Introduction: Asia and American Foreign Policy



The end of the cold war has meant a drastic transformation of the international system, which policy makers as well as scholars and other analysts are still in the process of trying to define and understand. The long-term, intense conflict between the United States and the Soviet Union organized international relations in a fundamental way between the late 1940s and the late 1980s. The fact that this conflict was ideological, political and economic as well as diplomatic and military in nature had an especially broad and deep impact on the international system. Communist ideology defined nothing less than a clear philosophical alternative to Western liberal notions of economic production and trade and democratic political representation. Not for the only time in the twentieth century, a revolutionary mass movement raised the stakes of international relations beyond the level of traditional diplomatic interchange and military conflict. Nuclear weapons, and the enormous arsenals of the two superpowers, added a further dimension, capable of the utter destruction of the industrialized world and much else besides.


Foreign Policy World Order European Economic Community Trade Negotiation North Atlantic Treaty Organization 
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© Palgrave Macmillan, a division of Macmillan Publishers Limited 1997

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