What should US foreign involvement look like?

America’s economy isn’t doing so hot right now. But once upon a time, it was thriving beyond what most people thought was possible. The nation experienced significant economic peaks in the 1920s and 1960s. These two eras had one vital detail in common: Both were prefaced by a highly active foreign policy.

The process is relatively simple. A dynamic foreign policy yields global influence, which yields global power, which yields a more dominant economic and political system.

Nick Cimarusti | Daily Trojan


It worked after the United States helped put an end to World War I, and it worked again after the struggle against communism kept America an active player on the world stage.

Graduating into a healthy economy is extremely important to students. We should urge our next presidential elect to maintain American involvement in foreign affairs.

The policy needn’t be excessive. The war in Iraq is evidence enough that too much intervention can lead to catastrophe. But well-reasoned foreign involvement — where the cause is just, the stakes are understood and the objectives are clear — offers the nation a chance to improve its international prospects.

The issue goes beyond the economy. We are a generation that has grown up with the American dream of free speech and free enterprise fully realized. Regardless of difficulties arising in its application, we appreciate democracy and basic free-market principles. It is what we know, what we love and what much of the world stands to benefit from.

The moment the United States drops out of the international community is the moment that system instantly loses its global defender.

Recently, the Arab Spring arrived in Syria, where protestors rallying for recognition of their basic rights have faced a brutal government crackdown. Though the United States has condemned the actions of the Syrian government, it has not yet actively intervened.

In the interest of preserving global influence and of promoting American political values, the United States should do more than condemn the crackdown. If intervention is executed correctly, it could bring us the rare benefit of a democratic ally in the Middle East.

The human rights aspect of the Syrian problem should not go ignored either. In an era that puts a strong emphasis on being global citizens — illustrated by our own university’s burgeoning international focus — our duty to protect all people from atrocities worldwide is of great importance.

As college students, we are at the epicenter of global activism and cultural exchange. We should feel even more motivated to support America’s continued foreign involvement. We owe it to the world, to ourselves, to our economy and to our democratic influence.


Francesca Bessey is a freshman majoring in narrative studies. Point/Counterpoint runs Fridays. 

4 replies
  1. Warmonger Bush
    Warmonger Bush says:

    War is not free. War destroys the lives of those that participate in it. Even those that stay home experience aftereffects that harm society for DECADES. Now is a good time to let civil wars in foreign nations happen without getting involved. Just because the USA spends the most on military hardware, doesn’t mean that it should fly around the globe flexing its military might.

    The USA is borrowing money from around the world to give it to different groups of citizens and foreigners. The USA is like a student that gets a credit card to buy meals for friends and potential friends. Eventually all that is left are lines of people wanting more and a big pile of debt.

    • Major General
      Major General says:

      War is not free; it is an investment. Take for example, the millions of dollars we spent on using Tomahawk missiles against Libya in aid of the rebels. That is going to now pay off with vital oil contracts for some of the most pure crude oil in the world now controlled by the rebels. Do not use the debt as cover for being against war; in reality you are a sissy pacifist and that’s all there is to it.

  2. zman
    zman says:

    it’s scary how clueless this author is.. The Wall Street owned media propaganda is very powerfull..

    When CNN, CBS, FOX News, and MSNBC tell you that the US is intervening in Libya for “humanatarain” reasons, they actually believe it.. ahahah

    When they tell Assad in Syria is “slaughtering” civilians they believe it..

    The reality is quite the opposite it but no need to ge in there.. Adolf Hitler in is hell somewhere looking up on the US propaganda mechanism and dying of jealousy.

    Obama is selling wars with much clever propaganda than George Bush even though the policies are actually the same.

  3. William Buttrey
    William Buttrey says:

    This is a thoughtful and well written piece. One of the other things that should be promoted is consistency and fairness. It is not right that the sabers are rattled in regards to Iran and its nuclear program (a signer of the NPT), but no mention is made of Israel’s nuclear weapons. In the State of the Union message, President Obama mentions the pursuit of freedom for peoples across the globe, but no mention of Palestinians is made.

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