Last Updated 12 May 2020

International relations theories

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Theory of political realism employs a number of categories among which nation state, national interest, power, sovereignity, etc. According to this theory states exist in international system approximating state of anarchy. Under this condition there are no other means to insure security than accumulate resourses convertable into means of pressure on the rebellious surrounding. The projection of power – the essential category to Political realism, is the only definite measure to achieve a desired goal.

As system is set off to be insecure the ultimate goal to every state is the maximum possible degree of security, in other words, certainty of the other state or group of state being in no position to attack the state either alone or in coalition. The means to this end are of diverse nature but what unites them is the conception of “power’ as central to the understanding “Real Politik”. The apologist of realism Gans Morgenthau has not consicely defined the notion of “Power”, although circumscribed the kinds of Power: military, economic, diplomatique, spiritual (ideological).

Nowdays, structuralism contributed to the emergence of one more kind: structural power. The main feature of the concept is that every other kind of power is tributary with regard to military one and serves its end – the degree to which the particular, say, economic power may enhance military capabilities in time of war is crucial to the idea of convertability of the powers into military might. The major criterion of structurizing the anarchic, by nature, international system was the relative military strength of the states, there being Superpowers, Great States, regional states, middle and small states.

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Within political realism the great importance was attributed to the theory of Alliances for it was only alliances that might redress the interantional Power Balance in favor of several, say, Great States when encountered by one Superstate. The post-Westphalian international system was a time for employing the principles of Real Politik when there emerged a number of comparable in power European states which contended the right to moderate the others.

The notion of ‘nation state’ and ‘national interest’ is inseparable from the doctrine of realism: nation are deemed as clearly apprehendind so called ‘National interest’ which is ultimately of interantional implication and compounded as theoretical concept of a set of theorems: to strive for the maximum level of security, to pursuit the extinction or lavishing and debasement of the rival state, to support the weak state in its struggle with the strong one lest it may become even stronger etc.

Apprehending the national interest states consciously project power to achieve a uniform or single goal: to accrue to the level to ones security at the same time imparing the security of the others for security as such is limited – this general postulate was utilized by a theory of Zero Sum Game – a tributary one as to the mainstream realism within which it has developed.

Acoording to the realism, states are but black pool balls – uniform with regard to their strife, composite and solid – the realism did not mind the internal condition of states or their parties and popular claims because the Imperative of interntional system disciplined every participant so as to shut the internal problems from the professional suviving in the anarchy milleu and, yielding to the forces of the ‘survival game’, they bounce and combinate anew within the anarchy framework of international system.

The concept of Liberalism is better seen in contrast with the before mentioned one. In the center of Liberal world stands ‘laissez-faire’ state of the Great Britain’s in the middle of 19st. kind - state prosperious by its trade and mighty enough to protect its lawfull economic interests anywhere in the world by military intervention. The state in liberalism is not immune to internal issues intrusion, it rather balances the needs for internal economic growth with its current foreign policy, the latter is no more an end in itself but rather an instrument to foster internal development.

The concept of Free Trade is intrinsic with liberalism: free trade may contribute any participant and is to be recognized as superior structurizing and orginizing power within this concept. A war has only minor implication on international life – it is reduced to a mere mean of restoring safety of trade routs. The safety of international trade routs and trade turnover determines the economic, thus, social consistency of ‘laissez-faire’ states; they seem to avoid war for the dramatic consequences it may end in.

The safety of the state is virtually equated to the safety of industry and trade routs for suuden delays there might be in shipping or consumption of the export goods due to hostilities are disastrous in effect. This contributes to the major inference of Liberalism that war as being trade impediment is no good, all industrial and trading states should cooperate with a view to prevent the effects of war or if, has started, to localize it to the minimum range to protect main trade zones.

Thus, the natural industrious bent in peoples may provide an effective instrument to eradicate war as such or to swiftly get over with every sparkle of hostilities through interantional military cooperation. The gendered approach to international relations may exist only as a element to the General Critical Theory or Postmodernism. The said theory as such may not be labelled as classical theory, not to say, rival Realism or Liberalism in the domain of methodological apparatus’s thoroughness. It is rather a device to denounce the claimes of the said to as timed or “up-to-date”.

