The struggle to establish full rights for all Americans would lead to a bloody Civil War (1861–1865) that abolished slavery, and a hundred years later the Civil Rights Movement led by Martin Luther King, Jr. With its new-found might and its native idealism, in the twentieth century America took a major role on the world stage as a defender of democracy in World War I, World War II, and the Cold War (which included the Korean and the Vietnam Wars).finally ended legal racial discrimination and set the U. on the course to becoming a genuinely color-blind society. In the twenty-first century, following the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991, the United States has been acting as the world's only superpower, and yet in the face of new challenges like the ambiguities of the War on Terrorism it is unsure of how to define its role in the world.Some viewed it as denying people rights that were enshrined in the Declaration of Independence.
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The young republic was confirmed after it survived British invasion in the War of 1812.
From the beginning, slavery has been the nemesis of the United States.
The European colonization of the Americas began after Christopher Columbus (re)discovered them in 1492. Yet the saga of the United States began with Columbus's European discovery.
There is speculation that Norwegian expeditions to North America led by Leif Eriksson c. In the seventeenth century, many British, Dutch, and German colonists began migrating to North America seeking freedom and economic opportunity.
The 13 colonies which formed the United States were based on different philosophies and religions within Western Civilization.
Puritans settled in New England, Baptists in Rhode Island, Quakers in Pennsylvania, Roman Catholics in Maryland, Dutch Reformed in New York, and Episcopalians in Virginia.
It became involved in police actions and peacekeeping beginning in the 1990s, through United Nations actions in Kosovo, Haiti, Somalia, and Liberia, and NATO actions in Libya.