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date: 27 January 2022

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter contends that the Western Hemisphere is not only key to the development of U.S. national security but also remains of great importance today. Quite simply, U.S. national security interests grew firstly within their own “neighborhood,” and those interests continue to be both important and complex into the present day. Crucially, this is where national security threats come into direct contact with the U.S. homeland. Understanding this history and these interactive dynamics is important to the analysis of contemporary national security questions in the Western Hemisphere. The chapter focuses on key issues that are deeply intertwined: economics and trade; democracy, development, and human rights; drugs and transnational threats; and homeland security and homeland defense.

Keywords: Western Hemisphere, history, transnational threats, drugs, economic openness, democracy, human rights

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