Empire, Great Power Hegemony, Balance of Power, Concert of Power

Topics: International relations, World War II, United States Pages: 9 (3180 words) Published: October 25, 2008
The traditional political definition of peace was originated among the ancient Romans who defined that peace, “pax” as “absentia belli”, the absence of war. Peace is a state of harmony, the absence of hostility. This term is applied to describe a cessation of violent international conflict. In this case, peace is the opposite of war. Though human-beings are prone to seek peace, prosperity and civilization for their lives, means used to seek them were at times conducted through the contrast process: war. The origin of war

War was influenced by the pessimistic side of human nature. Machiavelli stated in his book “The Prince” that “....to maintain the state the prince is often obliged to act against his promise, against charity, against humanity and against religion. He should not stray from the good, but he should know how to enter into evil when necessity commands.” Morgenthau has shown his facet by “Animus Dominandi” or the human “lust” for power (Morgenthau 1965:192). Men and women are by nature political animals: they are born to pursue power and to enjoy the fruits of power.” “The craving for power dictates a search of relative advantages and secure political spaces.” Regarding to Thomas Hobbes, “the state of nature”, he quoted: “…without a state to guarantee the means and conditions of security and to promote welfare, human’s life is bound to be solitary, poor, nasty, brutish and short.” Insecurity and uncertainty bring about fear of each other in people’s minds and the way to escape is to create and maintain a sovereign state. The fact that each nation-state is motivated by national interest with a high regard for the normative coreand also from Hobbes’ view, these are the reasons why a state needs to seek for protection of its territory, its population, and other valued ways of life which would be concerned as the national interest to further finalize to foreign policies or even worse, to generate a war. Donald Kagan has pointed out that power by itself is neutral, it being simply a tool for bringing about desired ends. To use power, Kenneth Waltz has stated that the causes of war not only embedded in human behavior, but also from the anarchic structure of the international system. In this essay, I will discuss about which system provides the best conditions for advancing peace, prosperity and civilization. They are namely empire, great power hegemony, balance of power and concerts of power. According to the British school theory of international relations, studying history is important as it is the base of the present.

The empire is defined as a state that extends dominion over areas and populations distinct culturally and ethnically from the culture, ethnicity at the center of power . In regard to this definition, there will be a center nation which has power over the periphery nation so that it can bring about a condition of disharmony of interest between them . In turn, a dominant state and subordinate states which are directly or indirectly ruled has emerged.

In the West, the Athenians discovered that empire, or the extension of territory by a single sovereign power, only succeeds in becoming anything more than "the exploitation, destruction, and subjugation of once free peoples" if the imperial force gives careful consideration to its method of rule. the Spartans were unable to build an empire because, as Aristotle observes, "they had practiced no more fundamental skill than skill in war." The Roman Empire also expanded to conquer the civilized states in the East by using "the fiction of alliance as a cloak for control" or through the slow penetration of Greek society . However, it cannot be denied that Empire is, to use Eric Hobsbawm’s terminology, the domination of the "backward" by the "advanced". Violence is always implicit in the implementation of empire even though it may not always be necessary. Empire inevitably had political consequences at home. In the...
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