Hidemi Suganami

in On the Causes of War

Published in print February 1996 | ISBN: 9780198273387
Published online October 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780191684043 | DOI:

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This chapter explores the necessary conditions of all wars and the relatively common causes of war by looking at three theories. In a study, Rudolph Rummel found that national attributes were negatively correlated with the foreign conflict behaviour of states (for example, anti-foreign demonstrations, severance of diplomatic relations, military action, and wars). Michael Wallace investigated the statistical association between arms races and war and concludes that rapid competitive military growth is strongly associated with the escalation of military confrontations into war. He asserts that the former constitutes at least a valuable ‘early warning indicator’ of the latter. Michael Doyle argued that peace between liberal states has resulted from a combination of three main conditions that are associated with dyadic liberalism: domestic constraints, which liberal institutions impose upon the governments' freedom of action in foreign policy; mutual respect between liberal states based on shared liberal values; and a vested interest in peace resulting from transnational commercial interdependence among the citizens of liberal states.

Keywords: Rudolph Rummel; liberalism; causes; Michael Wallace; Michael Doyle; national attributes; foreign conflict behaviour; liberal states; arms races; peace

Chapter.  13478 words. 

Subjects: International Relations

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