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Week 8 Introduction to International Politics

by: Caroline Jok

Week 8 Introduction to International Politics PSC 1003

Marketplace > George Washington University > Political Science > PSC 1003 > Week 8 Introduction to International Politics
Caroline Jok
GPA 3.8
Introduction to International Politics
Farrell, H

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About this Document

Professor Henry Farrell GWU Week 8 Introduction to International Politics Grand Strategy
Introduction to International Politics
Farrell, H
Class Notes
gwu, IA, IR, international relations, International politics, grand strategy
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This 6 page Class Notes was uploaded by Caroline Jok on Saturday October 24, 2015. The Class Notes belongs to PSC 1003 at George Washington University taught by Farrell, H in Fall 2015. Since its upload, it has received 14 views. For similar materials see Introduction to International Politics in Political Science at George Washington University.

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Date Created: 10/24/15
20102015 Intro to International Politics PSC 1003 Prof Henry Farrell Deterrence theory Cold War and Strategic Thinking First go back in history 0 the shock of the Cuban Missile Crisis and possibility of world calamity O Helped drive a fundamental rethinking of how the US and USSR should deal with each other 0 Went handinhand with rethinking of fundamentals of strategic theory Thomas Schelling as father of the Cold War armaments as a form of communication The Logic of Deterrence As both the US and USSR sought to come to terms with nuclear weapons they began to think more and more in terms of the logic of deterrence Importance of second strike capabilities to have the capability to strike back 0 Makes each side more likely to trust the other because of Mutually Assured Destruction Threefold aims of actors 0 To display resolve so as not to appear like pushovers tough guy 0 To seek to manipulate the expectations of the other side for strategic and tactical advantage 0 To avoid actual nuclear war These aims did not necessarily sit well with each other 0 Displaying resolve and manipulating expectations might increase risk of war 0 The Cuban missile crisis was to some extent due to the US saying that it was willing to take the unthinkable trying to be a tough guy Waltzian 0 States should feel more secure in a world of Nuclear Weapons Bargaining around Nuclear war Reading Cold war adversaries ended up playing Schelling s chess game Three versions of the game 0 Standard Chess I There is perfect information and a straightforward winlose calculus No bluffing 0 Zero Sum Game not much opportunity for deterrence O Bargaining Chess I The foreseeable risk of disaster makes actors prone to bargain if they have different levels of indifference to risk 0 Disaster never happens but t in uences actor s bargaining strength 0 Brinkmanship chess I Actors may push up to brink and risk disaster to press for gains or show resolve I Genuinely risks disaster in order to force actions from their components 0 US amp Cuban Missile Crisis Schelling wants to move towards bargaining Chess Threats and Credibility What is at stake in bargaining and brinkmanship Risk of breakdown if you are forced to deliver on threat One s future credibility If one is unwilling to make threats in order to protect interests then adversaries and allies may draw conclusions from this If one makes threats and fails to deliver on them likewise If one makes threats and delivers on them likewise Equated to the game of Chicken Book Codes of the Underworld Importance of commitment mechanisms Need to boost your credibility given that many actions may be painful Need to demonstrate resolve to carry out costly actions in the future Commitment mechanisms allow you to commit yourself by making it costlier to refrain from implementing threat than to deliver on it 0 US troops in West Berlin I Their job was to die The cold war as politics This explains the relationship between resolve manipulation and war dynamic O Resolve everyone wants to avoid losing face I If you acquire the reputation of being a pushover your threats are no longer credible Hence incentives to protect reputation 0 Manipulation Everyone wants to avoid war I The incentive to work out a set of common understandings about what does and what does not constitute aggressive action 0 War Dynamic Everyone still faces the temptation to make gains through bluffing about one s resolve I This makes mistakes more likely Implicit Goal of Schelling s theory Schelling thinks of weapons as ways to communicating To turn deterrence into a system of communication that could manage the pressures and prevent escalation into all out nuclear war This often meant allowing actors to retain credibility by clarifying when they had to display resolve and when not 0 Ambiguity of tactical nuclear weapons Much of the action of the Cold war was in what never happened situations where actors did not have to confront each other with resultant risks Why don t we use battlefield tactical nuke Because it s not clear communication but it s still a nuclear weapon Aka Backpack nukes Schelling and Costly Communication Losing 20000 troops in order to Save face in South Korea was completely worth it Creating shared expectations over intervention Berlin vs Hungary Unwillingness to waste nukes on any old crisis 0 Save them as a message of utmost seriousness Choosing targets near your enemy s territory as a form of signaling don t escalate or else Choosing particular cities to bomb in the case of nuclear war in order to prevent it from escalating into allout con agration 0 If you do decide to use nuclear weapons you should ensure that your message isn t ambiguous Introduction to International Politics 22102015 Professor Henry Farrell Grand Strategy What is a Grand Strategy Definitional Questions 0 Best thought of as a broad understanding of what a country needs to do in order to maintain its security Two main components 0 Goals concrete understandings of the specific objectives the state needs to meet 0 Means understandings regarding the best way to achieve those goals Famous Telegram during WW2 analyzing the trend of RussiaSoviet union and outlining a broad strategy to follow George Kennan US embassy in Moscow Grand strategy as an Elite Consensus Shared consensus among FP decisionmakers O A state s grand strategy under this account is it is foreign policy elite s theory about how to produce national security I Elite Do you want to include columnist and national news papers What about major international relation professors Where do you stop I This week Benghazi Hearings 0 Good for identifying elements of continuity and commonality 0 May systematically underplay divergences and differences Grand Strategy as Specific Policy Guidelines US periodically produces National Security Strategy documents 0 Provides an overview of the US strategic stance towards the world 0 But are not the product of a conscious exercise in long term planning I may be patchy and erratic Why does the US need a grand strategy Other countries have serious debates over national strategy but do not usually have a slope equivalent of the national security strategy document 0 Helps coordinate bureaucracy O Helps coordinate expectations with allies O Helps communicate intentions to rest of the world including enemies Coordinating bureaucracy A difficult task especially in a complex system such as the united states different organizations with different bureaucratic goals 0 Difficult task especially in a complex situation national security strategy doesn t provide specifics Communicate to Outside World US wants to in uence expectations of a variety of actors 0 including those which are hostile to it NSS can 0 Communicate broad understandings about priorities and hence minimize frictions O Deter behavior not in the US interest by making credible threats Different Grand Strategies Deep Engagement Selective Engagement 0 Primacy 0 International Institutionalism Neo Isolationism Cooperative Security Deep Engagement Selective Bottom lines 0 Preserve key alliances 0 Maintain forward deployment 0 Maintain US military and economic leadership Maj or Powers Retain key alliances in Europe and Asia 0 Some believe that a hegemon would threaten US military capabilities others do now I This logic was more important during the Cold War than Now 0 War security Competition between other major powers is dangerous because I The US could get drawn in I Competition could fuel proliferation J apan south Korea etc I Competitions and war are bad for tradeprosperity Proliferation 0 Proliferation optimist are too starryeyed 0 Do not like the thought of proliferation by the two rogue states I It is more dangerous even though the probability of use may be low terrorists are even more worrisome O Maintains US leadership Helps maintain the open global economy by reducing insecurity and competition Improves trade deals and helps maintain the US dollar as the reserve CUI39I39CIICY


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