Mearsheimer takes a very bleak stance on institutions in international institutions. He states in the opening of his article that his “central conclusion is that institutions have minimal influence on state behavior, and thus hold little promise for promoting stability in the post-Cold War world.” (http://mearsheimer.uchicago.edu/pdfs/A0021.pdf) He spends the majority of his article showing how none of the institutionalist theories work in the real world for using institutions to prevent war and promote peace. He spends almost no part of the article trying to think of ways in which an institution might work. Continue reading Institutions: Anymore Effective Now? – Graham
On October 2013, the National Security Agency of the United States was blamed for intercepting more than 70 million phone calls in France between December 10, 2012 and January 8, 2013. In the process of consulting with France, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said “lots of countries engage in intelligence activities to try to prevent terrorist attacks. This might not sound like a sincere apology. It is an illegal activity that victim states should check on. But in short, major powers all do it and we all know that we do it. Victim States should act on it not solely because of the spying incident itself but also because of the gullible image that victim states will receive when failing to act on it. This is a result of Relative-gain consideration and concern about cheating.
Power relations today are different than they were in 1995. They are different than they were before the collapse of the Soviet Union and will probably shift again in coming years. However, there are main tenets to power relations that remain consistent, although the degree that they affect the international order has shifted. Since Thucydides’ recount of the Peloponnesian War, realpolitik has been prevalent in power relations where stronger nations will aim at maximizing power, according to realist theory. Generally, uncertainty and mistrust have prevented full cooperation; however, today there is a greater connection of the states in the international system which has led to ambiguous obligations which is also preventing full cooperation. Continue reading Impediments to Cooperation: The Realist Doubts on International Organizations – Paige Moeller
Krasner denounces the idea that the importance of sovereignty to national states has been in the decline. He argues that the practice of sovereignty has been adapting to emerging challenges. In fact, he argues that those challenges that are threatening sovereignty are not new at all. One of the challenges, globalization, Krasner argues, has actually strengthened state control and has had the effect of changing the scope of sovereignty, not the political structure itself. Continue reading Doubts on Generalizations on the Scope of State Control–Paul Gee Sung Park
Stephen Krasner quite rightly argues in his article on sovereignty that the challenges states face to their sovereignty today are no different than the challenges they faced in the past. But to say that the notion or idea of sovereignty faces challenges is very different from declaring it dead or in decline.
“A supreme power or authority,” “authority of a state to govern itself or another state,” and “a self-governing state” all emerge on Google search. These definitions of ‘sovereignty’ are relatively synonymous. However, when applying sovereignty to the international arena, the description of a sovereign must be specific to achieve universal understanding.
Stephen Krasner’s “Think Again; Sovereignty” often refutes common misconceptions about sovereignty. He states the international arena have been testing and amending ‘sovereignty’ since the term’s inception. What many people believe to be the extinction of sovereign state due to globalization, Krasner claims to be a part of the continuous change of an international norm.
War makes states. This is the argument author Charles Tilly contends. Tilly states that in its infancy, the sovereign state and state building seemed to have been a result rather than a goal of war and the pursuit of power. The states that remain today are ones that withstood the test of time and were strong enough develop into unified and self-governing entities. Continue reading Is the state obsolete?– Chiara Gabellieri