Assignment 3: America as a Superpower
For History 105: Dr. Stansbury’s classes
Due Week 9 and worth 120 points. The formal deadline is on Monday morning at 9am Eastern Time; this is the next day after Week 9 ends. Watch announcements, emails, and postings for exact dates and any holiday notes that sometimes arise.
[NOTE ON ECREE: As you know from our first two papers, the university is adopting a tool called ecree for helping and doing writing assignments in many classes. In our History 105 class, we will be using the ecree program only for EXTRA CREDIT as a tool for doing work on your rough draft of the paper. We hope this approach encourages more rough drafting and revision work by students as well as makes students familiar with this useful new tool. For Assignment 3, in the Week 9 unit, you will see the link “EXTRA CREDIT: ROUGH DRAFT….”—that is where you can get up to 5 points of extra credit. Instructions will be posted there in the early days of the summer course. If you try this option, you will be able to use the file developed in ecree as a rough draft; you will then download that draft and edit it further. Then, once your paper is fully polished and finished as you see fit, you will then submit it at the next link in the Week 9 unit, which says “SUBMIT ASSIGNMENT 3: AMERICA AS A SUPERPOWER”. ]
The previous assignments focused on domestic matters in U.S. history. This last assignment explores America’s international role in recent decades.
BACKGROUND FOR THE PAPER: This is a 5-paragraph paper based on research in designated sources. It is a position paper in which you support a thesis statement by reason and historical examples. By the mid-20th century, the United States had become the dominant force in international relations. Some have argued that the United States’ military functions as the world’s “police.” This assignment covers the manner in which this shift occurred and the consequences the United States faces as a result of its status as “policeman of the world.” One can identify early steps this direction well before World War II, but in this paper focus on the period from 1950 to the present. The American international “policing” role developed because of the Cold War, but now terrorists or any power having or trying to get weapons of mass destruction (WMD) are the potential targets of such a role. Your paper will use specific examples—two from the Cold War years (roughly 1950-1990) and two from the past three decades (1991-2019). Examine the two statements below and drawing from provided sources and the university’s online library, present a paper with specific examples and arguments to demonstrate the validity of your position. [Don’t use this background paragraph in your paper.]
NOTE: The word “policing” here has nothing to do with traditional law enforcement agencies. It is more about trying to manage parts of the globe—usually by use of military force or the threat of it. The aim of this management may be to maintain stability, remove threats of “rogue” forces or terrorists or weapons, prevent the expansion of autocratic rule, protect a fledgling democracy, etc.
Choose one of these thesis statements as your position (make it the last sentence of your introductory paragraph):
THESIS STATEMENT 1: By examples from different decades since 1950, it is clear that the international policing role and strategy of the United States was once essential, but should now be discarded as ineffective and counterproductive.
THESIS STATEMENT 2: By examples from different decades since 1950, it is clear that the international policing role and strategy of the United States during the Cold War has become even more necessary in this period of terrorism and instability.
- Whichever thesis statement you choose, plan to make that thesis statement the last sentence in your introductory paragraph. The general subject is America’s international “policing” role as a superpower for the last 70-plus years. You may modify the wording slightly to fit more precisely the position you wish to take. This is NOT a simple statement of a topic; it is a statement of a position you are taking about that topic. p.s.—Valid arguments and “A” papers can be made with either thesis. So, you choose the one you think is the stronger position.
In your paper, use specific examples—two from the Cold War years (roughly 1950-1990) and two from post Cold War years (the past three decades, roughly 1991-2019). After giving general consideration to your readings and your research, select one of the positions above as your position—your thesis. (Sometimes after doing more thorough research, you might choose the reverse position. This happens with critical thinking and inquiry. Your final paper might end up taking a different position than you originally envisioned.) Organize your paper as follows, handling these issues with this FOUR-PART organization (see Template also):
- Part One—one paragraph. INTRODUCTION AND THESIS STATEMENT. The position you choose will be the thesis statement in your opening paragraph; make it the last sentence of the paragraph.
- Part Two—two paragraphs normally. FOUR EXAMPLES. To support your thesis, use four specific examples, two from the Cold War years (1950-1990) and two from the post-Cold War period (1991-2019). The examples should be specific and clearly support your thesis. In these paragraphs one generally must have in-text citations to support your specific examples and to show where the information was found. Make the examples SPECIFIC. The FORMAT SAMPLE paper can also help on this part.
- Part Three—one paragraph normally. DEALING WITH THE OPPOSING VIEW. The opposing view is the thesis statement you did NOT choose. Identify that opposing view and explain why the opposing view is weak in comparison to yours. No new research needed; just one paragraph of critical thinking suggesting why your thesis/position is stronger than a different view. Approach it this way: You adopted a thesis statement. The opposing view is the thesis statement you did NOT adopt. You might start this paragraph by saying “Some may disagree with my thesis and argue that ——- .” THEN—you spend 3 to 5 sentences giving a reasoned argument why your thesis is stronger than the opposing view.