What this concept can successfully do is reveal a serious breaches in the approaches of the classical concepts thus disparaging the onthlogical basis of theirs The failure of Realism and Liberalism to adress specific issues of gender, race, generation and general stiffness of their methodology which seems to be not enough spacious to embrace the new terms and apprpriate them to the old in a way to avoid dissonance are being gradually heeded through thus detected breaches and bye-the-bye address though partially by the Critical Theory.

In the domain of international politics Conservative Party always seemed to adhere to the Real Politik consept. Now that the second Super Power has gone USA has got lucky opportunity to indulge into unrestricted interventions throughout the globe when pursuing particular goal. Although, USA are to be conscious of a great responsibility they have as a single world’s affair moderator.

Senator Kerry when addressing the international legitimization of the war in Iraq clearly demonstrated a refined Liberal vision. The biggest faulter was a failure to draw the international community’s cooperative potential as stated by him pointed at the World Governance, neo-liberal model of cooperative administering of the international issues with a great emphasize upon non-governmental actors and multinational, to dimly twinkle amid his undistinct as to international affairs views.

In the course of debates he criticques the administration’s universal approach as to the war with terrorism for its being very lofty and populist thus breeding entrenched whithin international community frights of USA imposing rigid and reactionary power regime provoking the acts of retaliation from the opressed and resignating groups culturally and politically biased towadrds USA and their self-imposing bearence.

The main issue here is that those acts of retaliation from sneak non-governmental, say, Postmodernismt enemies are probable to fall upon the USA former allies by the Cold War. The intricate and valuable web of military and political unions and coalitions are now susceptible of perishing to substantially diminish the USA structural power – the power to exert the influence on the different levels whithin the structure of international relation system: political, cultural, economical, diplomatic etc.

and what makes it real structural power – to mobilise other agents and shares of their potentials. It was the plead for more reasonable way of administration of those resourses lest be left in the inferior to that prior to real politik measures emplementation position that I saw in senator Kerry speeches and, of course, struggle for the public’s votes was there.

I think its rather hard to tell whether Kerry bends towards neo-Liberal concept but for sure he is right to scoff the ground on which Bush seems to find it appropriate to fight ultimately asymmetric threats with conventional military means suited to fight states rather then clandestine and freemason-like secret organisations though temporaly identified with rebellous states, that is to say to scoff the methods of Realism and have a solid ground on it.

The issue who does emplement more of the gender-heed approach or suits better for the Critical theory cause is easily addressed. Kerry does. Well, what more to say about the men who approves homosexual marriages with regard to gender-sensitive approach or innovative critical of the old stiffen concepts Critical thoery approach. Nothing more. That will suffice. The results of the presidential elections in the USA will have far ranging impact upon the Arab world in whole, Gulf region in particular, set aside Europe.

I think, Great Britain will further cooperate with USA in military aspects whoever be the next president. The position of the current Prime Minister Tiny Blair is unlikely to have staggered if Kerry won – the latter badly needs wide international participation in Iraqi reconstruction and improving the image of USA. The victory of Bush, on the other hand, would facilitate USA-Russia relations around the axis of antiterrorists war and nuclear weapons nonproliferation issue.

In the case with Kerry, I think his stance towards Putin is rather prejudiced but it is characteristic of Democratic party presidents who advocated the democracy in Russia for all times. The critical importance is placed on USA – EU relations in the case of Kerry’s victory: EU may seek instutionalised cooperation with new president of USA in the realm of anti-terrorisms particular actions as, for example, banks responsibility, money-laundering, information sharing and cooperative focused anti-terrorist campaigns.

The critical shifts may occur in Islam state, like Indonesia and Pakistan who hold the radicals doen but may need a qualified support. The perspectives of East European republics, foremost Ukraine might look brighter in eventual NATO participation in the wake of authoritarian tendencies in Russia and the position of Kerry.

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