Articles

E-IR’s articles offer an accessible route into some of the most interesting ideas, debates and policy issues in international politics. All articles are published under the ISSN 2053-8626. Use the search box on the right with appropriate keywords to enable you to find expert content on the exact subject that you seek.

Freedom against Technology? The Prospects for US Missile Defence

July 8th 2008 marked a new chapter in the expansion of US plans for Ballistic Missile Defence with the signing of a framework agreement that allows for the placement of missile defence ‘X-Band’ radar in the Czech Republic. But what are the prospects for its success?

The Legitimacy of War Today

The Legitimacy of War Today

The paradox of modern warfare is that while its legal boundaries became more tightly defined, its practice became ever more murderous. The expansion of international law coincided with the industrialisation of warfare and the development of total war. In this context, what makes for legitimate warfare today?

Endless War? Why winning is for losers.

The magical thinking behind the ‘war on terror’ has allowed a radical disconnect between problem and solution – most glaringly, between 9/11 and attacking Iraq. Solutions offered by leaders with a degree of certainty often appeal to publics even if they are apparently illogical. But why pursue such policies at all?

Why Bush should go to the Olympics

Critics have deplored President Bush’s announcement over the weekend of his intent to attend the Beijing Olympics because of China’s poor human rights record and unfulfilled promises to the International Olympic Committee to liberalize before the Games. This is a wrong-headed view. The President should attend the opening ceremonies in August, and have a great time rooting for American athletes.

The Zimbabwe Crisis and R2P

The political and humanitarian situation in Zimbabwe continues to cause great concern. This article considers whether R2P offers a framework for a national and, if necessary, an international response to the crisis. It is argued the UN has other diplomatic tools which could be more effective at this stage.

Fixing War Powers and Constraining Presidential Power?

Last week, the National War Powers Commission published its report on how to fix war powers. The Commission notes that the War Powers Resolution of 1973 has been monumentally ineffective at resolving fundamental questions — both constitutional and political — of war powers.

The Politics of Justice: The International Criminal Court Prosecutor seeks a Warrant

There is some irony in the criticism of ICC Chief Prosecutor Luis Moreno Ocampo for issuing his request for a warrant of arrest for Sudanese President Omar Hassan Ahmad Al Bashir. The Office of the Prosecutor (OTP) was previously criticised for moving too slowly and for not targeting high levels of the government. How sensitive to a politics of consequence, then, should the Prosecutor be?

The Cold War and Chinese Foreign Policy

In October 1949, the People’s Republic of China (PRC) replaced the Republic of China (ROC) after the Chinese Communists won a nationwide victory in the civil war and drove the Nationalist government to Taiwan. A Communist China, comprising a quarter of the world’s population, had inevitably extended the Cold War to East Asia. The PRC’s foreign policy during the Cold War went through several distinctive stages.

Can the World Position Itself for the Next President Before the Actual Election?

For the first time since 1952, neither an incumbent president nor a vice president of the incumbent’s party is running for the White House in the US presidential election of 2008. The 2008 election and its outcome thus represent something of an unknown quantity not only to the American electorate, but to the rest of the world as well.

President Barack Obama’s Foreign Policy: Change We Can Believe In?

The election of America’s first African-American president would excite enormous expectation in Europe, and, at least temporarily, reverse much of the hostility to US foreign policy which has been generated over the last six or so years. But how much change should we expect from Obama’s foreign policy?

Global food price rises: Threat or opportunity for poor farmers?

After thirty years of stability, staple food prices have increased on average by 43% in world markets this year and 80% since 2005. The fastest rising commodity, wheat, was $105 a tonne in 2000 and now costs $481. This is of enormous concern in less developed countries (LDCs), but are there also opportunities present for poor farmers?

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