These are my random musings. Hopefully they will be witty, insightful, and frequently updated.
singrdave's Articles In International
January 31, 2008 by singrdave
By the end of the Second World War (WWII), Europe and Japan were in shambles. The United Nations (UN) was established after WWII to prevent war from breaking out again. It was not founded to govern over the myriad nations of the earth, but rather to preserve the sovereignty of each through international oversight and action. All nations could have a seat in the General Assembly, but only five nations would comprise the UN Security Council: the United States (US), France, the United Kingdom (U...
September 5, 2007 by singrdave
The development dilemma addresses the compulsion for the so-called Second and Third Worlds to grow and prosper only through sustainable development. Sustainable development is defined as improving living standards without sacrificing environmental integrity, thus allowing nations to grow with minimal impact on the environment. This is in complete contrast with the development of those countries that have already gone through their growth phases. The nations of the First World became industrio...
July 18, 2006 by singrdave
Is the UN "law" on the unilateral use of force, articulated in Article 2(4), irrelevant? Does it serve any purpose(s)?

The UN banned the unilateral use of force in order to defer all war to the decision of a consensus of nations, as presently embodied in the United Nations.

As far back as the Hague Conferences of 1899, groups of nations have tried "to limit the national use of armaments" (Slomanson 485). Instead of banning war (which was politically impossible), they settled for a group...
June 20, 2006 by singrdave
What are the ramifications of expanding or changing the membership of the Permanent Membership of the UN Security Council (PSC). Before I give my "final answer" (with apologies to Regis), I think expanding the permanent membership is a very bad move. If it was hard getting five consenting PSC states during the Cold War, how hard will it be with seven, nine, or twelve? Any expansion of the membership will degrade the PSC's ability to pass resolutions and lead to further stalemates.

Do Great...
June 10, 2006 by singrdave
INTRODUCTION

Since its founding in 1945, the United Nations' mission has evolved. Its initial charge was to foster international peace through dialogue and preventive action. Over the years, the means to peace have been changed to encompass bringing law, security, and prosperity to a troubled, war torn world. From its New York headquarters, the UN oversees Third World development projects and gives essential guidance to nations on the brink of disaster. America's role in the United Nation...
June 9, 2006 by singrdave
One international law scholar has observed that, "The determination of customary international law is more an art than it is a scientific method."

Determining customary international law is esoteric and amorphous. Since there is no one body of rules for governance, no one criteria or standard for beginning (or ending) conflict, nor is there a bellwether for conduct between states, it is very difficult to strictly codify the "rules of international law". Approaches such as "traditional posit...
May 20, 2006 by singrdave
The best way to erase gender in IR theory is for more women to step up
to the plate.

How can females be heard over the din of male theorists?
Tickner describes her frustration with "traditional notions of national
security... becoming dysfunctional" (Kaufman 739). She goes on to
express her opinion that this dysfunctionality comes from "unequal
gender relations. The relationship between protectors and protected
depends on gender inequalities; a militarized version of security
priv...
May 15, 2006 by singrdave
INTRODUCTION

The foundations for international relations theory were laid in the 5th century BC; trying to keep up with the changing political landscape since then has been difficult. Philosophers have tried to impose order onto the ever-changing world; those theorists had been traditionally grouped into two schools: "realist" and "liberal". However, recent international developments have strained classical definition. In light of new incidents, scholars have redefined or deconstructed pre...
May 8, 2006 by singrdave
INTRODUCTION
Cooperation between states is not only practical but also necessary for mutual ensured survival. Complaints are laid against multinational and nongovernmental organizations, that they maintain the status quo and are hesitant to go in, guns blazing, to affect change within a rogue nation. However, without the levels of social and international understanding and cooperation that exist today, the world would be full of nations ruthlessly attacking one another, waiting for another na...
May 1, 2006 by singrdave
INTRODUCTION
Cooperation between states is not only practical but also necessary for mutual ensured survival. Complaints are laid against multinational and nongovernmental organizations, that they maintain the status quo and are hesitant to go in, guns blazing, to affect change within a rogue nation. However, without the levels of social and international understanding and cooperation that exist today, the world would be full of nations ruthlessly attacking one another, waiting for another na...
April 24, 2006 by singrdave
What is the relationship between domestic politics and international regimes? When decision makers are weighing the costs and benefits of cooperation, what domestic concerns and actors figure into their calculations?

The institutionalist believes that cooperation is a necessary step in achieving the ideal: interdependent, cooperative international society. Keohane regards "sophisticated institutionalists" as ones who "accept the self-interested nature of the state and believe that cooperati...
April 23, 2006 by singrdave
Model One deals with the Rational Policy paradigm, which states that foreign policy is conceived by a course of action undertaken by the government in question. Governments therefore set the "national interest" and act upon it, both internally and externally. These expected decisions arise from consistency in policy and planning. The government abides by principles and has best courses of action laid out before it. Morgenthau stated that this method "provides for rational discipline in act...
April 23, 2006 by singrdave
Q: What are the assumptions of the "rational actor model"? Are they too strong?

The first assumption is that people are rational. "Rational" is a very subjective term, so when one ascribes rationality to an individual or governing power, one must understand what rationality entails. "Rationality does not carry any connotations of normative behavior. That is, behaving rationally does not necessarily mean that one behaves morally or ethically... Rational behavior is purposeful behavior." (No...
April 11, 2006 by singrdave
Liberalism is often referred to as “idealism” in the literature of the field. Do you feel this term accurately describes the liberal view of international relations?

When the word “liberal” is invoked, I have to admit it brings to mind the derogatory epithet used by George H.W. Bush to attack Michael Dukakis in the 1988 presidential race. I also think of tree-hugging hippies having love-ins at Woodstock. So to discover that the term “liberal” actually means:
1) Not limited to or by ...
April 7, 2006 by singrdave
Will the United States be forever the sole power in the world stage? Kenenth Waltz said, "The American aspiration to freeze historical development by working to keep the world unipolar is doomed." (p. 345) Let's react to this in the context of the "rise of China."

Kenneth Waltz said that America was trying to maintain "the least
durable of international configurations": a unipolar world (Kaufman
339). Unipolar worlds are by their very nature fragile, since two
forces work against it:
...