmas Bombing, it was President Richard Nixon's practice of foreign policy by force.

A Biography of John Kerry
Sources report that President Barack Obama is about to nominate Massachusetts Senator John Kerry, chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations committee, to replace Hillary Clinton as U.S. Secretary of State.

Rice Withdraws From Secretary Of State Consideration
U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. Susan Rice withdrew her name from consideration for the Secretary of State position on December 13, 2012.

U.S. Chemical Weapons Diplomatic History
U.S. warnings to Syria against chemical weapons usage underscore America's long adherence to anti-chemical weapons policies.

Obama Makes First Presidential Visit To Burma
From November 17 to November 20, 2012, U.S. President Barack Obama and U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton traveled through Southeast Asia, shoring up U.S. relations there. The trip included the first ever visits by a U.S. president to Burma (Myanmar) and Cambodia.

U.S. Energy Independent By 2035?
The International Energy Agency reports that the U.S. could be energy independent by 2035.

Who Will Replace Hillary Clinton As Secretary of State?
President Barack Obama has a choice of many qualified people to replace Secretary of State Hillary Clinton when his second term begins in January 2013. Here is a look at some of the top possibilities.

Foreign Policy Issues Awaiting Obama In His Second Term
A look at the foreign policy issues that greet President Obama as he enters a second term.

Fiftieth Anniversary of Cuban Missile Crisis
The release of Robert F. Kennedy documents coincides with the fiftieth anniversary of the Cuban Missile Crisis.

2012 Presidential Foreign Policy Debate
Mitt Romney offered little substance in the final presidential debate of 2012, which focused on U.S. foreign policy. Instead he agreed with most of President Barack Obama's current policies.

Romney Calls For Stronger Space Program
Mitt Romney has issued white paper on space exploration in an attempt to reinvigorate his campaignand differentiate himself from Obama.

Neil Armstong Dies At Age 82
Neil Armstrong, who died August 25, 2012, at age 82, was both the first man on the Moon and an agent of U.S. foreign policy.

Does Foreign Policy Matter In 2012 Presidential Election?
While Romney and Ryan bet that Americans this election year will be voting only on the economy, recent polls indicate that foreign policy issues still matter to voters.

Ryan No Stronger On Foreign Policy Than Romney
Romney's choice of Paul Ryan as vice-presidential running mate means the Republican is continuing to craft his campaign in terms of domestic economic policy, not foreign policy.

Top Foreign Policy-Driven U.S. Presidential Elections
Domestic concerns, such as the economy and jobs, often figure more prominently to voters during presidential elections than do foreign policy concerns. That will probably be the case in the 2012 election. However, there have been several elections where foreign policy issues were preeminent to voters.

Presidential Incumbency and U.S. Foreign Policy
Incumbency offers presidential candidates certain advantages. The presidential election of 2012 is no exception. Foreign policy platforms, however, may have less impact on voters than domestic policies.

Romney's July 2012 Foreign Policy Speech to VFW
On July 24, 2012, Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney gave only the second foreign policy address of his campaign, and the first since a speech at the Citadel in October 2011.

Berlin Olympics Caused U.S. Policy Furror
The 1936 Olympic games, held in Nazi Germany, were among the most controversial of the modern Olympic Games. They sparked debate in American foreign policy whether the U.S. should boycott the event.

When The U.S. Boycotted The Summer Olympics
The 1980 Olympics became enmeshed in American foreign policy as the U.S. boycotted the games to protest the Soviet Union's invasion of Afghanistan.

Sports Diplomacy Echoes Olympic Creed
The U.S. State Department's Sports Diplomacy initiative champions the same qualities as the Olympic Games.

Obama, Putin Set Bilateral Meeting On Trade
President Barack Obama and Russian President Vladimir Putin were expected to discuss trade at a bilateral meeting as part of the G20 2012 economic summit.

The U.N. and Syria
Kofi Annan declares that U.N. plan for peace in Syria is not working, and he blames Syrian president Bashar Al-Assad for its failure. Still, he has not given up on a peace plan for Syria.

