Presidents and their foreign policies are constantly subjected to moral judgements, but to what extent do ethical considerations actually guide policymaking? To answer this question, renowned international relations scholar Joseph S. Nye assessed the foreign policies of each United States president from FDR to Trump on three ethical dimensions—their intentions, the means they used, and the consequences of their decision—and joins Juliet Sorensen for a conversation on his findings. What ethical quandaries did these presidents face, and could the reemergence of a great power rivalry and a host of complex, transnational threats complicate these questions for whoever wins the 2020 election?
Copies of Joseph S. Nye Jr.’s latest book, Do Morals Matter? Presidents and Foreign Policy from FDR to Trump will be available for purchase and signing from the Book Cellar.