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© 2010 Joshua S. Goldstein and Jon C. Pevehouse Realist Theories International Relations 9/e Goldstein and Pevehouse © 2010 Joshua S. Goldstein and Jon.

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Presentation on theme: "© 2010 Joshua S. Goldstein and Jon C. Pevehouse Realist Theories International Relations 9/e Goldstein and Pevehouse © 2010 Joshua S. Goldstein and Jon."— Presentation transcript:

1 © 2010 Joshua S. Goldstein and Jon C. Pevehouse Realist Theories International Relations 9/e Goldstein and Pevehouse © 2010 Joshua S. Goldstein and Jon C. Pevehouse CHAPTER TWO

2 © 2010 Joshua S. Goldstein and Jon C. Pevehouse Realism Realism’s foundation is the principle of dominance. –School of thought that explains international relations in terms of power. The exercise of power by states toward each other is sometimes called realpolitik, or just power politics.

3 © 2010 Joshua S. Goldstein and Jon C. Pevehouse Realism Realism developed in reaction to a liberal tradition that realists called idealism. –Idealism emphasizes international law, morality, and international organizations, rather than power alone, as key influences on international events. –Belief that human nature is basically good. –Particularly active between WWI and WWII League of Nations –Structure proved helpless to stop German, Italian, and Japanese aggression. Since WWII, realists have blamed idealists for looking too much at how the world ought to be rather than how it really is.

4 © 2010 Joshua S. Goldstein and Jon C. Pevehouse Realist Tradition Realists tend to treat political power as separate from, and predominant over: –morality, –ideology, –and other social and economic aspects of life. States pursue their own interests in an international system of sovereign states without a central authority. o Sun TzuSun Tzu o ThucydidesThucydides o Hobbes o MorgenthauMorgenthau

5 © 2010 Joshua S. Goldstein and Jon C. Pevehouse Table 2.1

6 © 2010 Joshua S. Goldstein and Jon C. Pevehouse Power Power is a central concept in international relations. It is the central concept for realists. Difficult to measure. © 2010 Joshua S. Goldstein and Jon C. Pevehouse

7 Defining Power Often defined as the ability to get another actor to do what it would not otherwise have done (or vice versa). If actors get their way a lot, they must be powerful. Power is not influence itself, but the ability or potential to influence others. –Based on specific (tangible and intangible) characteristics or possessions of states Sizes, levels of income, and armed forces –Capability: Easier to measure than influence and less circular in logic

8 © 2010 Joshua S. Goldstein and Jon C. Pevehouse Defining Power The single indicator of a state’s power may be its total GDP (gross domestic product) –Combines overall size, technological level, and wealth –At best, a rough indicator –A state’s tangible capabilities (including military forces) represent material power. Power also depends on nonmaterial elements. –National will, diplomatic skill, popular support for government (legitimacy), and so forth Power can only explain so much. Real-world IR depends on many other elements, including accidents or luck. Relational concept: Relative power is the ratio of the power that two states can bring to bear against each other.

9 © 2010 Joshua S. Goldstein and Jon C. Pevehouse Estimating Power The logic of power suggests: –The more powerful state will generally prevail. –Estimates of the power of two antagonists should help explain the outcome. –U.S. and Iraq Implications of the outcome -- GDP does not always predict who will win the war

10 © 2010 Joshua S. Goldstein and Jon C. Pevehouse Elements of Power State power is a mix of many ingredients. –Natural resources, industrial capacity, moral legitimacy, military preparedness, and popular support of government Long-term elements of power –Total GDP, population, territory, geography, and natural resources –Less tangible long-term elements of power include political culture, patriotism, education of the population, and strength of the scientific and technological base. –Credibility of its commitments (reputation for keeping word) –Ability of one state’s culture and values to consistently shape the thinking of other states (power of ideas)

11 © 2010 Joshua S. Goldstein and Jon C. Pevehouse Elements of Power Capabilities that allow actors to exercise influence in the short term: –Military forces –Military-industrial complex –Quality of the state’s bureaucracy –Less tangible: Support and legitimacy that an actor commands in the short term from constituents and allies –Loyalty of a nation’s army and politicians to its leader Trade-offs among possible capabilities always exist. –To the extent that one element of power can be converted into another, it is fungible. Money is the most fungible. Realists tend to see military force as the most important element of national power in the short term.

