The days following the end of the Second World War presented both opportunities and challenges to the United States. Several American presidents applied diverse policies to overcome the issues associated with the Cold War. This paper gives a detailed analysis of the achievements of these four presidents and how their actions transformed America’s future: Dwight David Eisenhower, John F. Kennedy, Jimmy Carter, and Ronald Reagan.
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Domestic and Foreign Policies
Dwight Eisenhower is one of the presidents whose actions changed America during the Cold War period. From an economical perspective, he supported the creation of the Interstate Highway System to improve evacuation processes. This decision made it possible for more regions to realize their economic goals. In terms of foreign policy, he expanded the activities of the CIA. These efforts encouraged more people to pursue their social and economic goals. John F. Kennedy championed various approaches that improved people’s social and economic outcomes (Cohen, 2019). He funded education and presented medical support to the elderly. He also transformed social dynamics by reexamining the issue of racial discrimination.
After assuming office, Jimmy Carter launched ambitious plans to improve economic growth and reduce unemployment. For example, his presidency has created millions of new jobs within three years. He ended the existing energy crisis and promoted a superior monetary policy. Ronald Reagan adopted a new foreign policy by supporting the expansion of the country’s armed forces (Cohen, 2019).
He also introduced new laws aimed at monitoring the Soviet Union. Reagan’s domestic policy focused on the problems of drugs and the HIV/AIDS epidemic and remained opposed to apartheid, thereby transforming the lives of many Americans.
Assessment of Policies
The selected presidents applied powerful policies that strengthened the United States. Eisenhower created a powerful infrastructure system that supported economic growth. Kennedy started the new journey towards the empowerment of more people and the realization of civil liberties (Cohen, 2019). More people were encouraged to pursue their goals than ever before. Carter’s ambitious plan transformed the economy while Reagan addressed most of the problems affecting the people.
Public Interest and Democracy
By monitoring the actions of the Soviet Union, these leaders pursued suitable policies to protect the people while at the same finding solutions to their challenges. They presented superior incentives to improve economic performance and transform the military (Cohen, 2019). Such developments served the intended public interest. Presidents Reagan and Kennedy engaged in ambitious strategies to promote people’s liberties. These achievements created the best opportunity for improving democracy.
The American Constitution is a powerful document that guides presidents and politicians to meet the needs of the people and protect them against any form of attack. The example of the Pearl Harbor Attack explains why the country should be prepared and willing to prevent any possible attack (Gravelle, Reifler, & Scotto, 2017). The United States can, therefore, fight preemptive wars to avoid similar occurrences that can claim lives.
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Human Rights and Morality
The United States foreign policy should be informed by the concepts of morality and human rights. While preemptive wars might be permitted, they should do so by upholding the highest standards possible to protect people’s lives, rights, and cultural values. If such a policy fails to consider these cornerstones, it will be unacceptable and capable of catalyzing global challenges.
The actions of the above presidents managed to improve the United States’ economic and social gains. They applied the best foreign and domestic policies to achieve such goals. While this country can engage in preemptive war, it is critical to consider the concepts of human rights and morality.
Cohen, J. (2019). Accidental presidents: Eight men who changed America. New York, NY: Simon & Schuster.
Gravelle, T. B., Reifler, J., & Scotto, T. J. (2017). The structure of foreign policy attitudes in transatlantic perspective: Comparing the United States, United Kingdom, France and Germany. European Journal of Political Research, 56, 757-776. Web.