The Theories Of Neorealism And World War I

1333 Words 6 Pages
In 1914, Europe erupted into a conflict now referred to as World War I, which led to the deaths of over 38 million soldiers and civilians and becoming the ninth most deadliest conflict thus far in human history. With such death and destruction seen through this 4 year international conflict, a variety of international relation theories have arose trying to determine the causation of the war; of the theories that have arose, Neorealism and Neoliberalism seem the best at explaining the conflict. Of these two theories, I believe that Neorealism best explains the war aspirations of both the Allied and Central Powers. Beginning on the theory of Neoliberalism; it begins with a theory in which states are self interested players willing to cooperate …show more content…
(Mingst, 2016) Within this theory, the main focal point is surrounded by the ever looming “security dilemma” in which states build themselves up continuously in order to boost their own defense, however from this buildup opposing nations fearing the buildup continue to build themselves up to boost their own defense. This “security dilemma” sees itself as a never-ending loop in which Country A fearing the strength of Country B builds themselves up in order to prevent Country B from attacking them, even if it appears at the moment both countries are balanced in strength for the possibility of future conflict. (Mingst, 2016) Through the beliefs of Realism as a whole, the purpose of the state is for the leader to attempt to continue gaining power in order to be the strongest state to prevent being attacked in the long run. However, Neorealism best explains World War I due to its focus towards the international system rather than through nation based ones, as the distribution of international power determines how far a state will be willing to go for international power. (Mingst, …show more content…
(History.com, 2009) Through the four years of World War 1, the premise of the powers involved aiming for increasing their territories and influence through the conflict had been seen on both sides such as with Italy leaving Germany’s side in order to increase their territory, France to gain lost lands from Germany, Germany to increase their global power, the Ottomans hoping to boost their dying nation back towards success, and the United States eventual joining in order to boost their international status. (Wilde, 2016) (History.com, 2009) However, the signs pointing towards Neorealism can also be argued for the years leading towards the formation of the alliances, as these alliances had formed due to the fear of Germany rising into too much power and the start of the war, even with a relative balance of power in each alliance, due to Germany fearing of future imbalance in the form of a security dilemma. (History.com, 2009) With the focus of World War 1 being seen as the increasing of territory and influence, as well as the Triple Entente fearing the continual strengthening of the Triple Alliance as a security dilemma, and Germany fearing

Related Documents