American Foreign Policy: A Realist Approach

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As a global superpower, the United States aims to assist nations in need and promote positive values worldwide. However, American foreign policy should prioritize a realist perspective, placing American interests first. Historical events such as the Battle of Mogadishu, the Camp David Accords, and the airstrikes in Syria exemplify the effectiveness of realism in shaping our foreign policy and underscore the importance of maintaining this approach.

The Camp David Accords: A Diplomatic Triumph

During President Jimmy Carter's administration, the Camp David Accords involved two weeks of negotiations between Israel and Egypt in the United States. Egyptian President Anwar Sadat and Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin signed the "Framework for Peace in the Middle East." Tragically, Sadat's assassination shortly after the negotiations disrupted the agreement, despite it being considered the closest the world has come to achieving peace between Israel and its neighbors. This event, relevant to the Middle East and terrorism, showcases the United States' diplomatic influence in bringing two previously hostile nations together for peace talks.

The Battle of Mogadishu: A Case for Realism

The Battle of Mogadishu in 1993 resulted in the tragic loss of 18 American soldiers and numerous injuries, highlighting the limitations of idealism. During this period, Somalia was plagued by warlords vying for control, causing immense suffering for civilians. The United States responded by sending humanitarian aid, but the warlords seized the supplies to fuel their conflicts. In an attempt to retrieve the aid and apprehend the warlord, American helicopters were shot down by Somali forces, leading to casualties and a challenging extraction mission. This event, relevant to human rights, hard power, and realism, demonstrates the potential consequences of idealistic interventions. The disastrous outcome influenced the United States' decision to adopt a realist approach and avoid direct involvement in the Rwandan genocide.

Syria Airstrikes: Countering Chemical Weapons with Hard Power

In April 2018, the United States, in collaboration with Great Britain and France, launched over 100 missiles into Syria to halt President Bashar al-Assad's use of chemical weapons against Syrian citizens. The successful strikes targeted facilities involved in the production and storage of chemical weapons, effectively (albeit temporarily) curbing their use. This action, relevant to the Middle East, terrorism, power, and human rights, exemplifies the use of hard power, a realist strategy, to address a significant threat.

Conclusion: Realism as a Guiding Principle

In conclusion, these examples demonstrate the efficacy of realism in American foreign policy. By prioritizing national interests and employing strategic interventions, the United States can effectively navigate the complexities of the international arena while safeguarding its security and promoting global stability.

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