This four articles. David Baldwin’s (2018) articleThis four articles. David Baldwin’s (2018) article

This essay contains analysis of the following four articles. David Baldwin’s (2018) article embraces the revolution of power analysisfrom the perspective of viewing it as resources to the new notion of relations. Alongside with discussing the new approach, Baldwin also addresses the complexity of its dimensions and problems driven by the classical national power approach. The article of Johnson and his colleagues (2015) assesses the deterrence theory through the lens of extended general deterrence and provide us with quantitative data for its support.  Robert Gilpin’s (1988) article reviews the theory of hegemonic war first presented by Thucydides, and deduces its applicability to general trends taking place in modern international politics. Focusing on this theory he then makes an attempt to forecast another backlash in the current era of nuclear weapons, yet with no distinct prediction on potential behavior of states. Lieber and Alexander’s (2005) article state that despite the forecast of a number of international relations theorists on inevitable balancing, major actors of the system are not likely to undermine the dominant position of United States in the status quo due to several reasons they have listed. What unites these articles is that all of them touch the topic of power in international relations through different approaches of power analysis. It is presented in David Baldwin’s (2018) article that instead of considering power as elements of states’ property, new idea embraces the behavior of one actor, which can result in the change of behavior of the second.   New approach implies a number of dimensions of power, which are based on states’ intentions, beliefs and predispositions. Baldwin states that notwithstanding the emergence of new relational approach and its active penetration into power analysis, it still cannot move the property concept of power due to its deep roots. Such situation leads to certain analysis problems. Conducting an analysis based on elements of national power, limits the knowledge on fungibility of power resources and their potential. The absence of etalon that assists in measurement calculations also creates difficulties in assessing the state’s capability. Moreover, actors’ intentions are being highly underestimated in such an approach of power analysis. (Baldwin 2018)According to the article of Johnson and his colleagues (2015), success of the extended general deterrence depends on two features. First, state should be able to raise the costs for potential challenger to start a conflict, thus threatening it away, since the outcome for the latter would be much less that the status quo. Second, potential challenger should believe that defender have enough resources to cover the costs of engaging in conflict. Johnson and his colleagues suggest the convenient way to assess defenders’ capability and credibility by considering actors who have signed the defense pacts. According to empirical results emanated from the study of extended general deterrence, the success rate of the defense pacts are linked to following characteristics: alliance with an actor possessing extended military capabilities, and active engagement alongside with greater investments in peace time military coordination. (Johnson et al. 2015)The assessment of the alliance strength presented in the article of Johnson and his colleagues are tied to the amount and extensiveness of military resources that states posses. According to Baldwin (2016), such an approach creates certain limitations and fails to be effective. The example he presented in his article was related to Vietnam War. Author believes that the reason for aforementioned crisis taking place was the interest of policymakers’ in short term goals, which resulted in ignorance of relational means of power. (Baldwin 2018) Obviously, implementing the relational approach to the given quantitative analysis would create certain difficulties due to its varied dimensions and no agreed systematics of their measurement. Yet, the structural approach to the observation creates doubts of whether the conclusions of it would give us the full picture. The Thucydides’ theory of hegemonic war discussed in the article of Robert Gilpin (1988) consists of several assumptions. First, conflicts in the international system emerge due to power asymmetries. Second, the system remains stable as long as the primary preferences of dominant actors are not threatened. And finally, the advantageous position of dominant player becomes vulnerable if there is a significant systemic change in existing economy and technology. According to Gilpin (1988), hegemonic war is considered to be unique since it covering both politic and economic affairs it transforms the system entirely, thus creating a new hierarchical order. Thucydides observation of Peloponnesian War is an example of major systemic change. The conflict between dominant Sparta and rising Athens touched economic, political and technological aspects of the system and dramatically reshaped the Greek World. (Gilpin 1988)Gilpin (1988) then shows the applicability of Thucydides ancient theory to the modern world by the examples of Thirty Years War, Hundred Years’ War, WWI, and WWII. It becomes incomprehensible to me that despite the fact that Gilpin identified the inability of the theory to predict the emergence of hegemonic war, he makes an attempt to forecast the hierarchical struggle of states in the world after nuclear revolution. Although author had not come up with clear prediction, after presenting the limitations, the aforementioned step seems out of turn. The article of Lieber and Alexander (2005) presents several reasons for balancing behavior of actors against the United States not taking place, as it was earlier expected by a number of theorists to happen after the collapse of the Soviet Union. The first reason than contradicts theorists’ prediction lies in the reduction of the levels of resource mobilization by some of the key players in international system. Another reason suggests that what theorists regard as soft balancing in current system are in fact diplomatic frictions that were taking place even before the rapid transformation in US foreign policy behavior after the September 11. Finally, scholars believe that the aforementioned shift in US behavior would encourage other actors to commit themselves to balancing process. In reality however, brute acting model of the US is targeted to rouge states, and this behavior corresponds to other states’ interests as well. (Lieber and Alexander 2005)Moreover, Lieber and Alexander (2005) believe that actors in the international system share the vision of dominant state regarding the containment of potential nuclear proliferators. This opinion might be a good response to the unanswered question of Gilpin (1988) showing that the emergence of hegemonic war in the era of nuclear weapons is unlikely. Yet, one cannot assure that actions of the nuclear club might not get out of control. To conclude with all of the aforementioned authors in given articles touch upon a topic of power in international relations in one sense or another. While David Baldwin describes the revolution in power analysis, other stick to either relational or resource approach in constructing their arguments. Johnson and his colleagues address the power in international relations through the study of deterrence theory. Robert Gilpin does the same but through the prism of hegemonic war theory.  Finally, Lieber and Alexander touch cover the same topic through the observation of balancing trends among actors in international relations.