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"Where liberty is, there is my country." - Benjamin Franklin
Curated by Michael Miller
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How Geography Explains the United States

How Geography Explains the United States | HMHS History | Scoop.it

Via Emma Lafleur, Seth Dixon
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Mary Patrick Schoettinger's curator insight, April 18, 2013 9:39 AM

There are so many facets to geography and the United States has certainly benefitted from all of them; from location to abundant natural resources to cultural histories. I think this is a good introduction to the topic.

Louis Culotta's comment, April 18, 2013 12:41 PM
I would think that the united states treats Canada a lot better at than in Mexico because of the border issues that exist because of people trying to smuggle drugs or people into America from Mexico continues to be abig problem with the US goverment.
Maegan Connor's curator insight, December 17, 2013 1:48 PM

I think the very last paragraph of this article is one of the truest statements about America that I have ever read.  "There's so much good America can do in the world." This is absolutely true because as the author covered, the U.S. is very good at getting involved in foreign affairs and we are extremely lucky to have the borders that we do.  We're safe on this side of the globe, a world away from the places that have suffered religious and political turmoil for centuries.  

However, the citizens of the U.S. often remain marginally uneducated about out foreign affairs because of the portrayals by the media and the many covered up mistakes that the U.S. has made.  The author of this piece noted America's three major faults as pragmatism, idealism, arrogance and ambivalence.  The United States is ultimately the most conceited country in the world but it's not entirely the fault of its citizens.  U.S. media's job is not necessarily to report the truth but report the fractions of truth that will continue to inspire nationalism, even if that means leaving out the fact that many problems around the world have been increased due to America's participation.

The author of this piece pointed out America's habit of only joining in when it is beneficial for our country, even if it is not in the best interest of the people we are helping.  We offered assistance to the reformers in Egypt but ignored problems raging in Bahrain.  The U.S. has only limited understanding of many of the old, traditional cultures that reign in parts of the Middle East but that does not stop the country from trying to help and often, looking foolish or inciting more unrest.

We have grown to feel very safe in on our side of the planet and regardless of the few attacks that have penetrated America's defense, we still have a very limited world view because there are no threats from our neighbors and it is okay to be whomever you'd like to be (technically speaking because racism, sexism, and homophobia are still rampant in this country) without threats from people around you.  It would be in our country's best interest to educate ourselves on world events and other cultures to be well rounded and less offensive to those who suffer in other regions. The author called America's belief that the problems between Israeli's and Palestinians would resolve with a classic Hollywood happy ending a part of America's problem with idealism and not understanding what it is like to have neighbors who want to dive in during the midst of horrible wars and take whatever they can get their hands on.   Having the borders that it does, it was never a real threat that the U.S. faced. 

I think this article is spot on with the problems in U.S. foreign policy and how geography affects our culture and our ideas of how the world works.

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South Sudan: The World’s Newest Country

South Sudan: The World’s Newest Country | HMHS History | Scoop.it

Via Seth Dixon
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Lauren Stahowiak's curator insight, March 17, 2014 5:08 PM

South Sudan recently gained its independence from Sudan. South Sudan is now home to 10-12 million people and is the 193rd member of the United Nations. However, just because South Sudan became independent from Sudan does not mean it does not no longer carry some of the remaining issues.

Nathan Chasse's curator insight, March 25, 2014 1:26 PM

This infographic gives an idea of why South Sudan seceded from the rest of the country. Decades of civil war preceded the secession, and it is clear the cultural differences between the two areas were a contributing factor. South Sudan is a part of the fertile Sahel, with the majority of its people Christian, while Sudan is mostly desert, with the majority of its people Muslims. South Sudan, as a new nation, faces a number of difficulties. Its new government needed to remain stable to focus on nation building, but war has broken out between the government and a rebel faction. South Sudan, should it become stable again, should work to improve the education of its people, as the infographic explains, since the vote to secede needed symbols rather than words due to only 15% of its people being literate.

Jess Deady's curator insight, May 4, 2014 4:05 PM

South Sudan has separated itself two years ago from the rest of Sudan. Its powers have become acknowledged by other countries and its messages to the outside world are ones of peace.

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Out of Africa – Did the Colonial Powers ever Really Leave?

Out of Africa – Did the Colonial Powers ever Really Leave? | HMHS History | Scoop.it
Africa may have achieved independence, but the old colonial ties are still important as France’s decision to send troops to Mali to fight Islamist extremists shows.

Via Seth Dixon
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Jess Deady's curator insight, May 4, 2014 4:04 PM

Colony powers are still located within Africa. Just because Africa is technically independent doesn't mean that British Colonial power isn't still in place.

Courtney Barrowman's curator insight, September 11, 2014 2:11 PM

unit 4

Felix Ramos Jr.'s curator insight, March 26, 11:08 AM

This article reminds us all of the growth-stunt that colonialism in Africa brought to the continent.  It is not surprising to see that most African countries still depend heavily on their old colonial masters for survival.  People who may casually follow African politics might think that colonialism started with the Berlin Conference and ended in 1990 or so, but one could argue that it hasn't ended due to the urgent dependency African countries still have on their old colonizers.  Africa might be the most beautiful continent in the world but has the worst story of any in the world.

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The Difference between the United Kingdom, Great Britain and England Explained


Via Seth Dixon
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Al Picozzi's curator insight, October 7, 2013 12:10 AM

A great and entertaining way to explain this part of Europe.  I know I have in the past used the terms England, Great Britain and the United Kingdom to all refer to the same thing. It was also amazing to see that people are the same everywhere in that the people in Wales do not consider themselves British, much the same way the people in Sicily consider themselves Sicilain and not Italian. 

Jacob Crowell's curator insight, December 8, 2014 12:09 PM

As an outsider looking in the concept of the United Kingdom is a little confusing. We are taught to view Scotland as its own country, but they are countries within a larger structure. This video makes what would confuse many Americans and condenses it into a clear video that is just about 5 mins.

Kaitlin Young's curator insight, December 12, 2014 4:38 PM

Many people often interchange the UK, Great Britain, and England, but in reality, they all describe different different things. The UK is a country of four countries, each with equal power, including Scotland, Northern Ireland, England, and Wales but they are all considered British citizens.UK is a political term, describing a country. Great Britain is a physical geographical term describing the land mass containing Scotland, Wales, and England.  The British Isles refers to both Great Britain and the Island of Ireland. All of these terms describe different things, being characterized by either political affiliation or geographic characteristics.