Handout – Security Basics
What does it mean to be secure?
What causes war?
Why do democracies not seem to fight each other?
Referent Object: the thing that is to be secured
National Security: security of the state
Human Security: security of the individual
Hegemonic war: a bipolar world is most unstable because when two powers have similar levels of
power, one is most likely to challenge the other for hegemony.
Spiral Model: A state is never sure of another state’s intentions. Thus, they must prepare for war even
though they prefer peace. This is the security dilemma – it causes the spiral model of conflict
because each state is disposed to arm itself more heavily than its neighbours.