Watch Great Decisions in Foreign Policy

The series Great Decisions in Foreign Policy is a show that features important people in international relations and ho their decisions affect the way the United States deals with the rest of the world. Featured on this show are decision and policy makers and commentary from other political figures.

PBS
5 Seasons, 40 Episodes
January 6, 2013
Documentary & Biography
Cast: Drew Barrymore, Ralph Begleiter, Nancy Birdsall, Peter Brabeck
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Great Decisions in Foreign Policy Full Episode Guide

  • For decades, the U.S. has been a leader in promoting global health. But foreign assistance has fallen out of favor in some circles in Washington, they argue the U.S. should help America first. Is the golden age of global health coming to an end, or just getting started?

  • South Africa's transition from apartheid to a democracy captivated the world in the early 1990's.  While it remains the most advanced country in Africa, allegations of state corruption and huge disparities in wealth threaten its revolutionary dream.

  • The global power balance is rapidly evolving, leaving the United States at a turning point with respect to its level of engagement and the role of its military. How does the military function in today's international order, and what role should Diplomacy play in U.S. defense strategy?

  • Once seen as a model of democracy, Turkey may be slipping toward autocracy. Critics charge that President Recip Tayyip Erdogan used a failed coup d'etat in 2016 as a means of consolidating power  -  power he says is necessary to secure the state.  Great Decisions producers traveled to Turkey to examine the relationship with this key U.S. ally.

  • The US has thrived on its vibrant and free press since the Founding Fathers first put the concept into law in the Bill of Rights as an important, independent check on power.  Now Foreign policy is tweeted from the White House and fake news has entered the zeitgeist, while social media is proving to be a double-edged sword.   What's next for media and the free press?

  • China is the second largest economy in the world, and it's expected to bump the U.S. out of the top rank in less than a decade. Beijing is increasingly looking beyond China's borders, toward investment in Asia and across the world.  What does China's massive One Belt One Road initiative mean for America?

  • To his detractors, Putin is an autocrat, crushing any threat to his power, while renewing Soviet-style expansionism.  To supporters, Putin represents Russia's redemption as a global superpower  - and an alternative to the liberal democracy espoused by the West.  Great Decisions explores what drives Putin's Foreign Policy.

  • The past 70 years has been the era of Pax Americana, a period of relative stability thanks to the influence and ballast provided by the United States.  But with Russian expansion and a rising China, how long can it last?

  • The nuclear status quo is changing. Nine nations are declared nuclear powers—and non-state actors are upending cold war era strategy. How can leaders stop countries from acquiring nuclear weapons, keep nuclear materials out of the hands of non-state actors and protect nuclear facilities from potential terrorist attacks?

  • U.S. troops have been in Afghanistan for over 15 years—making it the longest war in American history. As Washington and NATO pivot away from Afghanistan by reducing troop numbers, the ability of the government and security forces to maintain stability will be tested.

  • Once known for economic and political turmoil, the majority of nations in Latin America are now constitutional democracies. Shifting away from the revolutionary leftist economic policies, Latin Americans are combining left-leaning social agendas with more pragmatic governance.

  • After decades of relative stability, the U.S. energy revolution is beginning to shift the dynamics of the energy market. Once dependent on the Middle East for much of its energy, the U.S. is now producing more of its own—potentially freeing America to pursue a new foreign policy in the region.

  • Saudi Arabia is a nation in transition, with increasing signs that the status quo it has enjoyed for decades is beginning to fray. Once known for having a special relationship with the U.S., growing concerns about human rights, terrorism and the Iran nuclear deal suggest the relationship between Riyadh and Washington is coming under strains.

  • China is building up its maritime presence, investing heavily in its Navy, and ambitiously advancing territorial claims in the South and East China seas. Does this maritime expansionism indicate a more aggressive foreign policy or is it simply the next logical step in China's growth?

  • International trade has transformed the way we live. Supporters of free trade say it creates the greatest amount of wealth for the highest number of people, fostering growth and lifting nations out of poverty. Opponents say free trade eliminates jobs at home and makes the country vulnerable.

  • The European Union is under severe strain. British voters have chosen to leave the EU while the Eurozone debt crisis and the influx of migrants pose an existential threat to the political and economic bloc. Can the EU withstand the pressure?

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