The World America Made—And Its Future
Since the late 1940s, the United States has successfully pursued policies of open trade and military cooperation in western Europe and northeast Asia. Beginning with the Marshall Plan, American policies have consistently promoted freer trade, commercial specialization and competition, and political collaboration among market economies. NATO formed parallel military ties between the US and Europe.
These policies have forged deep links betweem the US and its major allies. In the process, they have steadily raised both incomes and security at home and abroad.
are extraordinary achievements. But now these basic US policies are hotly
contested, as violent protests against the World Trade Organization in
Seattle make clear. Many Americans now chafe at the costs and burdens
of global engagement, especially since the Soviet Union no longer threatens.
To understand these new challenges, we need to understand how they developed. Why did the United States shape a distinctive global order after World War II? How successful was it?
Now that the Cold War is receding into memory, what new challenges does the US face in maintaining a safe, prosperous, and stable world?