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22. What kind of power? European Union enlargement and beyond  

Lisbeth Aggestam

This chapter examines the complexity of the European Union as a foreign policy actor by focusing on its so-called Big Bang enlargement. Three of the largest EU members — Britain, France, and Germany — differed in their beliefs about the implications of enlargement for their own national interests, shifts to the existing balance of power within the EU, the impact on the functioning of EU institutions, and the future of the integration process. The chapter first provides an overview of EU foreign policy before discussing the historic decision to enlarge the EU in 2004 and 2007. In particular, it analyses the significance of European norms in reshaping member states’ interests and the supranational role of the European Commission in framing and implementing the decision to enlarge the EU. It also considers the European Neighbourhood Policy (ENP) as an alternative when the powerful instrument of the EU enlargement is no longer available.

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Cover Foreign Policy

23. Energy and foreign policy  

EU–Russia energy dynamics

Amelia Hadfield

This chapter examines the role of energy in foreign policy by focusing on Russia’s decision in 2006 to temporarily stop the flow of natural gas to the Ukraine, along with its impact on European markets. It first explains how energy contributes to national prosperity and underwrites national security, noting that states now desire energy security in the same way that they desire military and economic security. It then considers the political significance of energy during the post-Cold War years before discussing the ‘gas spat’ between Russia and Ukraine. It also explores the European energy insecurity dilemma that followed the spat and shows that much of the current tensions afflicting Europe and Russia are driven by an inability to manage energy security as a potent area of foreign policy.

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4. Constructivism and foreign policy  

Trine Flockhart

This chapter examines the basic assumptions and foreign policy relevance of constructivism. Using European security as an illustrative example, it shows that constructivism is a valuable tool not only for understanding foreign policy, but also as a guide for prescribing foreign policy. The chapter first explains what constructivism is, outlining the constructivist view that anarchy exists in different forms with major implications for how agents act. It then considers some of the main propositions and conceptual tools of constructivism, with particular emphasis on its arguments regarding identity, social construction, rules, and practice. It also analyses constructivism’s alternative understandings of NATO’s role after the end of the Cold War and in present-day European security. It asserts that theory is important in foreign policy making — including constructivism — because different theories imply different policies and may make alternative policy options visible which would otherwise easily have been overlooked.

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Cover US Foreign Policy

13. The USA and the EU  

Mike Smith

This chapter examines the United States’ involvement in the transatlantic relationship with the European integration project. In particular, it considers the ways in which U.S. foreign policy makers have developed images of the European Community and now the European Union on the challenges posed by European integration for U.S. policy processes and the uses of U.S. power. It also explores how these challenges have been met in the very different conditions of the Cold War and post-Cold War periods. It concludes by raising a number of questions about the capacity of the United States to shape and adapt to European integration, and thus about the future of U.S.–EU relations.

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Cover International Relations of the Middle East

18. Europe in the Middle East  

Rosemary Hollis

This concluding chapter explores the evolution and development of European approaches to the Middle East. An expansion of European imperial rule across the Middle East followed the collapse of the Ottoman Empire at the end of the First World War. By the end of the twentieth century, the United States was unrivalled power-broker across the region, but the Europeans had turned old imperialist relationships into commercial ones. Bound to MENA by economic interdependence and migration flows, the European Union (EU) formulated a series of initiatives designed to address new transnational security concerns through the deployment of ‘soft power’. By 2011 and the eruption of popular uprisings across the Arab world, the EU was itself in the throes of an economic crisis that forced a rethink in European policies toward the region and a reassertion of bilateralism.

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Cover US Foreign Policy

23. Drifting apart? The emerging end of the transatlantic partnership  

Stephen M. Walt

This chapter examines the transatlantic partnership between Europe and the United States. It first considers US strategic interests and how they are now changing, along with the implications of this shift for US foreign and defence policy priorities. It then describes some of the fundamental challenges faced by the European Union, including over-expansion, the demise of the Warsaw Pact, the euro crisis, a deteriorating regional environment, the persistence of nationalism, and the refugee crisis. It argues that these challenges threaten the liberal order that is one of the West’s most salient achievements, raise serious questions about the EU’s long-term future, and make Europe a less reliable and valuable partner for the United States. The chapter concludes with an assessment of possible prospects for the US-Europe relations, including the (slim) possibility of a genuine renewal in transatlantic ties.

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Cover The Globalization of World Politics

23. Regionalism in international affairs  

Edward Best and Thomas Christiansen

This chapter examines the different regional arrangements that have emerged around the globe. It considers whether there has been a uniform process of regional cooperation and integration across all continents, the driving forces in the establishment of various forms of regional cooperation, and the extent to which cooperation at the regional level changes the nature of international politics. After clarifying the various concepts and definitions associated with regionalism, the chapter discusses relevant developments in the Americas, Africa, Asia, and Europe. In particular, it looks at regional arrangements in Eurasia and the post-Soviet states. It also explores the process of European integration as well as the similarities and the differences among the various regional arrangements, with particular emphasis on the unique circumstances that shaped the emergence of the European Union. Case studies look at Mercosur, which was the Common Market of the South, created for Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay, and Uruguay, and regionalism in Southeast Asia.

