How did President Clinton's foreign policy of nation-building lead to problems?

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pohnpei397 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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Every American administration that has tried to engage in nation building has encountered very similar problems.  Presidents in the ‘60s had these problems with Vietnam.  Clinton had them in places like Somalia.  The second President Bush had them in Iraq and Afghanistan.  These problems arise every time we try to nation-build because building a nation is essentially not something that can be done artificially and quickly.

Clinton’s attempts and nation building led to problems because they involved us in trying to build other countries rapidly into something that it took us centuries to become.  Clinton went into Somalia and tried to make it into a modern democratic society.  Our troops were there trying to keep the peace until this happened.  The problem is that democracies are not made overnight.  People have to learn gradually about how to be democratic.  They have to slowly build a democratic mindset.  Clinton’s attempts at nation-building committed American lives and money to trying to force this change to occur rapidly.  This led to problems because it put our troops in danger and it used our money to try to do something that has repeatedly proven to be impossible.

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