Chapter

Obama and smart power<sup>1</sup>

Joseph S. Nye

in US Foreign Policy

Second edition

Published on behalf of Oxford University Press

Published in print February 2012 | ISBN: 9780199585816
Published online September 2017 | e-ISBN: 9780191850912 | DOI: https://dx.doi.org/10.1093/hepl/9780199585816.003.0006
Obama and smart power1

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This chapter examines Barack Obama’s foreign policy agenda. The Obama administration referred to its foreign policy as ‘smart power’, which combines soft and hard power resources in different contexts. In sending additional troops to Afghanistan, his use of military force in support of a no-fly zone in Libya, and his use of sanctions against Iran, Obama showed that he was not afraid to use the hard components of smart power. The chapter first considers power in a global information age before discussing soft power in U.S. foreign policy. It then explains how public diplomacy came to be incorporated into American foreign policy and concludes by highlighting problems in wielding soft power.

Keywords: smart power; Barack Obama; foreign policy; hard power; soft power; Afghanistan; Libya; Iran; information age; public diplomacy

Chapter.  6775 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: International Relations ; US Politics

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