The USA has long played the role of the world policeman successfully and contributed to the restoration of peace in many regions. Recent US involvement in the conflict in Iraq and assistance provided to Turkey to protect its borders from Syrian extremists can be seen as bright examples of the US policing strategies as the incidents show different ways the USA can affect the course of certain events in the international arena using its financial resources as well as its political influence.
The USA gained the status of a superpower after the Civil War that shaped the nation. The USA has acquired a significant economic and political influence in the world due to effective domestic and foreign policies. One of the latest examples of the US effective involvement in the restoration of peace in a region is American assistance provided to Iraq. Daragahi (2014) states that the Iraqi people welcome US involvement as the country can help Iraqi people to win the battle against Islamic extremists who have torn the country into pieces.
Another illustration of efficient policies that contribute to peace-making is the US assistance to Turkey that is trying to protect its borders and its citizens from the potential threat coming from Syria (“US troops mass on Turkey’s Syrian border,” 2012). The US troops will help Turkish military forces to protect the country’s borders, and the USA is also making a lot of effort to find diplomatic ways to restore peace in the region.
Aspects of the US history that led to the rise of the USA as the world policeman
It is possible to identify at least three significant aspects of US history that contributed greatly to the rise of the country as a leading state and the world policeman. Since 1865, the USA has transformed from a colony into a powerful country with a strong economy. Unprecedented economic growth (that was especially intensive after the Civil War and the World Wars) enabled the USA to assist many countries financially and pursue American national interests (Schultz, 2014).
The economic growth also resulted in the development of expansionist policies American leaders adopted. Domestic growth was often achieved through the availability of resources of other countries (Herring, 2008). Thus, American leaders often tried to interfere in the political agendas of countries (first, states of Latin America and then countries in other regions) to ensure the most beneficial economic ties with these countries.
Finally, during its involvement in many international incidents and conflicts, the USA has gained the status of powerful countries with significant resources that has various tools to achieve certain goals. In other words, the cases when the US diplomacy or military forces were successful have become a warning to world leaders who understand that involvement of the USA can have quite specific outcomes. This contributed to the development of the reputation of the powerful policing country.
Three International Incidents
One of such international incidents is the Korean War (1950-1953). The USA sent its troops, weapons as well as humanitarian aid as a response to the invasion of South Korea by the North Korean army (Herring, 2008). This involvement had a great impact on the outcomes of the conflict as South Koreans managed to protect themselves from the aggression and maintain their sovereignty.
Another conflict took place in 1990-1991, and it involved such countries as Kuwait and Iraq. In 1990, Iraqi troops invaded a certain territory of Kuwait, which resulted in severe sanctions against Iraq as well as military involvement of the USA (Dogan, 2012). The USA provided weapons and humanitarian and financial aid to Kuwait. This involvement enabled the country to protect its sovereignty as well.
One more incident to be considered also took place in the 1990s. The Bosnian War (1992-1995) was mainly caused by religious and ethnic tension, as people of the former Yugoslavia could not resolve territorial conflicts (Dogan, 2012). The region was devastated by the War, and only involvement of the USA (as well as other influential countries and international organizations such as NATO) led to the restoration of peace in the area (Moran, 2014).
Three Driving Forces
Keeping in mind the conflicts mentioned above, it is possible to identify at least three driving forces that have a paramount impact on international policy decisions. Thus, all three conflicts involved actual wars. The War can be seen as one of the drivers that force other countries to seek ways to interfere in the affairs of certain states and restore peace in the region.
It is also important to note that various treaties help to stop wars and sometimes result in a war. The Dayton Accords can be regarded as treaties that ended the War and helped certain groups of people to compromise. However, the Graz agreements led to the War between Bosnia and Croatia as the treaties did not address major issues and did not satisfy the parties.
Finally, elections also play an important role as they fuel many international policy decisions. Thus, elections in countries often define the domestic as well as the international policy of states (Herring, 2008). In the three conflicts mentioned above, elections were held, and this led to the increase in tension between different groups or to quite aggressive foreign policy (in the case of Iraq).
Daragahi, B. (2014). Iraq gives a cautious welcome to US military intervention. Financial Times. Web.
Dogan, N. (2012). The pragmatic liberal approach to world order: The scholarship of Inis L. Claude, Jr. Lanham, MD: University Press of America.
Herring, G.C. (2008). From colony to superpower: US foreign relations since 1776. New York, NY: Oxford University Press.
Moran, A.D. (2014). Contemporary US foreign policy. In R.J. McKeever & P. Davies (Eds.), Politics USA (pp. 359-379). New York, NY: Routledge.
Schultz, K.M. (2014). HIST: US history since 1865. Chicago, IL: Cengage Learning.
US troops mass on Turkey’s Syrian border. (2012). Military.com. Web.