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Gradebook Instructors now have an easy way to collect students’ online quizzes with the Norton Gradebook without flooding their inboxes with e-mails.

Students can track their online quiz scores by setting up their own Student Gradebook.

Updates Fall 2007

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Chapters 4 and 5

  • Cold War (pp. 92-174)

The CIA recently declassified a raft of materials relating to Cold War intelligence activities, colloquially known as the “The Family Jewels.”  The full set of documents is available here.

Chapter 6

  • Foreign Policy Strategy for a New Era (pp. 259-280) 

Foreign Affairs is publishing essay statements on foreign policy by all of the major presidential candidates.  Statements by Barack Obama and Mitt Romney were published in the July/August 2007 edition.  Campaign websites can also be an excellent source for candidate’s foreign policy positions.  Take a look at the websites of: Hillary Clinton, Rudy Giuliani, Barack Obama, Mitt Romney, John Edwards, and John McCain.

  • United Nations (pp. 273-277)

With controversy brewing over issues as diverse as funding, corruption, the organization of the General Assembly, and the powers of the Security Council, debates over institutional reforms at the United Nations have taken center stage. 

In December 2004, Congress directed the U.S. Institute of Peace to create a task force on UN reform.  The results of their efforts are an extensive collection of materials, including audio, video, and written transcripts of key speeches and testimony, available here: Task Force on the United Nations.  The main report, spearheaded by Newt Gingrich and George Mitchell can be found here: American Interests and UN Reform.

For an internal perspective on United Nations reform, see the UN’s website, Reform at the United Nations, especially their 2005 report entitled Investing in the United Nations.

With the 2007 turnover in the key position of UN Secretary-General, all eyes will be on the UN’s new leader Ban Ki-moon, who will face a variety of cross-pressures in the pursuit of UN reform.  For an excellent description of the rule of the UN Secretary-General, see this brief by the Council on Foreign Relations.

  • Presidential-Congressional Relations (pp. 281-287)

Disputes between Congress and the President over division of war powers continue to escalate in intensity. 

One piece of the equation is funding for the Iraq war.  In April of 2007, Congress sent the President a funding bill which included a timetable for the withdrawal of U.S. troops.  On May 1st, President Bush vetoed the bill, setting the stage for further conflicts down the road.  These issues will undoubtedly continue to be debated as we move into the fall.

  • Public Opinion (pp. 298-303)

Public opinion in the United States continues to evolve, concerning both the Iraq War and foreign policy more broadly.

U.S. public opinion has turned decisively against the Iraq war, and majorities now favor ending the war and withdrawing U.S. troops.  Despite this, however, Americans continue to support relatively broad notions of international engagement over isolationism, according to this report by the Chicago Council on Global Affairs.

The Pew Research Center has recently published a global attitude study that considers global attitudes about the United States and Americans.

Chapter 7

  • Russia (pp. 310-321)

U.S. – Russian relations have been showing signs of fraying, with U.S. officials voicing concerns over Russia’s roll-back of democratic reforms, and it’s increasingly assertive stance towards the former Soviet republics.

  • China (pp. 321-328)

U.S. policy towards China continues to be a source of tremendous disagreement.  The Carnegie Endowment has hosted a series of debates by a wide array of China experts, on topics ranging from the sustainability of Communist Party rule, to the desirability of U.S.-China engagement over the issue of human rights.  You can see video and audio recordings of the debates here: Reframing China Policy.

In a new book, China: Fragile Superpower, Susan Shirk analyses not just the economic factors, but also the internal political factors which might impede China’s peaceful rise.

  • Nuclear  Proliferation (pp. 340-347)


The debate over the proper U.S. response to the potential development of Iranian nuclear weapons technology continues to heat up. In March of 2007, the UN Security Council passed Resolution 1747 imposing a second round of economic sanctions on Iran. Additional sanctions are under consideration. The prospects for various diplomatic approaches to the issue are discussed in this article from the International Institute for Strategic Studies, by Gary Samore and Maurice R. Greenberg. However, neoconservatives such as Robert Kagan have argued that the U.S. should recognize the futility of diplomacy with Iran and begin to seriously consider options for military action.

