The United States of America was founded by 13 colonies along the Atlantic Coast. They proclaimed themselves as states on July 4, 1776 through the Declaration of Independence. The United States of America lies between the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans and is bordered by Canada on the north and Mexico to the south. The USA is a constitutional federal republic consisting of fifty states and a federal district. The US covers a total area of 9.6 million acres and is the third largest country in the world behind Russia and Canada. The US economy is also the largest national economy of the world with a GDP (Gross Domestic Product) of over US$ 13 trillion.
In the years after World War II, the United States played a significant role in the global affairs especially through the newly formed United Nations and North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO). The United States promoted democracy and open trade, and promised $17,000 million under the "Marshall Plan" to rebuild Western Europe.
In the 19th century, disputes between the agrarian South and the industrial North led to the American Civil War in the 1860s. The victory of the North led to the end of the slavery in the United States. Today, the USA is the leading political and economic force of the world.
In the 1980s the conservatives of the USA promoted limited government, advocated tax cuts for economic growth, strong anti crime measures and national defense. Republican Governor of California Ronald Regan won the trust of the people and was elected President for two terms. In 1992, the Americans elected Arkansas Governor Bill Clinton who advocated issues of youth and change. After Bill Clinton George W. Bush won the presidential elections but his term was marked with great controversy especially during with the September 11 attack on the twin towers.