Today, the Virgin Islands are politically split between the British and the Americans - the eastern islands form the British Virgin Islands and the western islands form the Virgin Islands of the United States. The British Virgin Islands is an overseas territory of the United Kingdom comprising Tortola, Virgin Gorda, Jost Van Dyke and Anegada. The Virgin Islands that comprise the U.S. territory are run by an elected governor. The territory is under the jurisdiction of the president of the United States. While they are U.S. citizens, Virgin Islanders cannot vote in United States presidential election and cannot elect voting members of Congress. They do have one elected representative in the U.S. House of Representatives who can vote in congressional committees but not in the House itself.
Other so-called “humanitarian interventions” were centered in the Balkan region of Europe, after the 1992 breakup of the multiethnic federation of Yugoslavia. The U.S. watched for three years as Serb forces killed Muslim civilians in Bosnia, before its launched decisive bombing raids in 1995. Even then, it never intervened to stop atrocities by Croatian forces against Muslim and Serb civilians, because those forces were aided by the U.S. In 1999, the U.S. bombed Serbia to force President Slobodan Milosevic to withdraw forces from the ethnic Albanian province of Kosovo, which was torn a brutal ethnic war. The bombing intensified Serbian expulsions and killings of Albanian civilians from Kosovo, and caused the deaths of thousands of Serbian civilians, even in cities that had voted strongly against Milosevic. When a NATO occupation force enabled Albanians to move back, U.S. forces did little or nothing to prevent similar atrocities against Serb and other non-Albanian civilians. The U.S. was viewed as a biased player, even by the Serbian democratic opposition that overthrew Milosevic the following year.
Borah and American Foreign Policy
Professor Lieven has provided a fair-minded and generous assessment of my book and I would like to thank him for it. His studies of the Russian monarchy and Russian foreign policy in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries were a major influence in shaping my views on the role of monarchy in European diplomacy and it is gratifying that he has found merit in my own contribution to the debate.
Economic Factors of American Foreign Policy (1890-1914)
One way to answer this question is to think counter-factually. Could Nicholas II have got away with shifting foreign policy decisively away from the French alliance and towards agreement with Germany? Such a policy would undoubtedly have further isolated the regime from educated society, in which Germany was disliked and the French alliance was popular. A shift would have been opposed by most diplomatic and military leaders. The diplomats saw the French alliance as an essential source of leverage in a continent overshadowed by German power. The generals viewed it as the foundation of Russian security in the event of war. A pro-slav and pro-entente foreign policy was one plank in Stolypin's effort to build bridges to educated society after 1906. But the Russian army was basically loyal and apolitical. The public cared far more about internal than foreign policy in peacetime. Able diplomats and politicians could have been found who would have supported a rapprochement with Germany.
Early Twentieth Century U.S. Foreign Policy, 1901-1941
Therefore it seems plausible to argue, especially before 1905 but probably even afterwards, that Nicholas could have shifted Russian foreign policy back towards Germany for a time at least and survived. Certainly he could have tried to do so. This was after all a man who obstinately refused to grant constitutional concessions to public opinion and in the process, by 1916, had isolated himself not just from society but also from the majority of his own leading civil and military officials. Convinced that autocracy was the only possible system of government capable of avoiding social revolution and the empire's disintegration, Nicholas clung to this belief in the face of enormous pressure to change his mind. A major shift in foreign policy would certainly not have required more obstinacy or moral courage than this.
Foreign Policy, 1890-1914” at 4 p.m
Where foreign policy was concerned, however, a monarch could hope to manage the volume of paper and the officials, and might well feel himself competent to play a leading role. Is Roderick McClean right therefore to assert that Nicholas II was the key figure in the making of Russian foreign policy, and specifically policy towards Germany?