- Part Four—one paragraph: LEGACY TODAY AND CONCLUSION: Consider your life today: In what way does the history you have shown shape or impact issues in your workplace or desired profession? This might be unclear at first since it is foreign policy. (But, super-power status does inevitably provide advantages in a global economy.) This might be easy if you work in cyber security, criminal justice, IT, etc. You can consider the legal impact of terrorism on the justice system, privacy issues, etc. Even a business must now plan accordingly. Every profession now must have security safeguards, have emergency incident preparations, plan what to do with data, etc. A few comments on these things for your profession—and some comments on how this impacts our lives in general. The FORMAT SAMPLE PAPER also has good suggestions for this part.
After the fourth part concluding the paper, be sure you have the numbered list of sources at the end. And be sure each source listed is also used and cited clearly in the body of the paper. The FORMAT SAMPLE paper illustrates this.
Length: The paper should be 500-to-750 words in length. 500 is a minimum. 750 is a guideline as a maximum. This word-count does not include any title page or sources list.
Research and References: You must use a MINIMUM of four quality academic sources; the Schultz textbook must be one of them. The other three may be from the list below or from other quality sources you find in the university’s online library. (Sticking with the list is a safe strategy; using other quality sources from the university’s online library is permitted.) This is guided research, not Googling.
Source list for Assignment 3: Some sources are “primary” sources from the time period being studied. Some sources below can be accessed via direct link. For others, they are accessible through the permalink to the source in our online library: Sources below having libdatab.strayer.edu as part of the URL have a permalink to that source in our university’s online library. (The link takes you to the library log-in; you then log in, and then the source appears for you right away). Each source below is shown in SWS form, so if you use it, you may easily copy the entire entry onto your paper’s sources list. (On a paper, never list an item as URL only.)
SWS Form for the textbook:
Kevin M. Schultz. 2018. HIST: Volume 2: U.S. History since 1865. 5th ed.
Choose sources relevant to the topic and position you are taking:
G. H. W. Bush. March 6, 1991. Address before a Joint Session of the Congress on the Cessation of the Persian Gulf Conflict. http://college.cengage.com/history/wadsworth_9781133309888/unprotected/ps/bushnwo.html
S. Chace. Summer, 2015. The Cuban Missile Crisis: Leadership as Disturbance, Informed by History. http://libdatab.strayer.edu/login?url=https://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=bth&AN=110092272&site=eds-live&scope=site
J. F. Dulles. Jan. 2, 1954. Secretary Dulles’ Strategy of Massive Retaliation. http://college.cengage.com/history/wadsworth_9781133309888/unprotected/ps/dulles.html
M. Klare. July 15, 2002. Endless Military Superiority. http://libdatab.strayer.edu/login?url=https://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=a9h&AN=6926412&site=eds-live&scope=site
T. McCrisken. April/May, 2013. Obama’s Drone War. http://libdatab.strayer.edu/login?url=https://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=a9h&AN=86689166&site=eds-live&scope=site
C. Paul. 2008. Marines on the Beach: The Politics of U.S. Military Intervention Decision Making. eBook. http://libdatab.strayer.edu/login?url=https://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=nlebk&AN=275009&site=eds-live&scope=site
C. Powell. Feb. 6, 2003. Transcript of Powell’s UN Presentation. http://www.cnn.com/2003/US/02/05/sprj.irq.powell.transcript/
R. Reagan. March, 1983. Remarks at the Annual Convention of the National Association of Evangelicals. http://college.cengage.com/history/wadsworth_9781133309888/unprotected/ps/evilemp.html
Kevin M. Schultz. 2018. HIST: Volume 2: U.S. History since 1865. 5th ed.
S. M. Tarzi. Sept. 2014. The Folly of a Grand Strategy of Coercive Global Primacy: A Fresh Perspective on the Post-9/11 Bush Doctrine. http://libdatab.strayer.edu/login?url=https://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=a9h&AN=98323177&site=eds-live&scope=site
Your assignment must follow these formatting requirements below:
- This course requires use of new Strayer Writing Standards (SWS). The format is different than other Strayer University courses. Please take a moment to review the SWS documentation for details.
- If you use ECREE as a rough draft tool, the document of the rough draft that you download will be single-spaced. Once you download and save that, use your Word or other program to double space between lines and to make other edits and additions as necessary.
- Your final Assignment 3 paper must be typed, double spaced between lines, and use one of these font styles: Arial, Courier, Times New Roman, or Calibri. Font size must be between 10 and 12. Try to use one-inch margins on all sides, but don’t justify the right margin. In-text citations (in the body of the paper) and a numbered Sources list at the end are required, and they should follow SWS format. Check with your professor for any additional instructions.
- Include a title page containing the title of the assignment, your name, the professor’s name, the course title, and the date you completed the paper. (Please—on the title page—keep it fairly plain, no fancy colors, boxes, etc.)
- The title page and the Sources list are not included in the required assignment length.
The specific course learning outcomes associated with this assignment are:
- Analyze the rise of the United States to a world “superpower” and how that status has shaped its internal developments in recent decades.
- Examine how changes in social and economic conditions and technology can cause corresponding changes in the attitudes of the people and policies of the government
- Summarize and discuss the ways that formal policies of government have influenced the direction of historical and social development in the United States.
- Recognize the major turning points in American history since the Civil War.
- Use technology and information resources to research issues in contemporary U.S. history.
- Write clearly and concisely about contemporary U.S. history using proper writing mechanics.