10 short answer 1 short essay

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Why, In addition to all that is required on the national level, is an international justice system required?

An international criminal court is required to prosecute perpetrators of very serious crimes committed in their territories or by their nationals. It does not substitute the national justice system but rather it compliments it by intervening when a state is either unable or unwilling to genuinely carry out investigations and prosecute the perpetrators (ICC, n.d).

What is Huntington’s main argument in Clash of the civilizations?

His main argument was that conflicts of the future would occur along the cultural lines that separate civilizations. A universal civilization does not exist. There are only cultural blocks with their own distinctive values. (Piercy, 2015)

Describe a current international issue from a realist perspective

Realism can help explain Iran’s nuclear policy. The policy conforms to Machiavellian principles that focus on prudence and forethought to ensure a state can ward off threats posed by its neighbors. Presently the Iranians biggest antagonist is Israel which is thought to possess nuclear power. Therefore, Iran uses security maximization and civil purposes as justification for nuclear proliferation. The Iranians claim that the nuclear weapons are meant for purely peaceful purposes.

At the same time Israel considers the Iranian nuclear program as a threat to their existence and the idea that it is concrete power that that settles international issues is the guiding principle of the Israeli government’s policy on the matter.

Another take on the matter is that Iran’s desire to obtain nuclear weapons is driven by a desire to impose authority in the Middle East rather than eliminate Israel. In this case achieving military capabilities can guarantee its regional and international status as well as security and self-reliance (Voinea, 2013).

How do the IMF and the World Bank work together?

The IMF and The World Bank share the same goal of raising the standards of living for their member countries. Therefore their roles tend to coincide leading to them working together in the following way (IMF, 2016):

  • Annual meetings to discuss current international financial and economic issues and set priorities for the organization.

  • The managing director of the IMF and the president of the World Bank also consult regularly and issue joint statements and articles.

  • The two organizations staff collaborate on country assistance. The IMFs assessment on a country’s general economic situation aids the World Bank in identifying specific projects that would be worthwhile.

  • The two organizations work together to reduce the debt burden of heavily indebted poor countries and continually create debt sustainability analysis under the Debt Sustainability Framework (DCF) developed by the two institutions.

  • They have jointly published the annual Global Monitoring Report (GMR) to assess the progress toward the Millennium development goals and are actively engaged in implementing the 2030 development agenda.

  • The IMF and World Bank work together to make the financial sector in member countries resilient and well regulated.

What is the Washington Consensus?

The Washington consensus is a set ten principles that the US government and International financial institutions based in the US capital believed were necessary elements of first stage reform that all countries should adopt for economic growth.

According to the World Health Organization (2016) they are:

  • Fiscal Discipline by restricting criteria to limit budget deficit

  • Public Expenditure priorities by moving expenditure from subsidiaries and administration to fields with high economic returns.

  • Tax reform through cutting marginal tax rate and broadening the tax base.

  • Financial liberalization when interest rates are determined by the market

  • Manage exchange rates for rapid growth of non-traditional exports

  • Trade liberalization

  • Increasing foreign direct investment by reducing barriers

  • Privatization of state enterprises

  • Deregulation in areas that restrict competition

  • Secure intellectual property rights without excessive costs

  • Reduce the role of the state

What is the UN’s role in relation to Human right?

The UN has helped negotiate more than seventy human rights treaties and declarations mainly focused on the rights of vulnerable groups such as women, children, the disabled, and minorities. These treaties and declarations provide a powerful tool for promoting and protecting all rights.

The UN also organizes World Conferences which are forums for focusing the world’s attention on issues such as the environment, human rights and economic development. Such conferences include World Summit for children (1990), World Conference of human rights (1993), and the Fourth world conference on Women (1995) among others (UNICEF, 2013).

The UN also monitors the human rights records of nations through the Office of the High Commission for Human Rights which is established to promote and protect the realization and enjoyment of human rights

Is there a norm of R2P (right to protect) in international relations?

R2P is an evolving norm that is still in the norm development process. The events of Rwanda in 1994 and Srebrenica in 1995 intensified a debate of whether the international community has the right to intervene without the consent of the state or whether the internal affairs of a state were none on the international community’s business (Fitzsimmons, 2015). R2P was introduced to focus responsibility of states away from the right of a powerful few to intervene to the protection of people.

However, the UN still faces challenges in invoking R2P. There are great concerns of the R2Ps susceptibility to politicization, abuse and misuse by powerful states. The Trojan horse critique is emphasized by various countries whereby R2O is seen to provide a humanitarian justification for powerful states to intervene in weaker ones while they ulterior self-serving objectives. Other states claim that R2P is inconsistent with international law in regards to the sovereignty of states, their territorial integrity and political independence all of which are enshrined in the UN charter. Therefore R2P lacks the position universality needed to be considered a norm.

