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University of Toronto St. George
Political Science
Jean- Yves Haine

REALISMPoliticians are afraid of theorists consider them too abstract and not political enough or practical enough the question tend to ask is What should I do now politicians tend to reason more like historians than political scientistsPoliticians see analogies in the past but not future prepositions they do sometimes make their way of decision makersNATO was about expanding power of the west by doing soRussia felt more isolated than it used to be NATO expansion viewed as a threat for Russianthe gain of one is the lost of anotherNATO about enlarging the scope of democratic countries bring democracy an stability to Europe Russia has everything to gainwinwin scenario 2 different viewWhat matter the most is the perception of one specific actorsOrigin of realism there are many forms one is to look at ancient history Greek and Roman Empire to modern history in Europe and creation of Italian city states realism based on experience of statesmanship throughout historystarted with the failure of league of nations after WWI thats when first debate of realism debate started to emerge throughout Europe and US the great debate of the 1930s debate about can we do international politics relying only on values is there another place for power consideration The background of debate was experiment of collective security league of nations after WWI liberal principle has been put in place in order to achieve peace what we need first and foremost is selfdetermination for people therefore after WWI the creation of states in Europe right of sovereignty for leaders of state which were guaranteed by collective security framework league of nations league of nations was an organization that will ensure stability and peace amongst these countries WWI was an absolute disaster for European countries huge number of casualties after WWI the mantra was never again thats why the leaders tried to setup league of nations to set up security for all in the 20s30s there was an increase of liberal principles o Realists league of nations forgot power cannot have organization whose objective is to ensure peace but fundamentally powerless which has no capacity to impose peace two specific problems to league of nations 1 strategy in the 20s30s inside the league of nations there was huge ambition they wanted to decrease disarmaments of the countries first wave of designing treaties but there are conflict bt security and disbarment how can you punish a country that doesnt behave according to rules if you dont have t hepower to punish to be able to impose peace you need to keep capability to wage war disbarment and collective security is a contraditction in terms it doesnt work 2 membership US wasnt member of league of nations Germany wasnt at the start a member they were crucial powers that were left outside the collective security framework how can you set up and organization is to ensure peace if the most relevant powers of the day is not in the league it just doesnt work the 1930s have demonstrated that the league of nations with liberal principles virtually failedno one to stop the rise of nazi Germany or japan they were capabilities power to do itIn order to enforce these principles you need power you need capabilities the first round of grand debate the realists won because the war occurredThe coldwar was the framework where realists felt at homeall about power politics origins of realism maybe found in ancient history but the most relevant debate happened in the 1930s the victory of realists thinking vs liberal thinkingCore elements1 statism mosto important actors of world politics are the state they are the relevant level of analysis states are key actors soveriengty fundamental for intenrinatl politics states have th monopoly on legitmate violence fundamental characteristics of world politics state are the main actors international institutions or any collective endeavours are just sideshows they arent important they are only what the state will agree amongst themselves state are the main drivers hard to internaitnoal instiution to impose own wil above the state state always able to do what they want instead of following UN or any other international organizations the rest arent important John Bolton was sent by Bush to UN means fundanetally that the US at that time did not take the UN seriously because Bolton was a major realist and ironicially the UN ambassador for us 2survival the first objective of any states is to survive different story for other countries not as secure as countries like Canada eg Iraq Pakistanin the history of states if you dont care enough about own survival you can disappear Poland disappeared twice number 1 key objective for states linked to nature of international system fundamental characteristics of internaiotnal system to realist is anarchy that theres no world governor there is nothing above the states and precisely because there is no world governor the first1
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