Thursday, December 18, 2014

The World Is Anarchic, Ruled by Needs

If you only read one foreign policy article this year, Robert Kaplan's The Virtue of Amoral Foreign Policy should be that article. It comes via RealClearWorld.
When we think seriously about foreign policy we think amorally. For foreign policy involves the battle of geographical space and power, played out over the millennia by states and empires in a world where there is no referee or night watchman in charge. The state is governed by law, but the world is anarchic.

In such a world, needs rather than wishes rule, and even a liberal power such as the United States is not exempt from the struggle for survival. Such a struggle means looking unsentimentally at the human condition, which, in turn, requires a good deal of unpleasantness.
Liberals be warned, you won't like Kaplan's article.