Good Will, Trade Characterize U.S.-Vietnam Relations
Nearly forty years after the end of the Vietnam War, the United States and Vietnam are enjoying a period of diplomatic and economic good will.

What Do You Think Of Nixon Now?
Richard Nixon is best known for Watergate and his resignation from the U.S. presidency. Still, he was an adroit foreign policy expert, and he skillfully laid a cornerstone of the Communist collapse by opening U.S. relations with China and starting "detente" with the Soviet Union. Eighteen years after his death, is history now kinder to Nixon...

Reader Responses
Presidents and Secretaries of State are the top U.S. foreign policy makers. Have you ever met one -- that is, actually had a chance to talk to one? Tell us about it!

NATO Summit Brings Obama Victory
The NATO 2012 summit in Chicago brought President Barack Obama a diplomatic victory on European missile defense.

G8 2012 List of Declarations
The G8 group of industrial nations that met at Camp David in May 2012 made a list of important, but predictable declarations.

NATO Meets in Chicago
NATO leaders meet in Chicago May 20-21, 2012, to discuss future of NATO missions and funding.

G8 Meeting At Camp David
The G8 nations plan a summit for May 18-19, 2012, at Camp David.

Nixon Goes To China
President Richard Nixon went to China in 1972, paving the way for normalized relations between the two countries.

Profile: U.S. Ambassador To China Gary Locke
A profile of Gary Locke, U.S. Ambassador to China.

Hamilton Fish, 26th U.S. Secretary of State
A brief look at the tenure of Hamilton Fish, 26th U.S. Secretary of State

The U.S. and Great Britain: Origins Of The Special Relationship
A look at 19th Century events in the diplomatic "special relationship" between the United States and Great Britain.

Why No U.S. Intervention In Syria?
The United States led the NATO intervention in Libya, but don't expect it to do so in Syria. The reasons are many and varied.

U.S. State Department 2013 Budget Proposal
An overview of the United States State Department allocation in the Fiscal Year 2013 federal budget.

The Marshall Plan
The post-World War II Marshall Plan to help the recovery of Europe was the grandfather of all U.S. foreign aid projects.

A Code Of Conduct For Space
United States proposes a Code of Conduct for Space to limit congestion in Earth orbit.

Obama, Panetta Announce "Leaner" Military
President Obama announced on January 5, 2012, that, in the wake of budget constraints and changing strategic needs, the U.S. military is going to become "leaner."

Top U.S. Foreign Policy Stories of 2011
A 2011 list of the year's top foreign policy stories.

U.S. Opens Virtual Iranian Embassy
The United States opened a "virtual" embassy in Tehran, Iran, on December 6, 2011; within 12 hours the government of Iran blocked the site from Iranian internet users.

Historical Relations Of The U.S. and Australia
The United States and Australia have a long history of cooperative relations, much of it the result of shared wartime experiences.

Open Mic Gaffes In US Foreign Policy
When open mics at the G20 summit caught Nicolas Sarkozy calling Benjamin Netanyahu a "liar," the incident pointed out the need for caution against "loose lips" in foreign policy.

U.S. Vets Who Later Made Foreign Policy
Many U.S. soldiers have gone on to make U.S. foreign policy. Here are my top ten.

American Manifest Destiny
While the term "Manifest Destiny" sounds like it is strictly historical, it also more subtly applies to the tendency of U.S. foreign policy to push democratic nation-building around the globe.

The War Powers Act of 1973
A description of the War Powers Act of 1973, its function and intent.

US Congress Blocks Aid To Palestine
The United States Congress as frozen aid to Palestine.

Proposed Syria Sanctions Act of 2011
A look at a U.S. Senate proposal to levy stronger sanctions against Syria.

The Bush Doctrine
The Bush Doctrine of US foreign policy combined elements of unilateralism with preventive warfare.

The Role of the Congress
The U.S. Senate and House of Representatives have a significant role to play in shaping and directing U.S. foreign policy.

