POLD89H3 Lecture Notes - Security Dilemma, Societal Security, World Politics

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15 Apr 2012

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(New) Global Security Dilemma
An ideal: world government equals no anarchy in international politics and no security dilemma
States are secure (and secured) when their inter-state relations are based on balance of power, i.e. the
states are more or less equal powerful and, therefore, feel secure. Hence, they are less willing to go to
war with others.
The security dilemma = paradox: a state tries making itself more secure and ends up being less secure.
This is so, for its actions will make other state(s) more likely to take similar steps
For example, India feels threatened by Pakistan and tries to build aircraft carriers so it can project force.
Pakistan, in turn, concludes that Indian aircraft carriers will make it less secure. This starts an arms race.
Conflict between the two is more likely. John H. Herz, “Idealist Internationalism and Security Dilemma”,
World Politics, Vol. 2(1950), p.157-158;
In the “traditional” or REALIST view, security dilemma inter-state level. However
A societal security dilemma might exist when the actions of society A that tries to increase its security ,
by strengthening its own identity, causes a reaction in society B. As a result, society A decreases its own
societal security by weakening its own identity. Paul Roe, “The Societal Security Dilemma”, Copenhagen
Peace Research Institute Working Papers, June 1996.
This principle aims not only to promote cooperative interaction between states, but also peaceful
coexistence between cultural groups and civilizations. A new classification of global security comprises
five dimensions of security
1. Human
2. Environmental
3. National
4. Transnational
5. transcultural security
The idea of five dimensional security is based on justice, which is treated as prerequisite and is based on
the multi-sum security principle (not on zero-sum)
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"In a globalized world, security can no longer be thought of as a zero-sum game involving states alone.
Global security, instead, has five dimensions that include human, environmental, national, transnational,
and transcultural security, and, therefore, global security and the security of any state or culture cannot
be achieved without good governance at all levels that guarantees security through justice for all
individuals, states, and cultures." Nayef Al-Rodhan THE FIVE DIMENSIONS OF GLOBAL SECURITY:
Proposal for a Multi-sum Security Principle
A region of the international system become more secure when there is a regional security
arrangement. For in the transatlantic region, NATO is a regional security organization. In the Asia-Pacific
region there is no such arrangement; hence, the region “by nature” is more prone to conflict.
For example,
Energy security dilemma
Global security dilemma (international terrorism)
Homeland security dilemma
Nuclear security dilemma
The core problems of security in the 21st century world have changed profoundly. In particular, there
has been a clear shift in the dominant form of violence and conflict from one characterized by interstate
wars to one in which civil wars, crossborder wars and “low intensity” or guerrilla-type wars including
terrorism increasingly predominate and proliferate. Of course, civil and cross-border wars are nothing
new, and terrorism has been with us throughout human history (Wilkinson, 1974; Laqueur, 1977).
However, their interconnectedness, and the way they are inextricably intertwined with other aspects of
globalization linkages that cut across states and crystallize below the level of states is the key to
understanding the nature of contemporary security and insecurity (Berzins and Cullen, 2003). Philip G.
Cerny, “The New Security Dilemma Revisited: Neomedievalism and the Limits of Hegemony,” in Peter
Dombrowski, ed., The Political Economy of International Security in the 21st Century (Boulder, Colorado:
Lynne Rienner, forthcoming)
NEOMEDIEVALISM is to be the new framework for security dilemma in 21st century
Neomedievalism as a concept is notable primarily for its metaphorical value. In contrast to our modern
notions of statehood or sovereignty, medieval societies were characterized by multiple, overlapping
hierarchies and institutions; their structures were multilayered and asymmetric, involving diverse types
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