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PS121 paper - (MH4704 1 The growing World-Wide influence of...

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(MH4704) 1 The growing World-Wide influence of technology advancements, trade relations and state identities has created a society of lasting communication and global relationships that will only continue to increase. The international community is one of perpetual advancement and development. Today it is characterized by a uni-polar system in which the United States remains the largest and most influential power. The structural characteristics of the hegemonic powers of Rome and the United State are indeed similar, but because of the expansion of communication and inter-connectedness it is impractical to consider them completely analogous. In recognizing such it has been, rightly so, the goal of the academic community to re-examine state relationships and develop a new understanding of the characteristics and fungibility of power. Globalization has created an environment in which military “hard power” has decreased as an effective tool for a states position and security instead; economic trade, attitude and culture, the ideas of “soft power” have materialized as emergent forces that deserve to be both recognized and expanded upon. Thus it is important to recognize the decrease in the capability of “hard power” while not casting it out as an irrelevant theory in all of its aspects. The remainder of this essay will develop the idea of “soft power” while recognizing the situations in which military power is not only feasible but positively necessary. To have a base understanding of international theory it is important to grasp Kenneth Waltz’s model of neo-realism and traditional state security. With the advancement of soft power not all aspects of Waltz’s theory should be ignored. I will continue then by examining the conditions of international uni-polarity following the Cold War and the fall of the Berlin wall with the rise of the United States as a hegemonic power. From this position it is possible to recognize where the US foreign policy of solely “hard power” especially in the previous Bush administration failed to achieve a definitive result or assured state security. The
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(MH4704) 2 fungibility of force has come to increasingly rest upon economic activity and trade relations as tools of persuasion consequently making it possible for a state to advance its agenda without the use of direct military force In the era after the end of the Cold War as well as the fall of the Berlin Wall the world and in particular Americans believed that it was truly the age of Globalization. That the inter-
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