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Word Count: 324
THE BALANCE OF POWER THEORY The most critical and obvious feature of international affairs is its state of anarchy The international stage features many indepent actors each seeking their own best interest and security With no sovereign body to govern over these actors it would seem that the system would never be capable of attaining any control However this is not the reality of the system we have seen in history that it is possible to restrain the players It is said to be as a result of the concept of the Balance Of Power which dictates the actions of states and provides a basis of control that states use when dealing with each other This essay is aimed at investigating the concept of the balance of power and will in turn discuss the following points The use of the BOP concept to explain the behaviour of states The ideal behaviour of states in the BOP system and the problems of BOP analysis The concept of the BOP can be a useful tool in explaining the behaviour of states Mostly because it is founded on the theory that all states act to preserve thier own self interest If they are to do this they must prevent domination by any other state which leads to the assumption that they must build up power and form alliances Throughout history we can see the BOP concept in action The clearest example of the BOP concept can be found in the Cold War In the Cold War the two superpowers the US and the USSR held a stable world balance between them Both states sought to deter domination by the other through a build up of arms and through the creation of strong alliance systems Under the BOP theory the logic of the Cold War stratagies and alliances seems apparent
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