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1.

Making the World Safe for Democracy [electronic resource]: Manifest Destiny

As the United States reshaped Manifest Destiny for use in the 20th century, the concept came to be equated not with conquest and expansion, but with the spread of American values and institutions. Focusing on World War I and the Russian Revolution, the section "A New World Order" traces the deflected trajectory of President Wilson's idealistic plan to export democracy - a plan that ended in compromises and broken dreams. "Containment," which begins with World War II, examines the spread of communism in Asia and U.S. opposition to it via the Kennan policy of containment and the Truman Doctrine. And "Quagmire" discusses how the Kennedy and Johnson administrations felt duty-bound to escalate American political and military involvement in Vietnam as a part of an ideological proxy war bet [...]
Online
2010
2.

To Conquer or Redeem [electronic resource]: Manifest Destiny

With the closing of the American West, Manifest Destiny was in need of new direction. The section "New Frontiers" considers implications of Frederick Jackson Turner's Frontier Thesis as it scrutinizes U.S. history from the end of the Gilded Age to the brink of the Spanish-American War. "An Empire of Liberty" takes a step back to assess aspects of Manifest Destiny from its birth during the pre-Revolutionary era through Reconstruction. And "Benevolent Assimilation" provides an in-depth look at the Spanish-American War, the Philippines Insurrection, the annexations of Puerto Rico and Hawaii, and U.S. intervention in China during the Boxer Rebellion to illustrate how expanded economic influence, military might, and presidential powers contributed to U.S. imperialism during the administra [...]
Online
2010
3.

Monsters to Destroy [electronic resource]: Manifest Destiny

With the collapse of the U.S.S.R., suddenly the U.S. was the sole superpower - a militaristic global leader with no clear enemy or foreign policy goal. The section "New World Disorder" illustrates the unprecedented turbulence of the fractured post - Cold War world during the George H. W. Bush administration: the Tiananmen Square protests, the U.S. invasion of Panama, the fall of the Berlin Wall, the Gulf War, ethnic cleansing in the Balkans and Rwanda, and famine in Somalia. "Indispensable Nation" analyzes President Clinton's inability to create a demilitarized Manifest Destiny based solely on trade and economic growth. And "Smarter Than History" uses pivotal events from the George W. Bush presidency - the 9/11 attacks and the invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq - to examine the compro [...]
Online
2011
4.

Fixed vs. Floating Exchange Rates [electronic resource]

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Explores the factors that affect foreign exchange rates as well as how the exchange rates impact the global economy. A case study analyzes how the fluctuating exchange rates affected two competing corporations: U.S.-based Caterpillar and Japan-based Komatsu. The second case study shows how the system of floating exchange rates coped with the shock of the oil crisis of 1973.
Online
1994
5.

Managing Currencies and Policy Coordination [electronic resource]

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Explains how and why countries manage their currencies. A case study explores the problems created by the rapid and large appreciation of the dollar caused by an expansive fiscal policy combined with a tight monetary policy in the United States during the mid 1980s. Explores the benefits and downsides of policy coordination in a case study of the United Kingdom joining the European Monetary System.
Online
1994
6.

UN Human Rights Conference Preview [electronic resource]

The World Conference on Human Rights was held by the United Nations in Vienna, Austria, in 1993. With representatives of 171 nations, and some 7,000 participants overall, it was largest gathering ever on human rights. The conference did have an expansive view of human rights, with the normal political and economic rights being explicitly augmented by women's rights, indigenous peoples' rights, minority rights, and more. This episode looks at the problems, priorities, and players at the conference. UN Secretary-General Boutros-Boutros Ghali, discusses the limitations, universality, the current status, and the future of the United Nations. Also featured are reports on Cambodia's move toward democracy; a human rights advocate becomes president in Guatemala; and families of murder victim [...]
Online
1993
7.

The United Nations and Human Rights [electronic resource]

The UN Charter gives the Security Council primary responsibility for the maintenance of international peace and security. In fulfilling this responsibility, the Council can establish a UN peacekeeping operation. This episode examines the UN's human rights mandate in light of its peacekeeping operations in Bosnia, Somalia, and El Salvador. Kofi Annan, then Undersecretary-General of UN Peacekeeping Operations, is interviewed about these missions. Also featured are reports on Hungary's nationalist movement; on the black and Afro-Caribbean experience in the United Kingdom; and an interview with Anna Deavere Smith - writer, performer, social commentator, and star of her own one-woman show, Twilight: Los Angeles 1992.
Online
1994
8.

Voices of Human Rights [electronic resource]

Adopted in response to the atrocities committed during World War II, the United Nation Declaration of Human Rights expressed the rights to which all human beings are inherently entitled. More than fifty years later, human rights activists still work to insure that these rights are respected, and shine a spotlight when they are not. This episode explores the work done by these activists. Rights Reel looks at Haitian refugees held by the U.S. government at the military base in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba; a video diary from the Palestinian occupied territories; and the witness program of the Lawyers Committee, which distributes video cameras to human rights activists around the world. Also included is a report on the UN Truth Commission on El Salvador and an interview with Eliot Abrams, a Sta [...]
Online
1993
9.

Vienna Conference on Human Rights [electronic resource]

The 1993 UN Vienna Conference on Human Rights included representatives from 171 nations. The key result of the conference was the Vienna Declaration and Programme of Action which states: "The promotion and protection of human rights is a matter of priority for the international community, and that the Conference affords a unique opportunity to carry out a comprehensive analysis of the international human rights system and of the machinery for the protection of human rights, in order to enhance and thus promote a fuller observance of those rights, in a just and balanced manner." This episode features interviews with conference attendees, including John Shattuck, U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for Human Rights. Also featured are reports on Liberia, Egypt, Angola, and a musical salut [...]
Online
1993
10.

