Perspectives on Foreign Intervention in Contemporary Politics
The world of politics is a fast moving one; what is true one moment may not be true of the next. Unfortunately, the full scholarly process is not always well suited to dissecting swiftly moving issues, as good scholarship is based upon careful reflection and critical review—time consuming processes. However, sometimes it is necessary for scholars to provide advice on the go, as situations evolve and develop in real time. These judgments may lack the meticulously researched analysis that is possible when events are viewed in hindsight. However, these judgments are no less important, as they will often determine how political actors respond to changing events.
With the current state of global affairs, it is almost impossible not to address the variety of perspectives on the place and polices of foreign intervention. Such dialogues are contrasted between an understanding of the moral rights of the state. These two camps are contrasted in the following way. The first, arguing for intervention, believes that the state has a moral obligation to represent its idealized values in the global environment. As a result, intervention is required to promote and maintain these values. The second, arguing against intervention, believes that the state has a moral obligation to respect the sovereignty of foreign nations. Such positions are only made more complicated by the faith placed in institutions and other non-state actors to address such issues. However, the reality of global politics requires that states make decisive choices on such matter, and bear the consequences these choices can have on both international affairs and domestic politics. This is not merely a simple question of two perspectives, but rather, how these perspectives balance and effect actual policy.
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