For such of new country, it sure has some history. The United States has been involved in some rocky “regime changes” throughout its history. In Overthrow, author Stephen Kinzer outlines those in which American influence was the deciding factor. The book is set up into three sections, titled for how the operations were grouped together: The Imperial Era, Covert Action, and Invasions. With each government interference, Kinzer seems to only point out where they went wrong. He simply doesn’t give America enough credit. The first section of Overthrow explains “regime changes” based on imperialistic grounds. Because of this of this reason, the U.S. seemed to have no business overthrowing governments and could not handle them. However, he fails to realize how all of this is largely understandable. The United States of America has never been anything but an empire. The first European settlers came to the land as a colony and even after gaining independence, did nothing but push west while murdering and displacing millions of natives. All that mattered was the country gaining and keeping power. The mindset of the American …show more content…
All of these operations were carried out to protect America as well as other countries from the spread of communism. However, Kinzer doesn’t make it seem that way. Notably, the book fails to discuss the state of the world. The United States and the Soviet Union were the two biggest forces in the world, were not happy with each other, and both had nuclear missiles. There was a lot of pressure to keep the Soviets as far away from American territory as possible. When the government detected a threat, it acted swiftly as to prevent a bloody war that would destroy the world. The governments put in place in Guatemala, Chile, Iran, and South Vietnam were supposed to prevent the spread of the Soviet Union forces and therefore, protect the United States as a
World War II convinced U.S. leaders that the policies in relation to the isolationism and appeasement had been mistakes. In addition, to counter the growing Soviet threat, U.S. leaders sought new ways to keep the United States safe and protect its interests abroad. 4. How would having control over satellite states benefit the Soviet Union if it became involved
Imagine if you lived in a place where you had no freedom, and you were ruled by a man like Joseph Stalin. That is what it would be like in many countries if it weren’t for the United States’ policy of containment. During the Cold War, the Soviet Union wanted to take over other countries and make them have the government system of Communism. The United States didn’t like that, because they thought their governmental system of Democracy was better. As a result, the U.S. adopted a policy of “Containment”.
Part two, Covert Action, of Overthrow: America’s Century of Regime Change from Hawaii to Iraq, by Stephen Kinzer, presents situations in Iran, Chile, South Vietnam, and Guatemala where covert actions were used to abolish governments that the United States claimed had communist influence and intentions. These threats were misguided, but the excuse was used to justify the actions to the public. The true intention of these interventions was to protect American businesses in foreign countries. These interferences are still causing problems for all countries involved.
William Hudson's book American Democracy in Peril, has given several challenges facing democracy in American. Hudson's seventh challenge to America's democracy is the national security state. Starts the chapter off talking about Ronald Reagan's administration and their involvement in Central America. He talks about two important people that were involved in it such as CIA director William Casey who created the contra to prevent the Saninistas from supplying the rebels in El Salvador. Hudson also talks the Oliver North and John Poindexter and the Iran-contra and how they with the support of Casey created a hidden government inside the government that used government resources to achieve their own political agenda (Hudson).
Additionally, there is another example that proves this claim which can be seen through the Vietnam War: This is known as the Gulf of Tonkin. The year 1964 would mark the formal involvement of the U.S. entering the Vietnam War issued by President Lyndon B. Johnson. Having similar ideas like those of the CIA interventions, the U.S. also had intentions of stopping communism from happening in Vietnam. All starting because of two separate attacks on two US Navy destroyers: “U.S.S Maddox and U.S.S Turner Joy” (Gulf of Tonkin Resolution), the Gulf of Tonkin shows how similar to Operation Cyclone and Pearl Harbor it really was to the idea of increasing military supplies based on both threats of communism and threats of attacks, as well as gaining the support of Americans by justifying these threats as “major problems that must be taken care of all in the name of “protecting and serving our nation”.
