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Govt 132: Chapter 2

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Govt 132: Chapter 2 GOVT 132

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Chapter 2 notes
Introduction to International Politics
Eric Shiraev
Class Notes
GOVT, 132, Introduction, to, International, Policy
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This 5 page Class Notes was uploaded by Ghost21 on Saturday September 17, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to GOVT 132 at George Mason University taught by Eric Shiraev in Fall 2016. Since its upload, it has received 3 views.


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Date Created: 09/17/16
Govt 132—Introduction to International Policy Dr. Eric Shiraev International Relations Chapter 2 The Realist Perspective [Key Actors in Foreign Policy] -Sovereign Governments -IGOs -NGOs [Realism] -approach to international relations focuses on countries, their interests, balance of power, and structure of international relations -(according to realism) only states can be players in international relations -defend interests, protect their resources, create alliances, react to outside threats, and impose will on others (Walt 1987) -realists believe international relations explained by balance of power -no international order is perfect and lasts forever Logic of Realism Anarchy natural state of affairs among statesSovereign states trying to survive in anarchy, act in self- interest to maximize own powerAvoid war of all against all, states balance off one another, use diplomacy and build alliances and coalitionsInternational order emerges from state’s self-interested actionsWithin order, states seek greater security for themselves [Understanding Power in International Relations] -changes over the centuries: 1. size and strength of regular armies 2. economic and financial indicators (18 + 19 century) 3. men and women, steel produced, military--battleships, submarines, tanks (20 century) 4. significance of nonmilitary aspects of power economic competition between capitalist and communist systems (Cold War) [Ideas: The Realist Tradition] -Embodiments of power: military strength geographic locations economic resources population size economic might financial strength national solidarity effective diplomacy symbols [International Order] -Nonrealistic approach—power distributed among states exist in three types: unipolar bipolar multipolar Unipolar -only one center of power or influence -after collapse of Soviet Union (1991) Russia became unipolar; could not challenge the US military Bipolar -two center of power or influence -after WW2 US and Soviet Union dominated Multipolar -multiple centers of power or influence -until end of WW2 most of world was multipolar [NGOs] -ECPAT International: global network of organizations working for eliminations of child slavery, prostitution, etc [Why Study International Relations] -Weapons of Mass Destruction -poverty -overpopulation and migration problems -human rights -Instability violence and war -finding path to peace and economic improvement -environmental problems [International Order and Politics] -page 50 Figure 2-2 best visual of stages of the order [How we Study International Relations] -Governmental and NGO reports -experimental methods -eyewitness sources -surveys -communications -intelligence [Realpolitik] -actions of states based on power-related consideration labeled ‘power politics’ Rules of Engagement -sovereign’s geographical location, history, ideology, political regime, or economic condition -two rules: chances of success significantly higher when state has substantial military and economic advantage state should not make too many commitments that constrain freedom of action [Causes of War] -war result of someone’s interests and ambitions; interconnected developments -democracy being exported from one country to another US military using force to build democratic states in Afghanistan and Iraq. Failed Japan and Germany lost WW2 and under US military force to build democratic states. Success -possibilities of reasons why democracy works or does not: Japan and Germany hemigynous within their own countries Afghanistan and Iraq have many tribes, customs and cultures in each single sovereign [International Order and War] -page 61 figure 2-3 provides diagram of the cycle of the steps that cause war Types of Responses to the Use of Force -Forceful: threat to balance of power is obvious, and can be removed -Ambivalent: threat is serious, but outcome of war uncertain -indifferent: war does not affect directly the state’s interests and stake of involvement may be high Probability of War -Defensive realists: argue anarchy breeds uncertainty, encourages states to stay away from violence and demonstrate self-restraint -Offensive realists: same situation of anarchy; uncertainty forces stronger states to maximize their power at all times [Nonmilitary Responses] -economic incentives -direct economic help -sanctions (typically used as punishment from one state to another) [Key Terms] Realism—approach to international relations focusing on states and their interests, balance of power; structure of international relations Power—state’s ability to protect own security and impose will on other states Anarchy—(realist’s perspective) absence of authority International system—checks and balances among state when they exercise their power to promote their interests Realpolitik—policy based on realist assumptions that foundation of a nation’s security is power and the threat of its use Gross domestic product(GDP)—total market value of all goods and services produced within borders of a national during specified period Hegemony—state’s overwhelming power in relation to other states Cold War (1946-89)—state of tension and competition between the Soviet Union and its allies on one side and the Western world on other Neorealism (structural realism)—theory that each state seeks secure place in international system according to the distribution of power Multipolar order—world of multiple centers of power or influence Bipolar order—world organization based on two centers of power or influence Unipolar order—world only one center of power or influence Predator state—state conducting policies with disregard for international rules and turning violent actions in international arena


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