Segments in this Video

America's International Role (01:59)


The actions and interests of the U.S. pervade most aspects of the global community. Bret Stephens identifies three key areas of reduced involvement and its impact.

Slavyansk, Ukraine (02:53)

In 2014, fighting between government forces and Russian-backed separatists resulted in devastation for residents. John Herbst explains how orderly societies become engaged in violent conflict and cites the Russian policy preference.

Kiev, Ukraine (03:35)

In 2013, the Yanukovych government suspended the Ukraine/European Union Association Agreement and sought closer ties with Russia, triggering the Euromaidan. Stephens cites Russian actions after the failure to impose consequences on Bashar Assad for using sarin gas in Damascus. The Broken Window Theory can be applied internationally.

Ukrainian Army Outpost (04:16)

Soldiers have old military equipment and weapons. In April 2014, Moscow began a hybrid war in the Donbass region. A couple describes the war and hopes for American intervention.

Yavoriv, Ukraine (02:51)

Ukraine is not a NATO member and entitled to NATO defense. U.S. military members train Ukraine Armed Forces but the U.S. does not provide weapons or equipment. Herbst explains Russian arguments used to justify Kremlin aggression.

Tallinn, Estonia (05:45)

The Estonian government is concerned with Russia's use of force in Crimea and Ukraine. Operation Saber Strike is an annual military exercise in the Baltic States. Experts consider American involvement in defending NATO countries.

Fostering Liberal Democracies (07:04)

The core of American society is the personal enjoyment of freedoms. The Tempelhof Airfield was the epicenter of the Berlin Airlift. In 2015, Germany admitted over 1 million refugees; experts consider American involvement in the Middle East.

Mount Bental, Israel (03:48)

The U.N. only observes activities in the Golan Heights region. Conflicts in the Middle East concern Israel; the U.S. lost credibility with Israel. The Golani Brigade is in a constant state of training.

American Withdrawal (03:14)

The U.S. will adopt a collegial approach to foreign policy. Experts discuss what will happen to Israel and international security if America retreats from the Middle East. In Jerusalem, a class of Israeli defense force cadets graduates.

Manila, Philippines (05:23)

Walter Russell Mead considers the Pax Britannica and replacing the system. The Port of Manila is one of the busiest in the world; fishing is a major livelihood. The South China Sea is a contested area.

Pagasa Island (04:21)

The island supports 90 permanent residents and a small naval garrison; China lays claim to all Spratly Islands. Experts discuss China's perspective and American involvement. A Chinese squid boat fishes in the Philippine's exclusive economic zone.

South China Sea Conflict (05:24)

The U.S. has been involved in many freedom of navigation operations. Stephens explains why the U.S. Navy shoulders the burden. A Chinese Coast Guard ship monitors the Sierra Madre; China is an aggressive power with regional designs to conquer territories.

World's Police? (03:24)

Johan Norberg questions America's continuing global involvement and its role as a superpower. Experts discuss continual claims that America is in decline and a foreign policy adequate to primacy.

Credits: Is America in Retreat? (00:30)

Credits: Is America in Retreat?

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Is America in Retreat?

DVD (Chaptered) Price: $169.95
DVD + 3-Year Streaming Price: $254.93
3-Year Streaming Price: $169.95



This program is a fascinating documentary that looks at the hard questions American foreign policy leaders face in dealing with today’s rapidly changing world order. Just how deeply entangled should America be in the world’s affairs? What alternatives are there to being the world’s policemen? Is there really a downside to retreat? And in the absence of the U.S., how might global order be maintained—or destroyed? Based on the book America in Retreat by Pulitzer-Prize winning columnist Bret Stephens, the documentary is hosted by Cato Senior Fellow Johan Norberg who travels the world to examine the questions facing a nation that is leaning back toward isolationism.

Length: 56 minutes

Item#: BVL154861

ISBN: 978-1-64347-874-6

Copyright date: ©2016

Closed Captioned

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