Discussion Group August 29, 2022: Global perspectives on current U.S. foreign policy

U.S. foreign policy, which is primarily determined and led by the President in consultation with Congress, is in constant flux due to domestic political considerations as well as developments overseas. The approach of the current administration is “foreign policy for the middle class,” which ties U.S. diplomacy to peace, security and prosperity at home while trying to strengthen the multilateral international order. Recent surveys of international opinion (Pew Research Center, Eurasia Group) show that, while the United States and American democracy continue to be viewed positively in general, the U.S. loses esteem in China and is viewed less favorably in countries which are treaty allies of the United States.

To discuss:

1. What are the fundamental factors driving perceptions of US foreign policy by other countries and their people?

2. Why do the perspectives US foreign policy by other countries and their people matter?

3. In this context, how can the US advance its current foreign policy agenda to address regional and global issues such as the war in Ukraine, shifting alignments in the Middle East, the COVID-19 pandemic, the threat of climate change, and the risk of nuclear conflict?

The following resources provide background for our discussion:

A. International Attitudes Toward the U.S., NATO and Russia in a Time of Crisis, Pew Research Center (June 22, 2022) at https://www.pewresearch.org/global/2022/06/22/international-attitudes-toward-the-u-s-nato-and-russia-in-a-time-of-crisis/

B. International opinion of Joe Biden in 6 charts, Pew Research Center (July 25, 2022) at https://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2022/07/25/international-opinion-of-joe-biden-in-6-charts/

C. Democracy’s Promise: International Views of America in the Biden Era, Eurasia Group Foundation (June 2022) at https://egfound.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/06/Modeling-Democracy-2022.pdf

D. Future Foreign Policy: Global perceptions of the United States, A discussion with Caroline Gray of the Eurasia Group Foundation about how foreign publics view the United States and its foreign policy (June 16, 2021, 37 minutes) at https://youtu.be/u8r6ellISLY?t=420

E. The conundrum facing America’s allies is how to cope with a great imperial power in decline that is still a great imperial power. The Atlantic (August 8, 2022) at https://www.theatlantic.com/international/archive/2022/08/europe-america-military-empire-decline/670960/?utm_source=email&utm_medium=social&utm_campaign=share