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Nye--Soft Power and American Foreign Policy

Nye--Soft Power and American Foreign Policy - AUTHOR TITLE...

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AUTHOR: Nye, Joseph S. TITLE: Soft Power and American Foreign Policy SOURCE: Political Science Quarterly 119 no2 255-70 Summ 2004 The magazine publisher is the copyright holder of this article and it is reproduced with permission.  Further reproduction of this article in violation of the copyright is prohibited. JOSEPH S. NYE, JR.     Anti-Americanism has increased in the past few years. Thomas Pickering, a seasoned diplomat,  considered 2003 "as high a zenith of anti-Americanism as we've seen for a long time."(FN1) Polls  show that our soft power losses can be traced largely to our foreign policy. "A widespread and  fashionable view is that the United States is a classically imperialist power ....  That mood has been  expressed in different ways by different people, from the hockey fans in Montreal who boo the  American national anthem to the high school students in Switzerland who do not want to go to the  United States as exchange students."(FN2) An Australian observer concluded that "the lesson of Iraq  is that the US's soft power is in decline. Bush went to war having failed to win a broader military  coalition or UN authorization. This had two direct consequences: a rise in anti-American sentiment,  lifting terrorist recruitment; and a higher cost to the US for the war and reconstruction effort."(FN3) A  Gallup International poll showed that pluralities in fifteen out of twenty-four countries around the world  said that American foreign policies had a negative effect on their attitudes toward the United States.     A Eurobarometer poll found that a majority of Europeans believe that the United States tends to play  a negative role in fighting global poverty, protecting the environment, and maintaining peace in the  world.(FN4) When asked in a Pew poll to what extent they thought the United States "takes your  interests into account," a majority in twenty out of forty-two countries surveyed said "not too much" or  "not at all."(FN5) In many countries, unfavorable ratings were highest among younger people.  American pop culture may be widely admired among young people, but the unpopularity of our foreign  policies is causing the next generation to question American power.(FN6)     American music and films are more popular in Britain, France, and Germany than they were twenty  years ago, another period when American policies were unpopular in Europe, but the attraction of our  policies is even lower than it was then.(FN7) There are also hints that unpopular foreign policies might  be spilling over and undercutting the attractiveness of some aspects of American popular culture. A 
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