Worse Than War [electronic resource]: Genocide, Eliminationism, and the Ongoing Assault on Humanity

Genocide is many things - horrific, tragic, and immoral, among others. But one thing it is not, says political scientist Daniel Goldhagen, is inevitable. In this program, the author of Hitler's Willing Executioners explores the social and psychological factors that have repeatedly pushed stable societies into the insanity of mass killing. In Rwanda, Goldhagen speaks with participants in murder squads that rampaged in 1994 as well as witnesses of those atrocities. In Guatemala, he confronts former President Efraín Ríos Montt, considered by many to be responsible for genocide against indigenous peoples in the 1980s. Interviewees also include former U.S. Secretary of State Madeleine Albright; Bosnian leader Haris Silajdzic, who called for intervention against ethnic cleansing in 1992; a [...]
Online
2009
11.

Birth of Rock Music

U.S.A., the 1950s. A climate of racism pervades society —particularly in the South, where it is unthinkable that whites should listen to the same music as blacks. It is in this context that a new style of music appears. Afro-American rhythm and blues is adapted, and the result is rock ’n’ roll. However, for the moment, this music is mostly played by black artists for a black community. Then, in 1954, Elvis Presley walks through the door of the Sun Records studio. The young truck driver wants to give his mother a record as a present, so he records two songs, pays $4.00, and leaves with his record under his arm. Elvis Presley is spotted by the owner of Sun Records, enjoys a meteoric rise, and brings rock ’n’ roll to the wider, white American audience. After the United States, England g [...]
Online
2017; 2016
12.

Persian Gulf War: Part 1

Iraq's 1990 invasion of Kuwait resulted in more than one million troops facing off against each other in the desert of the Persian Gulf. The Allied Coalition's air war, known as Operation Desert Storm, involved the most sophisticated technological weaponry available.
Online
2017; 2003
13.

Space Conquest

It’s the Cold War between the U.S.S.R. and the U.S.A. The Soviet Union has a clear lead in the conquest of space. America fully understands all that is at stake politically on April 12, 1961: Yuri Gagarin becomes the first man to make a journey into space. The news creates a huge impact around the world. The Soviet Union now appears to be the most advanced nation on the planet. Khrushchev announces swaggeringly: “The Capitalist countries are trying to catch up with us!” Since January 1961, John Fitzgerald Kennedy has been leading the U.S.A. He is an ardent supporter of the space program even though the accumulated delay behind the U.S.S.R. seems insurmountable... Then, on September 12, 1962, Kennedy makes a speech that becomes famous: “We choose to go to the Moon.” These words give a [...]
Online
2017; 2016
14.

Gerald Ford: Interview (1/14/91)

An interview with former President Gerald Ford on the prospect of the United States going to war in the Persian Gulf, following Iraq’s invasion of Kuwait.
Online
2017; 1991
15.

George Kennan: At a Century's Ending (4/18/96)

David Gergen talks with George Kennan about his book At a Century's Ending: Reflections 1982-1995.
Online
2017; 1996
16.

The Cuban Missile Crisis

1962—American spy planes spot launch ramps in Cuba that are designed for nuclear missiles. President Kennedy orders that the island be blockaded in order to inspect any ships wishing to dock there. On October 26, Khrushchev tells Kennedy that he will continue his action: “If the United States want war, we shall find ourselves in hell.” The CIA informs the American president that 24 Russian missiles are now operational and pointing at precise locations in the country. Off the coast of Cuba, the U.S. Navy confronts the Russian fleet and is hunting down Russian submarines. Two of them break surface, but a third remains submerged, refusing to come up. Three exercise charges are dropped to emphasize the order to surface. Moscow orders its vessel to react. A nuclear torpedo is loaded into [...]
Online
2017
17.

Bill Moyers Journal: Author Louise Erdrich / America’s Long War in Afghanistan

Renowned for her mastery of multiple genres, how did award-winning writer Louise Erdrich find her voice? In this edition of the Journal, Bill Moyers sits down with Erdrich—author of 13 novels, poetry, children’s literature, and a memoir—to discuss how her Native American heritage and unique cultural experience has impacted her life, motherhood, and work. Moyers also talks with history and international relations expert and former U.S. Army Colonel Andrew J. Bacevich about America’s long war in Afghanistan. Broadcast date: April 9, 2010. (57 minutes)
Online
2016; 2010
18.

Cold War Face-Off (10/16/97)

Jim Lehrer discusses the significance of the Cold War and the Cuban Missile Crisis with presidential historians and Sergei Khrushchev, the son of the late Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev.
Online
2017; 1997
19.

Persian Gulf War: Part 2

Iraq's 1990 invasion of Kuwait resulted in more than one million troops facing off against each other in the desert of the Persian Gulf. The Allied Coalition's air war, known as Operation Desert Storm, involved the most sophisticated technological weaponry available.
Online
2017; 2003
20.

Cuban Missile Crisis: Three Men Go to War

Explore the inside story of the Cuban Missile Crisis in October 1962, when the world teetered on the brink of nuclear holocaust. In the first major feature documentary on the subject, the film brings to life the three central characters-Kennedy, Castro and Khrushchev-and explores how the world's most powerful men fell into an abyss of their own making and outlines the courage and luck it took to climb out again.
Online
2018; 2012