From the Hamiltonian-Jeffersonian split over English and French policy in the 1790s to the Republican-Democratic clash over Haitian policy in the 1990s, Americans and foreign observers have been troubledand often exasperatedby the extraordinary influence of U.S. domestic politics on matters of vital national security. Some critics, including Alexis de Tocqueville, concludedthat America's democratic system would cripple the effective and efficient conduct of its foreign policy. In this first historical overview of the subject, Melvin Small examines the central role of domestic politics in the shaping and conduct of American foreign policy from the early republic to the end of the Cold War.
About the Author
Melvin Small is professor in the Department of History at Wayne State University.