American foreign policy : alliance politics in a century of war, 1914-2014

Peterson, James W. (James Walter), 1945-

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  • Creator James W. Peterson
  • Format Books
  • Publication New York : Bloomsbury Academic, 2014.
  • Physical Details
    • viii, 202 pages ; 24 cm
  • ISBNs 9781623561802, 1623561809, 9781623560737, 162356073X, 9781623564889, 1623564883, 9781623564094, 1623564093
  • OCLC ocn857981518


  • "The text aims to uncover the roots of the United States' near perpetual involvement in war since the beginning of WWI in 1914. Using alliance politics as the main framework of analysis, it offers a new interpretation that contrasts with the traditional views that war is an interruption of the American foreign policy emphasis on diplomacy. Instead, it posits that war has been the norm during the past century while peaceful interludes were but a time of respite and preparation for the next conflict. After a thorough discussion of the concepts of alliance building and the containment doctrine, the work then addresses such themes as the alliance networks used to confront German and Japanese powers during the early 20th century wars, the role of alliances in containing the Soviet Union during the Cold War, the creation of alliances to restrict and defeat rogue state powers, and whether they were useful when dealing with the challenges posed by terrorism in the post-9/11 world. Each chapter features case studies, a summary, references, and web links. In addition, the book utilizes primary sources, such as U.S. Department of Defense and State documents and presidential statements. An exhaustive study of containment and alliance, this text will be an essential resource for anyone studying U.S. foreign policy, international relations, and national security"--


  • Includes bibliographical references (p. 185-192) and index.


  • Introduction: 1914: An Abrupt End to a Century and a Quarter of Isolationism -- Part One: Alliance Networks and the Defeat of German and Japanese Power: Early Twentieth Century Hot Wars, 1914-1945: 1. World War I, Temporary Alliance Networks, and American Leadership, 1914-1918; 2. World War II, Permanent Alliances, and American Internationalism, 1931-1945 -- Part Two: Role of Alliances in Containing the Power of the Soviet Union: Late Twentieth Century Cold War, 1945-1991: 3. War of Nerves with the Soviet Union: A Broad but Shaky Containment Alliance, 1945-1991; 4. Korean War: A Small Pacific-Based Containment Alliance and Stalemate, 1950-1953; 5. War in Southeast Asia: Absence of Allies, Non-Containment, and Defeat, 1964-1973 -- Part Three: Creation of Alliances to Restrict and Defeat Rogue State Power: Immediate Post-Cold War Period: 6. American-Led, United Nations Based Alliance to Check Saddam and Iraq, 1990-1991; 7. American-Led, NATO-Based Alliance to Check Milocevic and Serbia, 1992-1999 -- Part Four: Utility and Disutility of Alliances in Dealing with Challenges from Terrorist Power, 2001-2014: 8. America, NATO, and the War in Afghanistan, 2001-2014; 9. America, Coalition of the Willing, and the War in Iraq, 2003-2011; 10. Arab Spring, Discussions within Alliances, and the Potential for War, 2011-2014 -- Conclusion: 2014: Reflections on a Century of War and an Abrupt Transition to New Conflicts -- "Mazar"
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