North Korea

On February 13, 2007 the members of the Six Party Talks (United States, China, Japan, North Korea, Russia, and South Korea) announced an agreement in which North Korea committed to shutting down its nuclear reactors at Yongbyon.  You can see the details of the agreement here .

Chapter 8 

  • 9-11 and The War on Terrorism (pp. 363-372)

The Center for American Progress’ latest Terrorism Index reveals the grim perspective of more than 100 of America’s top foreign-policy experts.  This bipartisan group views U.S. national security strategy as failing on several fronts and warn that the U.S. is distracted from the most important threats.

Despite the public focus on Iraq and Afghanistan, terrorism is a problem in may parts of the world.  The Terrorism Knowledge Base, developed by the Memorial Institute for the Prevention of Terrorism (MIPT), offers in-depth information on terrorist incidents, groups, and trials.

Take a look at the July 2007 National Intelligence Estimate on the Terrorist Threat to the U.S. Homeland.

  • The Iraq War (pp. 374-384)

The Iraq Study Group Report was published in December of 2006 and has formed a controversial center to the domestic debate over the U.S. rule in Iraq.  While the report makes a battery of recommendations about U.S. foreign policy actions, many of which have not yet been implemented. 

In February of 2007 a new National Intelligence Estimate on Iraq was published.  The estimate was bleak, stating that Iraqi forces were struggling to assume a greater security rule in the midst of deteriorating conditions.  Communal strife and political extremism remain rampant in an increasingly sectarian political environment.  The report states that “Unless efforts to reverse these conditions show measurable progress during the term of this estimate, the coming 12-18 months, we assess the overall security situation will continue to deteriorate at rates comparable to the latter of 2006.”

The Brookings Institution publishes an Iraq Index that compiles economic, public opinion, and security data in an attempt to the progress of the reconstruction efforts.  Their most recent report is available here.

There are several Iraqi bloggers providing a very different perspective from inside the war zone.  While most of them began writing while living in Baghdad, deteriorating conditions have forced most to flee to other locations in the region.  M.H.Z, an Iraqi college student and one time Baghdad resident now lives in Arbil in Northern Iraq.  He introduces his reasons for writing in a post “Who Are The Iraqi Bloggers.” Another blogger, Iraqi Confused Kid, is currently living in Aman, Jordan.  River, an Iraqi woman, kept a blog titled “Baghdad Burning” from 2004 to April of 2007, when she went suddenly silent.  Finally, an interesting web series titled “Hometown Baghdad” tracks the lives of three young Iraqis struggling to survive during the war.

  • The Arab-Israeli Conflict (pp. 390-397)

In 2006, Hamas won a majority in the Palestinian Parliament.  Israel and the United States responded by sanctioning and isolating Hamas.  In June of 2007, Hamas drove all PLO and Fatah forces from Gaza, effectively creating a partitioned Palestinian state.  The PLO government, which is recognized by the United States and Israel, retains control over the West Bank territories.  In an interview published by the Council on Foreign Relations, Anthony H. Cordesman says the de facto division of the Palestinian territories into a Hamas-controlled Gaza and a West Bank led by President Mahmoud Abbas raises many questions for U.S. foreign policy, including whether or not Hamas can be contained within Gaza.

For insight into Arab and Israeli views of the conflict, check out the Israeli newspaper Haaretz and the English language version of the Al Jazeera website.

Chapter 9

  • Peacekeeping and Global Security

New York University’s Center on International Cooperation’s (CIC) publishes an Annual Review of Global Peace Operations.  This report examines more than forty UN and non-UN peacekeeping missions in 2006, aiming to inform policy-makers, members of the media, academics and peace-keepers in the field. 

In 2006 the Human Security Report Project published the Human Security Report, examines trends in global political violence, the factors that drive these trends, and the consequences of the violence.  The report points to a decline in the number of human rights abuses, genocides, and even wars over the past decade.  They attribute this decline to a post cold-war increase in international activism, spearheaded by the UN.