12 © 2010 Joshua S. Goldstein and Jon C. Pevehouse Elements of Power Morality –States have long clothed their actions, however aggressive, in rhetoric about their peaceful and defensive intentions. Geopolitics –States increase their power to the extent that they can use geography to enhance their military capabilities. –Location, location, location –Two-front problem: Germany and Russia –Insular: Britain and United States –In general, power declines as a function of distance from a home state.

13 © 2010 Joshua S. Goldstein and Jon C. Pevehouse The International System States interact within a set of long- established “rules of the game” governing what is considered a state and how states treat each other. Together these rules shape the international system.

14 © 2010 Joshua S. Goldstein and Jon C. Pevehouse Anarchy and Sovereignty Realists believe the international system exists in a state of anarchy. –Term implies the lack of a central government that can enforce rules. –World government as a solution? –Others suggest international organizations and agreements. Despite anarchy, the international system is far from chaotic. –Great majority of state interactions closely adhere to norms of behavior

15 © 2010 Joshua S. Goldstein and Jon C. Pevehouse Anarchy and Sovereignty Sovereignty: A government has the right, in principle, to do whatever it wants in its own territory. Lack of a “world police” to punish states if they break an agreement makes enforcement of international agreements difficult. –North Korea and its nuclear facilities In practice, most states have a harder and harder time warding off interference in their affairs.

16 © 2010 Joshua S. Goldstein and Jon C. Pevehouse Anarchy and Sovereignty Respect for the territorial integrity of all states, within recognized borders, is an important principle of IR. –Impact of information revolution/information economies and the territorial state system States and norms of diplomacy Security dilemma –A situation in which states’ actions taken to ensure their own security threaten the security of other states. Arms race Negative consequence of anarchy in the international system

17 © 2010 Joshua S. Goldstein and Jon C. Pevehouse Balance of Power Refers to the general concept of one or more states’ power being used to balance that of another state or group of states. Balance of power can refer to: –Any ratio of power capabilities between states or alliances, or –It can mean only a relatively equal ratio. –Alternatively, it can refer to the process by which counterbalancing coalitions have repeatedly formed in history to prevent one state from conquering an entire region.

18 © 2010 Joshua S. Goldstein and Jon C. Pevehouse Great Powers and Middle Powers The most powerful states in the system exert most of the influence on international events and therefore get the most attention from IR scholars. –Handful of states possess the majority of the world’s power resources.

19 © 2010 Joshua S. Goldstein and Jon C. Pevehouse Great Powers and Middle Powers Great powers are generally considered the half- dozen or so most powerful states. –Until the past century, the club was exclusively European. –Defined generally as states that can be defeated militarily only by another great power. –Generally have the world’s strongest military forces and the strongest economies U.S., China, Russia, Japan, Germany, France, and Britain U.S. the world’s only superpower China the world’s largest population, rapid economic growth and a large military, with a credible nuclear arsenal

20 © 2010 Joshua S. Goldstein and Jon C. Pevehouse Figure 2.1

21 © 2010 Joshua S. Goldstein and Jon C. Pevehouse Figure 2.2

22 © 2010 Joshua S. Goldstein and Jon C. Pevehouse Great Powers and Middle Powers Middle powers –Rank somewhat below the great powers –Some are large but not highly industrialized –Others may be small with specialized capabilities –Examples: midsized countries such as Canada, Italy, Spain, the Netherlands, Poland, Ukraine, South Korea, and Australia, or larger or influential countries in the global South such as India, Indonesia, Brazil, Argentina, Mexico, Nigeria, South Africa, Israel, Turkey, Iran, and Pakistan

23 © 2010 Joshua S. Goldstein and Jon C. Pevehouse The Great-Power System, Most powerful states in 16 th -century Europe were Britain, France, Austria-Hungary, and Spain. –Ottoman Empire –Hapsburgs –Impact of industrialization –Napoleonic Wars –Congress of Vienna (1815) –Concert of Europe –UN Security Council –WW I –WW II and after

24 © 2010 Joshua S. Goldstein and Jon C. Pevehouse Alliances An alliance is a coalition of states that coordinate their actions to accomplish some end –Most are formalized in written treaties –Concern a common threat and related issues of international security –Endure across a range of issues and a period of time

