Assignment 3: America as a Superpower
Due Week 9 and worth 120 points

The previous assignments focused on domestic matters in U.S. history.  This last assignment explores America’s international role in recent  decades. By the mid-20th century, the United States had become the  dominant force in international relations. Some have argued that the  United States’ military functions as the world’s “police.” This  assignment covers the manner in which this shift occurred and the  consequences the United States faces as a result of its status as  “policeman of the world.” One can identify early steps this direction  well before World War II, but in this paper focus on the period from the  1940s to the present. Examine the statement below and drawing from  provided sources, present a paper with specific examples and arguments  to demonstrate the validity of your position.

Statement—in which you can take a pro or con position:

  • The American international “policing” role developed because of the  Cold War, but now terrorists or  any power having or trying to get  weapons of mass destruction (WMD) are the potential targets of such a  role. By examples from different decades since 1950, it is clear that  the policing strategy was once essential but should be discarded as  ineffective and counterproductive.  (Or you can argue the opposite—that  the policing strategy is more necessary than ever; or you can argue for a  more moderate position.)  Use specific examples—two from the Cold War  years and two from the past two decades.   

After giving general consideration to your readings and your  research, select one of the positions above as your position—your  thesis. (Sometimes after doing more thorough research, you might choose  the reverse position. This happens with critical thinking and inquiry.  Your final paper might end up taking a different position than you  originally envisioned.) Organize your paper as follows, handling these  issues:  

  • The position you choose —or something close to it—will be the thesis statement in your opening paragraph.
  • To support your position, use four (4) specific examples from  different decades between 1950 and the present. However, two (2)  examples must be from the Cold War years (before 1991) and the other two  (2) examples must be from the past twenty (20) years.
  • Explain why the opposing view is weak in comparison to yours.
  • Consider your life today: In what way does the history you have  shown shape or impact issues in your workplace or desired profession?  (This might be unclear at first since it is foreign policy. But,  super-power status does inevitably provide advantages in a global  economy.) 

Length: The paper should be 500-to-750 words in length. 

Research and References: You must use a MINIMUM of four  quality academic sources; the Schultz textbook must be one of them. Two  of them must come from the online library—either those library sources  listed or others. Your other source should be drawn from the list  provided below. This is guided research, not open-ended Googling. 

Source list for Assignment 3: Some sources are  “primary” sources from the time period being studied. Some sources below  can be accessed via direct link or through the primary sources links on  Blackboard. Each week has a different list of primary sources. For  others, they are accessible through the permalink to the source in our  online library: Sources below having libdatab.strayer.edu as part of the URL have a permalink to that source in our university’s online library. 

SWS Form for the textbook: Kevin M. Schultz. 2018. HIST: Volume 2: U.S. History since 1865.  5th ed.

G. H. W. Bush. March 6, 1991. Address before a Joint Session of the Congress on the Cessation of the Persian Gulf Conflict. http://college.cengage.com/history/wadsworth_9781133309888/unprotected/ps/bushnwo.html 

J. F. Dulles. Jan. 2, 1954. Secretary Dulles’ Strategy of Massive Retaliation. http://college.cengage.com/history/wadsworth_9781133309888/unprotected/ps/dulles.html 

M. Klare. July 15, 2002. Endless Military Superiority. http://libdatab.strayer.edu/login?url=https://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=a9h&AN=6926412&site=eds-live&scope=site 

C. Paul. 2008. Marines on the Beach: The Politics of U.S. Military Intervention Decision Making. eBook. http://libdatab.strayer.edu/login?url=https://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=nlebk&AN=275009&site=eds-live&scope=site 

C. Powell. Feb. 6, 2003. Transcript of Powell’s UN Presentation. http://www.cnn.com/2003/US/02/05/sprj.irq.powell.transcript/ 

R. Reagan. March, 1983. Remarks at the Annual Convention of the National Association of Evangelicals. http://college.cengage.com/history/wadsworth_9781133309888/unprotected/ps/evilemp.html 

Kevin M. Schultz. 2018. HIST: Volume 2: U.S. History since 1865.  5th ed. 

S. M. Tarzi. Sept. 2014. The Folly of a Grand Strategy of Coercive  Global Primacy: A Fresh Perspective on the Post-9/11 Bush Doctrine.  http://libdatab.strayer.edu/login?url=https://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=a9h&AN=98323177&site=eds-live&scope=site 

Your assignment must follow these formatting requirements:

  • This course requires use of new Strayer Writing Standards (SWS).  The format is different than other Strayer University courses. Please  take a moment to review the SWS documentation for details.
  • Be typed, double spaced between lines, using Times New Roman font  (size 12), with one-inch margins on all sides; citations and references  must follow SWS format. Check with your professor for any additional  instructions.
  • Include a cover page containing the title of the assignment, the  student’s name, the professor’s name, the course title, and the date.  The cover page and the Sources page are not included in the required  assignment page length.

The specific course learning outcomes associated with this assignment are:

  • Analyze the rise of the United States to a world “superpower” and  how that status has shaped its internal developments in recent decades.
  • Examine how changes in social and economic conditions and  technology can cause corresponding changes in the attitudes of the  people and policies of the government
  • Summarize and discuss the ways that formal policies of government  have influenced the direction of historical and social development in  the United States.
  • Recognize the major turning points in American history since the Civil War.
  • Use technology and information resources to research issues in contemporary U.S. history.
  • Write clearly and concisely about contemporary U.S. history using proper writing mechanics.

Click here to view the grading rubric.