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Cover International Relations Since 1945

3. Empire, Cold War, and Decolonization, 1945–53  

This chapter examines decolonization and the changes that took place within the European empires during the early years of the Cold War. Decolonization constituted a crucial element of the new international order after the Second World War and formed part of the broader shift in the global balance of power. The war marked the end of the European-dominated system of nation states and was followed by the decline of the major European powers, with international dominance lying for a quarter of a century with the United States, challenged only by the Soviet Union. The chapter considers the challenges to colonial rule that were evident in both Africa and Asia during the inter-war years. It also discusses the imperialism and the struggles against it that have formed part of a post-war landscape in the Middle East.

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Cover Democratization

21. Post-Communist Central and Eastern Europe  

Christian W. Haerpfer and Kseniya Kizilova

This chapter examines the democratic revolutions that occurred in post-communist Europe since 1989. It first considers the beginning of the decline of communism and the failed attempts to reform communist one-party states from 1970 to 1988 as stage one of democratization. It then discusses the end of communist regimes as the second stage of democratization—between 1989 and 1991. It also looks at stage three of the democratization process, which focuses on the creation of new democracies. The chapter concludes with an assessment of the main drivers of successful democratization in post-communist Europe.

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Cover International Relations Since 1945

20. Europe and the Former Soviet Union  

This chapter examines important developments in Europe and the former Soviet Union. The collapse of communism paved the way for the greatest changes in Europe since 1919, with the political disintegration of three Eurasian countries: the then USSR, with localized outbreaks of violence; Yugoslavia, with several years of bloody civil war; and Czechoslovakia, where the Czechs and Slovaks peacefully agreed to go their own way as of January 1993, in the so-called ‘velvet divorce’. Communism’s demise also brought reunification to a divided nation: Germany. The chapter first considers the German reunification, before discussing the break-up of the USSR and the Wars of Succession, Yugoslavia’s break-up and the Bosnian War, NATO and European security, and the emergence of the European Union, which replaced the European Community.

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Cover International Relations Since 1945

6. Maintaining the Spheres of Influence  

This chapter examines how the United States and the Soviet Union tried to maintain their respective spheres of influence during the Cold War, especially in three regions: Eastern Europe, Western Europe, and Latin America. The death of Joseph Stalin and the assumption of power by the triumvirate of Lavrenti Beria, Nikita Khrushchev, and Georgi Malenkov resulted in a fresh approach to domestic issues and to the nature of Soviet control over its European satellites. The apparent change produced a new Soviet approach to East–West relations. The chapter first considers how the new Soviet leadership addressed the crisis in East Germany before analysing American influence in Western Europe and US relations with Latin America. The discussion covers themes and events such as the Soviet policy on Hungary and Poland, the Messina Conference and the Spaak Committee, nuclear cooperation and multilateral force, and the US response to the Cuban Revolution.

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Cover US Foreign Policy

13. The USA and the EU  

Michael Smith

This chapter examines the United States’ transatlantic relationship with the European integration project and its implications for US foreign policy. In particular, it considers the ways in which US policy makers have developed images of the European Community (EC) and later the European Union (EU) on the challenges posed by European integration for US policy processes and the uses of US power. The chapter first explores key factors in the evolution of the relationship within US foreign policy up to the end of the Cold War before discussing trends and tensions in the period between 1990 and 2016 covering the presidencies of Bill Clinton, George W. Bush, and Barack Obama. It also analyzes the impact of Donald Trump’s policies on US relations with the EU before concluding with an assessment of a number of wider questions about the future of the US–EU relations.

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Cover US Foreign Policy

22. The future of US foreign policy  

Anatol Lieven

This chapter examines possible futures for American foreign policy in terms of the interests and ideology of the U.S. elites (and to a lesser extent the population at large), the structures of U.S. political life, and the real or perceived national interests of the United States. It first provides an overview of the ideological roots of U.S. foreign policy before discussing key contemporary challenges for U.S. foreign policy. In particular, it considers American relations with China, how to mobilize U.S. military power for foreign policy goals, and the issue of foreign aid. The chapter proceeds by analysing the most important features of America’s future foreign policies, focusing on the Middle East, the Far East, Russia and the former Soviet Union, and Europe and the transatlantic relationship. It concludes by describing some catastrophic scenarios that could accelerate the decline of US power.

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Cover The Globalization of World Politics

18. Race in world politics  

Robbie Shilliam

This chapter examines the ways in which race can been understood as a fundamental ordering principle of world politics. It explores how the histories of European imperialism and colonialism are crucial for understanding the global impact of race, and whether contemporary world politics is less racist than it was in the past. It also considers the relationship between race, biology, and culture. The chapter concludes by discussing the historical processes that gave rise to race, some key debates around the conceptualization of race, and how race continues to order world politics. Two case studies are presented: the first is about race, caste, and Dalits in India; the second looks into the world of ecofascism.

