US Foreign Policy

US Foreign Policy

David Siharulidze

MINISTRY OF DEFENSE OF GEORGIA (2008 – 2010 ), Atlantic Council of Georgia Chairman (2011 –Current:)

Course description & goal:

Course aims to provide general understanding of the US foreign and security policy. Course reviews main principles, traditions and practices of the US foreign policy making. Students will be introduced to the main theoretical and practical aspects of the process of shaping American foreign policy. The course discusses military, economic, democracy aspects as well as domestic context of the US foreign policy. The course also focuses on grand debates in US foreign policy such as internationalism vs. isolationism; going to war; debate on defense spending, Free Trade vs. Protectionism. Case study incorporated into the course reviews formulation, implementation and effectiveness of the holistic approach based strategy that ended the Cold War.

Course length and structure:

Course duration is one week and it is composed of three lectures. Each lecture is three hours long with one fifteen minutes break in-between. Course includes 3 seminars and a case study.

Instruction language:



Interactive course uses cooperative methods of teaching such as explaining, demonstrating and collaborating. Course encourages critical thinking that helps students to  better comprehend and absorb the knowledge acquired during the course.  

By the end of the course students will gain:

Understanding and knowledge of: conceptual and theoretical basis, traditions and domestic context of American Foreign and Security Policy formulation; Institutional Mechanisms, Political Dynamics and nature of National Interests that influences and shapes US foreign and Security Policy; Grand debates in American Politics that shape US Foreign and Security Policy Decisions; Current US foreign policy issues.

Ability and skills to critically analyze US Foreign and Security policy and policy decisions including current issues of the US foreign policy; 


Lecture 1.Traditions in American Foreign Policy according to Walter Russell Mead.

Basic National Interests and Main Principles in American Foreign Policy. Compromises between the Goals.
Domestic Context of US Foreign and Security Policy. Stakeholders and Dynamics.
Last half hour: Current Issues

Lecture 2.Grand Debates in US Foreign Policy:

  • Internationalism vs. Isolationism
  • Funding for the Defense
  • National Security vs. Bill of Rights
  • Free Trade vs. Protectionism
  • Going to War
  • Last half hour: Current Issues

Lecture 3.Case Study: End of Cold War and fall of Soviet Union. Reagan Doctrine.

  • National Security Directive 75
  • Last half hour: Current Issues

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