Current Issues

Afghanistan

The United States in Afghanistan

Students grapple with questions regarding the involvement of the United States in Afghanistan by exploring Afghanistan’s culture and history and then examining the events that led to the Soviet invasion, the arrival of Osama bin Laden, and the situation today.
China

China on the World Stage: Weighing the U.S. Response

Students explore the history of Western relations with China and consider the global effects of China's economic growth, societal transformation, and increasing international involvement.
Climate Change

Climate Change and Questions of Justice

Students examine the causes and effects of global warming and delve into questions of who is most responsible for and vulnerable to the changing climate. Students also grapple with how to respond to climate change in ways that are both effective and fair.
Cuba

History, Revolution, and Reform: New Directions for Cuba

Students trace Cuba’s history from the country’s precolonial past to its most recent economic, social, and political changes. Students re-create the discussions Cubans on the island are having about their country’s future.
Foreign Aid

Dilemmas of Foreign Aid: Debating U.S. Policies

Students explore the history of U.S. foreign assistance and institutions that distribute aid today, considering the trade-offs of aid and articulating views on the future direction of U.S. policy.
Genocide

Confronting Genocide: Never Again?

Students explore the evolution of the international community's response to genocide and examine how the U.S. has responded to six cases of genocide.
Human Rights

Competing Visions of Human Rights: Questions for U.S. Policy

Students probe the history of human rights and consider options for defining and protecting rights.
Immigration

Immigration and the U.S. Policy Debate

Students explore the history of immigration to the United States and current U.S. immigration policy in the Trump era as they consider the complexities of U.S. immigration policy and prepare to articulate their own views about this issue.
International Trade

International Trade in a Globalized World

Students explore the controversies surrounding international trade and consider the issues that affect trade including globalization in the United States and abroad.
Iraq

A Global Controversy: The U.S. Invasion of Iraq

Readings and activities explore the history of Iraq, help students understand events surrounding the U.S.-led invasion, and examine the effects of the war on Iraq, the United States, and the international community.
Mexico

Between Two Worlds: Mexico at the Crossroads

Students explore Mexico's economic and cultural transformation and probe Mexico's complex identity and history, coming face-to-face with the difficult policy choices confronting the people of Mexico today.
Middle East

The Middle East: Questions for U.S. Policy

Students examine oil and geopolitics, issues between the Palestinians and Israel, the significance of the Iranian Revolution, and other issues that have shaped U.S. relations in the region.
Nigeria

Nigeria: History, Identity, and Change

Students explore Nigeria’s history—from the precolonial to the present—and consider the future of Africa's most populous country.
Nuclear Weapons

The Challenge of Nuclear Weapons

Students probe the history of nuclear weapons and the concept of deterrence. They examine arguments for and against nuclear weapons, and the challenges of leftover Cold War arsenals, proliferation, and the threat of nuclear terrorism.
Russia

Russia’s Transformation: Challenges for U.S. Policy

Students survey the economic issues and political developments that have shaped the outlook of policymakers in the Kremlin and Washington, D.C.
Terrorism

Responding to Terrorism: Challenges for Democracy

Students consider the changing nature of terrorism, the motivations of terrorists, and the policy challenges for the United States.
Turkey

Empire, Republic, Democracy: 
Turkey’s Past and Future

Students trace the final years of the Ottoman Empire, the struggle for independence, and Turkish resistance against European imperialism.
United Nations

The United Nations: Challenges and Change

Students consider the record of the United Nations since its founding and examine the UN’s role in the world through an evaluation of three areas of UN work: the Security Council, peacekeeping, and human rights.
U.S. Role in the World

The U.S. Role in a Changing World

Students identify global issues, assess national priorities, and decide for themselves the role the United States should play in the world as they consider the array of economic, political, and social transformations taking place both at home and abroad.
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