A Biography of Dennis Ross
A biography of Dennis Ross, National Security Advisor and Special Assistant to President Obama

An Overview of How America Relates to the World
Find out who really shapes US foreign policy.

The Role of the Executive Branch
The President of the United States has broad power to direct U.S. foreign policy. But who helps? And what are the limits?

The Role of the U.S. Secretary of State
The Secretary of State (the position is more commonly called "Foreign Minister" in other countries) is the highest ranking, non-elected person in the U.S. government.

House Committee on Foreign Affairs
The House Committee on Foreign Affairs oversees legislation and budgetary matters related to the international relations of the United States.

Senate Foreign Relations Committee
The Senate Foreign Relations Committee has oversight over the foreign policy agencies of the U.S. government, including the State Department, the U.S. Agency for International Development, the Millennium Challenge Corporation, and the Peace Corps. The Committee reviews and considers all diplomatic nominations and international treaties, as well as legislation relating to U.S. foreign policy.

The Role of Think Tanks and NGOs
Foreign policy centers, membership groups, and service organizations have a stake in America's international relationships. They also wield considerable influence among policy makers.

The Role of State and Local Governments
State and local governments are playing a larger role than ever in shaping America's presence abroad. But the role is still limited.

U.S. Foreign Policy People
An index of foreign policy people on the About U.S. Foreign Policy site.

U.S. Foreign Policy Institutions
From Brookings to the United Nations, there are a number of institutions important to the creation and implementation of U.S. foreign policy. Here are a number of profiles from About U.S. Foreign Policy.

Citizens Groups Making a Difference in U.S. Foreign Policy
A number of citizens groups are out there making a difference in U.S. Foreign Policy. Keith Porter--your About Guide to U.S. Foreign Policy--explains.

How Much We Spend on US Foreign Policy
How much does America's desire for global engagement cost?

How News Coverage Impacts American Foreign Policy
The lack of solid news coverage of world affairs has a profound effect on American foreign policy.

Profile: The RAND Corporation
A profile of the RAND Corporation, one of America's oldest foreign policy think tanks, from About Guide to U.S. Foreign Policy Keith Porter.

Profile: The Center for American Progress
A profile of the Center for American Progress, an influential American group working on progressive approaches to a variety of issues including U.S. foreign policy, from About Guide to U.S. Foreign Policy Keith Porter.

Profile: The Heritage Foundation
A profile of the Heritage Foundation, one of America's influential groups devoted to U.S. foreign policy, from About Guide to U.S. Foreign Policy Keith Porter.

Profile: The Brookings Institution
A profile of the Brookings Institution, one of America's influential groups devoted to U.S. foreign policy, from About Guide to U.S. Foreign Policy Keith Porter.

Profile: The Council on Foreign Relations
A profile of the Council on Foreign Relations, America's most influential group devoted to U.S. foreign policy, from About Guide to U.S. Foreign Policy Keith Porter.

Profile: American Enterprise Institute
A profile of the American Enterprise Institute, an influential American group working on conservative approaches to a variety of issues including U.S. foreign policy, from About Guide to U.S. Foreign Policy Keith Porter.

Profile: The Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
A profile of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, one of America's influential groups devoted to U.S. foreign policy, from About Guide to U.S. Foreign Policy Keith Porter.

World Hot Spots
America's interests - and reach - are global. Therefore, a crisis anywhere on the planet has a good chance of being on the agenda at the White House, State Department, and Pentagon as well. Here are the top hot spots consuming U.S. foreign policy efforts today.

Developing an Integrated Foreign Policy
Foreign policy uses "hard power" and "soft power," but what is "smart power"? Keith Porter--your About Guide to U.S. Foreign Policy--explains.

Best Foreign Policy Blogs
The blogosphere is full of high quality writing by leading experts on U.S. foreign policy. Keith Porter - your About Guide to U.S. Foreign Policy - recommends the best foreign policy blogs.

U.S., Russia Update Cold War NRRC Agreement

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