Who is responsible for executing the Right to protect doctrine? States or the International community.

Responsibility under R2P is apportioned between concerned states and the international community. First and foremost, the duty lies with the state but the international community has a role in encouraging and assisting the state in fulfilling this responsibility. Only is the state fails to protect the population would the international community take action.

Who are the main actors in International Relations?

There are two types of actors in International Relations which are state and non-state actors. States are territories run by a government and that have a permanent population.

Non state actors are individuals or organizations that have powerful economic, social or political power and have influence at national or international levels although they do not belong to nor have they allied themselves to any country or state (Seiya, 2016).

How important do you see the WTO has to IR?

International relations is the study of how different actors within the international community interact with one another. Such interaction is in the form of trade between countries and the World Trade Organization is one of the biggest trade organizations in the facet of international relations (International Relations, 2016).

WTO is very important to International relations because it is a forum for governments to negotiate trade deals, settle trade disputes and sort out trade problems that they face with each other. The WTO contributes to International relations by

  • Establishing rules that govern how member create domestic policies that affect international trade

  • Requiring members to make public a list of import tariffs for all products which cannot be altered except by multilateral negotiations

  • Setting up dispute settlement procedures similar to those of a court where complaints can be heard from their members.

Therefore the WTO creates a forum that protects member states as they trade amongst each other and in the process improves their relations between them.

Essay Question

Why is ‘Security’ difficult to define? How has the definition of security changed and why?

The traditional definition of security as attributed to Max weber was having monopoly on the use and licensing of violence within a territory. The security of a state was therefore threatened by any change that may threaten this monopoly, which was usually from external forces.

The changing nature of threats necessitates a new understanding of security. In the 1980s description of security began to be questioned in terms of who and what should be secured. Different actors such as human security, different threats such as environmental security, and different responses such as non-military collective action began to emerge (Jean, n.d).

In the past, security strategy was focused on external military threats yet the nature of future conflicts may require them to shift focus to problems such as environmental pollution, global warming and the massive migration of unwanted refugees. This issues are rarely the cause of direct conflict but can produce conflicts through economic decline and political instability.

A fundamental framework has also been developed called ‘Human security’. This framework expresses the need for safety with regards to basic needs such as access to food, water, environmental and energy protection, protection from violence by the police, gangs or domestic partners and freedom from economic exploitation.

The difficulty of limiting the concept of security to physical violence is that even economic and political relations are characterized by force. For example if someone has no economic right to food or no rights to a resource that can be exchanged for food, his or her dilemma is as difficult as one deprived of food at gun point. While this concept is useful in emphasizing different human needs, it may be too expansive to be an effective policy goal.

Another definition suggest that a threat to national security anything that threatens to degrade the quality of life of a state’s inhabitants or significantly narrows the range of policy choices available to them. Such a definition includes the threat of earthquakes and hurricanes which are not deliberately inflicted by an external or internal agent and are therefore national emergencies as opposed to threats to national security.

The difficulty in defining security stems from the effort to include everything that is considered good or necessary. This all inclusive definition makes it so elastic that it is no longer a useful tool for analysis and loses its effectiveness in prioritizing policies. A choice to direct the government’s defense budget to environmental protection might produce a better world but it doesn’t produce a secure world.


Fitzsimmons, L.G. (2015).The status of the responsibility to Protect norm in International relations. Retrieved 23 May 2016, from http://www.e-ir.info/2015/06/11/the-status-of-the-responsibility-to-protect-norm-in-international-relations/

ICC. (n.d). Understanding the International Criminal Court. Retrieved 23 May 2016, from https://www.icc-cpi.int/resource-library/Documents/UICCEng.pdf

IMF (2016).The IMF and the World Bank. Retrieved 23 May 2016, from http://www.imf.org/external/np/exr/facts/imfwb.html

International Relations. (2016).World Trade Organization. Retrieved 23 May 2016, from http://internationalrelations.org/world-trade-organization/

Jean, L.(n.d). The changing nature of International Security. Retrieved 23 May 2016, from http://www.iusafs.org/pdf/stjean.pdf

Piercy, H.F. (2011).Huntington’s Clash of Civilisations. Retrieved 23 May 2016, from http://www.e-ir.info/2011/08/30/huntingtons-clash-of-civilizations/

Seiya, J. (2016). Role of none state actors in International Relations. Retrieved 23 May 2016, from https://www.academia.edu

UNICEF. (2013). The UN role in Human Rights respect. Retrieved 23 May 2016, from http://www.unicef.org/crc/index_30198.html

Voinea, E. (2013).Realism Today. Retrieved 23 May 2016, from http://www.e-ir.info/2013/03/01/realism-today/

World Health Organization. (2016). Washington Consensus. Retrieved 23 May 2016, from http://www.who.int/trade/glossary/story094/en/