The International Crisis Group is an independent, non-profit non-governmental organization that has published excellent first-hand briefings and analysis of conflict potential conflict situations in a wide array of countries ranging from Congo to Iraq.

  • Darfur (pp. 446-450)

The June 2007 briefing paper The Genocide in Darfur, published by Save, outlines the causes and scope of the current genocidal crisis in Darfur.  The devastating campaign has already claimed as many as 400,000 lives and the conflict has now crossed over into neighboring Chad and the Central African Republic. The report also describes a burgeoning refugee crisis with about 2.3 million Darfuris having fled their homes.  The International Crisis Group has an excellent report providing backgroung information on the conflict in Darfur.  For the perspective of a group advocating to end the conflict, check out the Enough project.

Chapter 10

  • 2006 Trade Deficit  (p. 470)

The 2005 deficit (AFP, Table 10.1, p. 470) increased another 6% to $758.5 billion.



Trade Balance



- 758,522

The updated trade deficit information can be found here.

  • The Doha Round (pp. 472-473)

For the latest information and contrasting perspectives, take a look at the websites of the World Trade Organization and Oxfam International.

  • Global Poverty and Sustainable Development (pp. 479-487)

For current information on U.S. development projects, take a look at the USAid website.  The Center for Global Development  has published a report on the effectiveness of foreign aid.

Several important books have recently been published on the subject of U.S. foreign aid.  In The White Man's Burden: Why the West's Efforts to Aid the Rest Have Done So Much Ill and So Little Good, William Easterly argues that many of the aid agencies, including the UN and Bono’s organization, do not effectively use their resources.  The Bottom Billion: Why the Poorest Countries are Failing and What Can Be Done About It, by Paul Collier, agrees with Easterly’s argument that much of our foreign aid is wasted and misguided, but the former World Bank Economist is more constructive in highlighting an aid plan that involves more than just handouts.  The End of Poverty: Economic Possibilities for Our Time takes a dramatically different perspective on the aid issue.  Jeffrey D. Sachs, an economist from Columbia University, highlights the many successes of foreign aid, including disease control, literacy, the green revolution, and the eradication of smallpox, and argues that we should learn from those successes and apply those lessons to the global challenges we now face.

  • Global Environment (pp. 491-495)
The debate on the global has been heating up, so to speak.  In October 2006 the British government issued a major report, The Economics of Climate Change, by Sir Nicholas Stern, a top official and former chief economist and senior vice president of the World Bank. The Stern Report raised concerns about the economic costs of global warming and other aspects of climate change.

While the Stern Report has received extensive support, it also has its critics. Sir Partha Dasgupta, Professor of Economics at University of Cambridge discusses the varied responses in his article, “Comments on the Stern Review's Economics of Climate Change.”

As to the scientific evidence, the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change issued a new report in April 2007, “Climate Change 2007: The Physical Science Basis”, which assesses the current scientific knowledge of the natural and human drivers of climate change and projections for future climate change.  The report was produced by 600 authors from 40 countries. Over 620 expert reviewers and a large number of government reviewers also participated.

The winner of the 2007 Academy Award for Best Documentary was Al Gore’s An Inconvenient Truth (see AFP, pp. 597-599, for excerpts from the book that accompanied the movie).

However, there are still nay-sayers in the global warming debate.  The American Enterprise Institute published, The Index of Leading Environmental Indicators 2007, intended to refute concerns about global warming, by highlighting progress in various environmental indicators.  The book is accompanied by a DVD documentary An Inconvenient Truth . . . or Convenient Fiction?, which aims to present an alternative to what it calls the “climate extremism” of Hollywood.

Chapter 11

  • The Status of Global Democracy (pp. 510-514)

Table 11.1 shows the status of global democracy according to The Freedom House 2006 Freedom in the World survey. The 2007 study is now available online.  

The Economist also publishes an alternative Democracy Index which ranks 165 countries around the world.  The 2007 Index is available here.

For research and analysis of global trends in democratization, see the Carnegie Endowment’s webpage on Democracy & Rule of Law.