Essay Example on The United States Foreign Policy in Iraq, Iran, and Cuba

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Harvey Mudd College
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American exceptionalism refers to the special characteristics of the United States as a free country based on personal liberty and democracy. The United States foreign policy has played a crucial role in maintaining the political and economic stability of Iran, Iraq, and Cuba since 1890. American activities in the Middle East are based on its interests in the value of the oil resources found in the region. On the other hand, America had played isolation politics in Cuba until 2008 when the Obama government opened up the diplomatic ties between the two nations. The paper explores how the American foreign polices shaped to protects its economic and political interests.

American exceptionalism is based on the ideology that the United States is a powerful and prosperous nation because of its geographic advantage, historical origin, political and economic evolution. The United States benefits from its unique ethnic, racial, and religious diversity. Consequently, Americas foreign policies are shaped by its traditions on internationalism and isolation (Yordan, 2006).Although the Isolation Policy emphasizes the need for the US to avoid international politics and focus on its domestic affairs, internationalism advocates for its role on the global platform to protects America's interests. As a result, the United States foreign policies in the Middle East seeks to secure freedom in commerce and access to oils (Yordan, 2006).The 1898 strategies by William McKinley President Bushs post 9/11 regulations are similar as they advocated for the expansion of American Interests.

The United States highly depends on the oil from Iraq and Iran. Therefore, it is sensitive to price fluctuations and seeks to retain the cost to the minimal. Oil from the Middle East is sought after because of its low cost. Similarly, more and more oil reserves are being discovered, and the United States aims to have control over them. The production of oil is cheaper in Iraq and Iran, rendering the prices relatively low while giving the United States power and influence over the world oil markets. American trade interests in Iraq and Iran have increased over the years due to the surplus production of oil and petroleum products (Yordan, 2006). Consequently, President Bush heightened the US interests in the Persian Gulf by engaging in the war against terrorism, which threatened the regional peace and stability.

The Iraqi invasion by the United States under the UN Security Council resolution 678 led to the liberation of Kuwait and destruction of the nuclear weapon research center. However, the idea of Saddam Hussein controlling the around 20% of the global oil resources could have a been a threat to the American economic interests (Yordan, 2006). The American foreign policies assert on the importance of restricting the Iran and Iraq military ambitions and making allies with Israel, Saudi Arabia, and Egypt to reserve the power balance. Iran has played a key role in sponsoring terrorism and challenging the United States interests, therefore causing instability and conflicts among friendly governments. On the contrast, critics argue that The US policies in the Middle East do not benefit the regions economic and political interests.

Cuba and the United States had had hostile relations until 2014 when the Obama government made democracy promotion against isolating the Island diplomatically and economically. When Cuba hiked the import tax on American imports, the US responded by reducing the Cuban sugar imports (Badella, 2015). As a result, the two nations severed all ties and the American plans to overthrow Castro failed in 1961 as Cuba was aided by the Soviet Union. After 2008, The United States commenced its plans to pursue direct diplomacy.

In conclusion, the United States foreign policies seek to protect its economic and political interests. The Iraqi invasion sought to ensure peace and stability in the area that will enhance the Americas control over oil reserves. Similarly, America isolated Cuba for many years until 2008 when the two nations restored their ties.



Badella, A. (2015). Obama and US democracy promotion in Cuba: New strategies, old goals? The Caribbean Journal of International Relations &Diplomacy, 3(2), pp. 7-35.

Yordan, C. (2006). The imperial turn: analyzing post-9/1American foreign policy through the prism of 1898. Revista de Historia Actual, 4(4), pp. 27-44.

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