Due to increased telecommunications, e-commerce and globalization, the world is becoming more and more of a global community everyday. However, research suggests that due to these changes in society, economy and politics, that many issues are present and emerging with urgent need of attention. As the world becomes a smaller place to live, international issues present today will continue to be issues in the future for organizations doing business and governmental policies. It is evident that in order for a change to take place, effective unified leadership is needed to combat these issues burdening the world community. Not only have these issues of war, poverty and environment been on the minds of the American government for decades but also they have entered into the global arena as American policy has slowly become embedded in the policies of other nations. It is the foreign policy of the United States to aid others in need. One example is the war in Iraq and transformation to a democracy. However, it seems there is a direct relationship with that of American foreign policy and the increase and severity of international issues. It does not seem that any work is effectively taking place for the better. Wars are still raging; world is becoming more polluted as global warning creates catastrophes like hurricanes Katrina and Rita; and people are suffering in poverty without adequate resources to become productive citizens.
It is clear these issues feed off each other and exist not only globally but locally stateside. Not only are these issues influencing foreign policy but also national security. Ever since September 11, 2001; Americans have felt an invasion, breach in security with the realization the United States is not as strong as we once were. Attention to international issues which are also local issues makes the United States vulnerable to future threats. These future threats only create new issues and exasperate the existing issues.
This paper examines three issues of war, poverty and environment. This paper will explore how these issues are significant and influence the future. Such issues prove to be significant and in need of addressing because they continue to exist with few solutions in sight. As the world becomes smaller so does the threat that these issues become larger in scope and severity. With each issue, new complications arise as well as new innovation that has both positive and negative ramifications for society. While wondrous and amazing is the time we live in, it is also dangerous and unstable. Technology and innovation should help solve problems but instead creates new problems of public safety, security and well-being. Also it seems only a few elite groups are benefiting.
The day September 11, 2001 changed Americans and the perception of security and strength. Until that day, we thought ourselves as untouchable. As a result of the events of that day, we find ourselves at war. While other conflicts exist, mainly in Africa, parts of the Middle East and Latin America; this war in Iraq and on terrorism takes center stage. It not only upsets the American way of life but also creates conflict and chaos for people of other countries. It is the view of the current administration that this is conflict based on a need for democracy, based on a need to stop nuclear war and production of weapons of mass destruction ending terrorism, but this is a war based on the American need for oil and energy supply (Falk and Krieger 2). Literature suggests, war creates poverty and environmental problems with this quote from the Pacific Institute, "armed conflicts are often caused by disputes over shared resources. And struggles over these resources are often the result of their depletion, degradation, or unsustainable use" (Environment and Security par. 2). The war in Iraq has not benefited the American people as energy costs have increased and employment opportunities have moved abroad. It has resulted in massive construction and investment in the infrastructure in that region but has left a hole in national security as the military is occupied with providing peacekeeping. One can conclude this lack of manpower led to the delayed response of rescuing hurricane victims. This and a lack of communication amongst leadership within the organizational structure not to mention federal funding. The war in Iraq will only cause continued poverty for not only people of that region as they struggle with the aftermaths reforms creates within their well-established culture but also to future generations of Americans who will be paying for the war. Falk and Krieger explain how this threatens national security, "Continuing down the path along which the Bush administration is leading is likely to produce a climate of perpetual fear and war. It is also likely to undermine our security and freedoms at home, even moving us into a direction of a police state" (4).
The war failing creates poor image not only at home which influences personal progress and morale but also presents a negative image to the world and American allies. Our increased need of security since 9/11 has also created a sense of invasion due to the Freedom of Information Act. Yes, it works to identity possible terrorists but it also makes it extremely difficult for the common man to do something as fundamental as apply for a job or start phone service. This creates animosity toward the war and has a negative influence on society. It seems the class divide keeps getting larger as the economy recovers slowly but new work goes to under skilled, cheap labor or is out sourced to foreigners as companies such for cost effective measures to stay in business. It is a never-ending vicious cycle perpetrated by war. This conflict over the Middle East is as old as time itself and remains a future issue as people continue to fight over energy. This in turn, will have a direct negative affect on the environment as organizations look for cost-cutting avenues and fail to see the extra investment of taking care of the area.
Poverty is an equal opportunity factor in society throughout the world. It happens to people in developing, emerging markets as much as it happens in industrialized, wealthy countries like the United States and the United Kingdom. In a sense, globalization has resulted in additional earnings, however, it has left many behind and the disparities are sharp. As discussed earlier, the gap between rich and poor keeps growing as fighting poverty increases. Part of the reason why poverty persists in the world's richest nations is because of leadership and the people in power. Shah writes, "both health and education are key to any economy or nation to grow and be strong, yet neither were major issues during the 2002 presidential campaign" (14). Education has been linked and proven to combat poverty as more and more people become literate, they can also enter the workforce, however, inequality is powerful factor. Simply, the United States has not focused on alienable basic human rights but set up a system that makes education and healthcare privileges (Shah 14). This is another fallout of policy focusing and allotting too much energy and funding toward international issues. The country should be focusing on these international issues also existing at home.
Still this is the real double edged sword because the United States needs to address international issues of poverty and health to protect national security. One of the main reasons developing nations fail to reach as level of peace and resort to war is because of ineffective public services within the infrastructure. Lack of services creates famine and poverty. It also promotes the spread of harmful and deadly disease like AIDS which serve as potential health threats to the world population (Kassalow, 10). Yet the very existence of national security threatens innovation and creativity as well as sharing information and research done by scientists worldwide. It is perplexing as this allows poverty and health care to continue as issues in the future with greater potential threat. Once again, it is the doctrine of existing leadership that holds the key to moving forward and embracing new unproven solutions for these issues. In a way, it is easy to assume policy makers want these issues to continue as it fuels the economy and burdens society (Kassalow 10). It also makes politics much more interesting.
Environmental issues remain an influence to the global community and is important to address because we are quickly depleting our resources, making the world unlivable. Once the land is destroyed; this makes peaceful survival very small and as an emerging global community, we must be aware of what is happening. Yet, the United States continues to pursue outside sources instead of utilizing available technologies in a way to foster recyclable sources of energy because danger to national security. Researchers are unable to share information with researchers from other countries and vice versa. Plus there is the fear that information from outside, could be…