As a super power nation, the United States of America has a duty to protect its citizens both at home and away. Further, the country has taken on the responsibility of maintaining peace around the world since WWI because of its advanced technology and military supremacy. As a result, it has been at the forefront of fighting against terrorism in Somalia and the Middle East. The US is recognized for having the largest army globally, and beyond the homeland protection duty, the army is also involved in the world’s welfare and maintenance of security. The United States role in world policing through its pro-active measures such as the use of trade sanctions, embargos, and controlling the possession of weapons of mass destruction as well as reactive measures such as peace-keeping missions and funding of international peacekeepers have made the world safer than if it had not intervened. This paper broadly highlights the role of US in security in specific areas outside its territorial boundaries.
Current International Events Involving the US military
Peacekeeping in the Middle East. The peacekeeping mission in the Middle East is founded on the US foreign policy that ensures safety and welfare of all people above everything else. According to the United Nations, peacekeeping aims at helping countries that are affected by war to establish sustainable peace by creating necessary conditions. Being a permanent member of the United Nations, the US facilitates peacekeeping by allocating necessary resources for these missions, training of local military police, and issuing them with the necessary equipment to mitigate the loss of life. In the Middle East, the US carries out its activities through the United Nation Truce Supervision Organization (UNTSO): an institution created to observe ceasefires, oversee peace agreements, and ensure that isolated incidents are not escalated. Many UNTSO operations are based in Syria.
Stopping terrorist activities in Somalia. The US has not been involved directly in Somalia since 1996 when close to 18 officers lost their lives in combat. Instead, it operates through local institutions like the African Union by providing them with resources like money, airlift equipment, and training. The US supports the operations of the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISON), which is approved by the UN but was created by the African Union Peace and Security Council in 2007. By working with other countries like Kenya, Uganda, and Burundi, who have contributed their soldiers to fight terrorism in Somalia, the US achieves its objective of working outside the UN structures. AMISON is directly fighting the Al-Shabaab, a terrorist group allied with Al Qaeda but situated in Somalia.
Aspects of US History Leading to its Rise as a World’s Superpower
Economic Power. The emergence of a strong economy around 1865, after the end of the American Civil War, contributed to the emergence of the US as the world’s superpower. The strong economy meant that the US could allocate more resources in the army to support military activities. Effectively, huge budgets were allocated for producing lethal weapons as well as taking care of large numbers of military personnel (Gilmore and Thomas 81).
The Success of Capitalism. The spread of capitalism led to the creation of wealth in the US as well as the allied countries in Europe and Asia that supported this idea. The success of capitalism did not only check adoption of communism across the globe but also made people who were diligent to accumulate resources, which lead to competition.
The Cold War. The cold war is another aspect of history that led to the US becoming a world superpower. It took place in the late 20th century when there were ideological, political, and military conflicts between the Eastern and Western Europe block. Notably, it was marked by the accumulation of nuclear weapons (Duiker 112). The Cold War caused the leaders in the US to be more determined to protect its ideologies such as free trade (capitalism), democracy, and human rights.
International Incidents Since WW II
The Somali Civil War. This war took place in the 1990s after the collapse of Mohamed Siad Barre’s government. The US forces commanded by President George H.W. Bush were deployed in Somalia to deliver food to victims of the war. However, the humanitarian mission changed to the restoration of Somali government; a process that entailed taking over the nation to protect Somali citizens from terrorist groups.
Grenada Post Election. This conflict took place in 1983 between the Stalinist group on one hand and the leftist revolution. The US intervened in the conflict, and within a few weeks, an interim government was created. In addition, elections were held in 1984. Grenada has remained democratic to date (Terrence 8).
Dominican Civil War. The conflict took place in 1965 after the assassination of President Juan Bosch. Due to the vacancy created by his untimely death, there was a power struggle among rival groups. Importantly, the US government participated in the conflict by ensuring that a democratically elected government was put in place.
The Lebanon Intervention. The 1958 Lebanon conflict revolved around the use of the Suez Canal between Muslims and Christians. As a result, there was tension and conflict with both sides fighting for the use of this resource. The US military intervened and united the feuding groups.
Driving Forces That Fueled International Policy
Several factors in the international arena have fueled the US international policy such as removing an environment where terrorists can practice their acts, ensuring there are peaceful elections, and stopping violence. For example, the civil war in Somalia was found to be creating an environment for terrorist practices. Therefore, the US wanted to restore the Somali government and accordingly world peace. The motivation for the US participation in the Dominican Civil War was to create peaceful elections and election policies as well as to ensure that all people participated in the elections. Finally, the Grenada involvement aimed at stopping violence and establishing peace and security. In fact, the US troops stopped the bloodshed that was taking place in the country.
In conclusion, the US troops have played a major role in ensuring world peace and security through peacekeeping missions in other nations and engaging in conflict resolution. The involvement of the United States army in peacekeeping missions started back in the WWII period and its role has increased to protecting American citizens and their allies across the world. As a result, their skills have improved and their technologies have advanced to give them superior power ability to function in international policing.
Duiker, William. Contemporary World History. Barnes & Noble, 2009. Print.
Gilmore, Glenda, and Thomas Sugrue, These United States, A Nation in the Making: 1945 to the
Present. Norton & Company, 2016. Print.