25 © 2010 Joshua S. Goldstein and Jon C. Pevehouse Purposes of Alliances Augmenting their members’ power –By pooling capabilities, two or more states can exert greater leverage in their bargaining with other states. –For smaller states, alliances can be their most important power element. –But alliances can change quickly and decisively. –Most form in response to a perceived threat. Alliance cohesion –The ease with which the members hold together an alliance –Tends to be high when national interests converge and when cooperation within the alliance becomes institutionalized and habitual. Burden sharing –Who bears the cost of the alliance

26 © 2010 Joshua S. Goldstein and Jon C. Pevehouse NATO NATO = North Atlantic Treaty Organization One of the most important formal alliances –Encompasses Western Europe and North America –Founded in 1949 to oppose and deter Soviet power in Europe –Countered by the Warsaw Pact (1955); disbanded in 1991 –First use of force by NATO was in Bosnia in 1994 in support of the UN mission there. European Union formed its own rapid deployment force, outside NATO. Biggest issue for NATO is its recent and eastward expansion, beyond the East-West Cold War dividing line. –Russian opposition

27 © 2010 Joshua S. Goldstein and Jon C. Pevehouse Figure 2.5

28 © 2010 Joshua S. Goldstein and Jon C. Pevehouse Other Alliances U.S.-Japanese Security Treaty –U.S. maintains nearly 50,000 troops in Japan. –Japan pays the U.S. several billion dollars annually to offset about half the cost of maintaining these troops. –Created in 1951 against the potential Soviet threat to Japan. –Asymmetrical in nature U.S. has alliances with other states: South Korea and Australia De facto allies of the U.S.: those with whom we collaborate closely – Israel CIS – Commonwealth of Independent States –In 2008, Georgia declared it would withdraw from the CIS, effective August 2010, over its conflict with Russia

29 © 2010 Joshua S. Goldstein and Jon C. Pevehouse Regional Alignments In the global South, many states joined a nonaligned movement during the Cold War. –Stood apart from the U.S.-Soviet rivalry –Led by India and Yugoslavia Undermined by the membership of Cuba Organization of African Unity –NGO that reformed as the African Union (AU) –Stronger organization with a continent-wide parliament, central bank, and court.

30 © 2010 Joshua S. Goldstein and Jon C. Pevehouse Regional Alignments China loosely aligned with Pakistan in opposition to India (which was aligned with the Soviet Union). –Relationships with India warmed after the Cold War ended. Middle East: General anti-Israel alignment of the Arab countries for decades –Broke down in 1978 as Egypt and Jordan made peace with Israel –Israel and war with Hezbollah and Hamas –Israel and Turkey formed a close military alliance –Israel largest recipient of U.S. foreign aid –Egypt –Iran –Bush administration: emphasis on spreading democracy

31 © 2010 Joshua S. Goldstein and Jon C. Pevehouse Figure 2.6

32 © 2010 Joshua S. Goldstein and Jon C. Pevehouse Strategy: Statecraft Deterrence –Uses a threat to punish another actor if it takes a certain negative action. Compellence –Refers to the use of force to make another actor take some action (rather than refrain from taking an action). Escalation –A reciprocal process in which two (or more) states build up military capabilities in response to each other.

33 © 2010 Joshua S. Goldstein and Jon C. Pevehouse The Prisoner’s Dilemma Game theory –Branch of mathematics concerned with predicting bargaining outcomes. –Game is a setting in which two or more players choose among alternative moves, once or repeatedly. –Each combination of moves (by all players) results in a set of payoffs (utility) to each player. –Game theory aims to deduce likely outcomes given the players’ preferences and the possible moves open to them. Game theory first used in IR in the 1950s and 1960s –Focus on U.S./Soviet relations –Numb3rsNumb3rs

34 © 2010 Joshua S. Goldstein and Jon C. Pevehouse The Prisoner’s Dilemma Zero-sum games versus non-zero-sum games Prisoner’s Dilemma (PD) –Captures the kind of collective goods problem common to IR –All players make choices that in the end make them all worse off than under a different set of moves. –They could all do better, but as individual rational actors they are unable to achieve this outcome. –Bank robber story –IR example: the arms race

35 © 2010 Joshua S. Goldstein and Jon C. Pevehouse The Prisoner’s Dilemma Other games: –Chicken and the Cuban Missile Crisis –Kennedy, some argue, “won” by seeming ready to risk nuclear war if Soviet Premier Khrushchev did not back down and remove Soviet missiles from Cuba. –There are alternative explanations of the outcome as well.


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