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Cover International Relations Theories

4. Liberalism  

Bruce Russett

This chapter examines the expansion of three central phenomena associated with liberalism and its emphasis on the potentially peace-promoting effects of domestic and transnational institutions: the spread of democracy throughout most of the world; globalization; and the proliferation of intergovernmental organizations, especially those composed primarily of democratic governments. Each of these assumptions supports and extends the other in a powerful feedback system envisioned by Immanuel Kant. The chapter first considers four major changes in the world over the last century and particularly over recent decades before discussing the ‘epidemiology’ of international conflict. It then explores constraints on war from the perspective of realism vs. liberal institutionalism, whether democracies are peaceful in general, and how order is nurtured within anarchy. It also presents a case study of the European Union and concludes with some reflections on power, hegemony, and liberalism.

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Cover Global Politics

4. Ethics  

This chapter discusses the correlation between ethics and global politics. It starts with a myth suggesting that power politics can be conducted without considering morality, especially following the rise of the modern state system. Niccolò Machiavelli’s The Prince (1532) has served as the ultimate guidebook for leaders and students of politics as it insinuates that European polities’ moral foundations might not be a proper basis for establishing well-run kingdoms and principalities. The chapter then looks at three key traditions of European Enlightenment thought which form the basis of much of the ethical and moral thinking we see at play in contemporary articulations of the good in political decision-making: deontology, utilitarianism, and contractualism. It also examines Confucianism, Ubuntu, and Sumak Kawsay to highlight the various ethical voices and traditions which have sustained political communities across the globe.

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Cover International Relations Since 1945

4. The Cold War Intensifies: Containment Superseded, 1948–53  

This chapter examines the intensification of the Cold War and the decision of the US to abandon ‘containment’ in favour of ‘liberation’ during the period 1948–53. By 1948, the dominant relationship between the Soviet Union, the US, and Britain had moved from one of cooperation to confrontation, and then to hostility and conflict. In this situation, the Cold War required a clearly defined strategy for fighting it. Western interpretations of this strategy have largely been based on the idea of containment and especially about the form of containment that should be adopted. The chapter discusses the origins of Cold War fighting; armaments and militarization; the Cold War and European integration; the NSC 68 memorandum, rearmament, and the Cold War offensive controversy; and the growing importance of communist China and the conflict in Korea.

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Cover Democratization

19. Southern Europe  

Richard Gunther

This chapter examines the political consequences of different types of regime change in Southern Europe by comparing democratic transitions via ‘elite pacts’ or ‘elite convergence’ with those involving much higher levels of mass mobilization. It begins with overviews of the distinguishing features of the transitions to democracy in Portugal, Greece, and Spain, along with some observations about how the processes of regime transformation affected the conduct of politics for several years after democracy was established. It then considers the relevance of international actors and events, economic factors, as well as social-structural and cultural characteristics to processes of regime change. It also discusses lessons that can be drawn from the experiences of Portugal, Greece, and Spain and shows that the type of regime transition can have a significant impact on the success of democratization.

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Cover Democratization

6. The Global Wave of Democratization  

John Markoff and Daniel Burridge

This chapter focuses on the great wave of democracy that had touched every continent. In the early 1970s, Western Europe was home to several non-democratic countries, most of Latin America was under military or other forms of authoritarian rule, the eastern half of Europe was ruled by communist parties, much of Asia was undemocratic, and in Africa colonial rule was largely being succeeded by authoritarian regimes. By the early twenty-first century, things had changed considerably, albeit to different degrees in different places. The chapter looks at regions of the world that underwent significant change in democracy between 1972 and 2004, including Mediterranean Europe, Latin America, Soviet/Communist Bloc, Asia, and Africa. It considers what was distinctive about each region’s democratization and what they had in common. It concludes with an overview of challenges faced by democracy in the early twenty-first century.

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Cover The Globalization of World Politics

23. Regionalism in international affairs  

Edward Best and Thomas Christiansen

This chapter examines the different regional arrangements that have emerged around the globe. It considers whether there has been a uniform process of regional cooperation and integration across all continents, the driving forces in the establishment of various forms of regional cooperation, and the extent to which cooperation at the regional level changes the nature of international politics. After clarifying the various concepts and definitions associated with regionalism, the chapter discusses relevant developments in the Americas, Africa, Asia, and Europe. In particular, it looks at regional arrangements in Eurasia and the post-Soviet states. It also explores the process of European integration as well as the similarities and the differences among the various regional arrangements, with particular emphasis on the unique circumstances that shaped the emergence of the European Union. There is an Opposing Opinions box that asks whether regional cooperation strengthens the state.