Hertsgarrd wrote of public pressure that forced America out of Vietnam in the 1970s, as well as, activist the Reagan administration to tone down its support for the white regime in South Africa in the 1980s. Even though many citizens feel the government has the power its seems that the citizens themselves have a real impact on how the government is run. In The Oblivious Empire written by Mark Hertsgarrd, Hertsgarrd writes about how the American foreign policy is not a policy that benefits all. Hertsgarrd uses his essay to express his disappointment and to get across to educated citizens that there is a reason why other countries may not be so fond of us.
Containment was used by the United States so they could prevent communism spreading and was used towards the Guatemalans, Greece, Turkey, and Cuba during the cold war. In which was successful in stopping communism from spreading but did require people being killed or be put in jail which is bad because they got punished for something they believed on. This happened around 1954 because at that time they were fighting the cold war so they had to come with a quick and effective way to stop communism from spreading and containment was the solution. Containment was a big step for the Unites states, they were to intimidate the Soviet Union.
Imagine waking up one day and being forced to drop every custom and tradition you’ve ever known. This is what many countries had to endure when Americans decided it would be okay to imperialize them. Imperialism is the act of extending a country 's power and influence through diplomacy or military force. By the late 1800’s America started imperializing weaker countries. Americans were not justified in barging into weaker countries, and taking over for their own selfish gain.
Before the 20th century the United States was an isolationist nation but around the late 19th century America decided to convert into an imperialist power. They had numerous reasons to shift into being an imperialist nation. America didn’t want to begin imperializing to settle and live in the nations they were taking over, they already had America for that reason, they wanted to adopt these nations for what they had to offer, which was many things. America saw an opportunity to improving their nation and took it. Even if there were many causes for America to imperialize, three of them stood out the most.
Imperialism was a controversial idea that a nation can extend its power outward through means of diplomatic or military force. This often results in a shift of power from one major force currently in control to another. The people of that nation under control conflict may also experience wars, rebellions, or cultural destruction. Looking at some of these events, we see some positives and negatives of imperialistic action taken by the United States, and how it affected the nations imperialized by the United States. For starters, let’s look at Hawaii’s annexation.
As America became a great power, it has continued its legacy of territorial expansionism through neo-imperialist policies. Aside from acquiring land and expanding American territory, the United States has established policies that have allowed direct and often indirect military and political control, economic exploitation, and the introduction of American ideals. The U.S. has justified this form of colonialism by claiming that it is for mutual economic pursuits, the spreading of democracy, and the establishment of stable governments in developing countries. Despite America’s noble causes, American imperialism has caused many repercussions. The United States should cease to be an imperialist power as it is economically damaging to countries under its rule, costly to America, violates the fundamental American principle of self-governance, and exacerbates social and political situations in countries America has tampered with.
The idea of containment was that countries tend to jump over to being communist when they are facing an economical crisis, so to prevent the communist idea from spreading we needed to help countries economies. Congress approved Truman’s suggested amount of $17 billion over the course of four years to help out Great Britain, France, West Germany, Italy, the Netherlands and Belgium. This strategy for preventing communism did work very well, and was very successful in what the U.S. was trying to do. Even though all of that money and planning did what was needed and did prevent this communist
Some of the actions that the U.S. took was the dropping of the atomic bomb on Hiroshima, going into nations that were controlled by the Soviets to fight back, and had the wrong motives. The United States actions during the cold war were not justified, because of the motives that they had behind their actions which were selfish and did not think about everyone else, these actions also caused more aggression. The U.S made the decision to drop a bomb on the city of Hiroshima, Japan. The U.S dropped the bomb because they wanted the fighting to be over in Japan and they wanted them to surrender without having to have any American soldiers step in and lose American lives.
Even Iraq was experiencing human rights abuses, as well as Vietnam when it got involved with communism. Granted, some interventions are more difficult to swallow than others, but the fact that Americans are eager and able to prevent human suffering, regardless of their secondary interests, should not be referred to as unnecessary acts of