The US left and right

Is US foreign policy one of a benevolent empire builder? The answer depends on the historian you talk to.

IS American foreign policy a saga of the triumph of benevolent construction of empire, or a story of subversion of core US values of democracy, peaceful cooperation and non-interference in the affairs of foreign countries? Or does the narrative involve elements of both?

These questions are relevant not only because the 20th Century was deservedly known as the American Century, but also because it is too soon to proclaim that the 21st won't be, given the ingenuity of Americans to lift themselves periodically out of economic doldrums.

The answers to these questions depend on the political leanings of US historians who have written about their country's foreign relations. Let us start with the right...

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