The United States Positioning as a World Superpower: Its Subsequent Influence in the United Nations and Views Regarding Human Rights
“America stands at this moment at the summit of the world.”
-Winston Churchill, 1945
As World War II came to a close, a new need for an international peacekeeping organization became apparent in order to maintain peaceful relations among nations in the post-World War II era. The United Nations (UN) came into effect on October 24, 1945 for this very purpose and also “to reaffirm faith in fundamental human rights, in the dignity and worth of the human person, in the equal rights of men and women and of nations large and small”. One of the leading organs of the UN, the Security Council (UNSC), was given “primary responsibility for the maintenance of international peace and security” and held its first session on January 17, 1946. The United States was overwhelming supportive and instrumental in the construction of the UNSC as compared to their post-WWI refusal to support the League of Nations, an organization similar in structure to that of the UNSC. The United States decision to reject the League of Nations after WWI was seen as a controversial move to the rest of the world. It reinstated the U.S.’s isolationist foreign policy when the world was seeking for their cooperation in the maintenance of post-WWI peace. However by rejecting the League in 1919, the United States conversely benefited as it led them to be more influential in the creation and administration of the United Nations Security Council. The United Nations and its Security Council worked cooperatively with the U.S. post-WWII. However, in the last few decades, it can be seen that the values of the United States have grown apart from those of the UN. Nowadays, the United States seeks to encourage the protection of human rights and reducing human prejudices by advancing the notion of democracy and not necessarily by advocating global peace as it once had. Ironically, even though the UN aided the U.S. into its position as a world leader post-WWII, the U.S. tends to believe that the UN is holding them back from further developing as a prevailing Nation. This conflict between the U.S. and the UN can be seen specifically in the events leading up to America’s war on Iraq, where the U.S. demonstrated the use of force to promote democracy as their method of improving human rights.
The conclusion of World War II not only ended four years of bitter global warfare, but also marked the creation of a new era for the United States. The United States emerged out of World War II not only victorious but newly strengthened. The other Ally powers had proven victorious as well, but were faced with much greater losses than the United States. The United States exited the war relatively physically unharmed, economically revived, and diplomatically reinforced. The period of the Great Depression that had lingered over the American people for twelve...