This is Kenneth Janda, primary author of Chapter 20, "Global Policy," the last chapter in The Challenge of Democracy. In earlier editions of our text, we called this chapter "Foreign and Defense Policy." We retitled it to reflect the growing interdependence among nations in the 21st century.
Nevertheless, foreign policy lies at the core of the chapter. It begins by reporting that the U.S. Constitution gave to Congress more powers for making foreign policy than to the president. Today, however, the president--not Congress--is responsible for shaping our foreign policy. Read to see how that happened.
Also learn something about the main executive organizations that shape the administration's foreign policy. What are the roles of the Departments of State and Defense and the major agencies in the intelligence community?
From the historical review of U.S. foreign policy, be sure you know the meaning of these key terms: isolationism, containment, nation building, the Nixon doctrine, and preemptive action. Be able to relate them to eras in our foreign policy.
The chapter discusses several issue areas in global policy that concern all nations. Nations sometimes selectively argue for "free trade" and sometimes for "fair trade." Learn the difference between these terms. Most nations have endorsed the treaty for an International Criminal Court and the Kyoto treaty on global warming. The U.S. didn't enter into these treaties. Why not?
The chapter concludes by reviewing surveys of American political leaders' and ordinary citizens' attitudes toward foreign affairs. How do leaders differ from citizens? Why do interest groups appear to have more influence on U.S. foreign policy than a majority of its citizens?
When you finish this chapter (and the book) we hope that you feel that you have learned a lot about American government. Thanks for using our text.