Realism and Instruments of Power Essay

2289 Words Dec 25th, 2011 10 Pages
The international environment is very complex, due to the inclusion of various political actors and the interaction of these actors at different levels. Typically, threats emerge from competition between states over geopolitical and traditional issues. Recently, non-traditional threats have emerged that affect the national interests of various countries; one of these challenges that is quickly moving to the forefront of importance is that of energy security, and the related topic of environmental security. Political scientists and leaders try to distill the international environment down to basic theories, which can help determine appropriate courses of action in this landscape of change. Using the theory of realism, and responding with …show more content…
Water scarcity, air pollution, and deforestation are results of industrialization and the competition for scarce resources, which can lead to large scale migration, wide discontent, and uprisings against ruling leaders (Crawford, 2006, 1). Regional neighbors see the impact of this competition and, because of fear, use policy to obtain the needed resources for their own security. The use of IOPs, military, information, diplomatic, and economic, can help the US mitigate or deter the effects of energy and environmental security issues at home, and in other areas throughout the world.
The IOPs are classifications of a wide range of resources, techniques, and capabilities, which an international actor, both state and non-state, can use to apply its power in the realm of international relations. The IOPs can be grouped into two types of power: diplomacy and information into soft power, the ability of states to cooperate with each other, and military and economic into hard power, the coercive power a state uses to influence another (ACSC, 2010, L3). Military power provides states with the ability to coerce or employ violence to shape the international environment (ACSC, 2010, L3). Military power does not have to solely rely on the use of force; the…

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