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Month: July 2012

Theorizing the Rise of, and American Response to, a Growing China

The United States has, since the collapse of the Soviet Union in the early 1990s, dominated the international environment as the preeminent hegemon. Recent developments, however, such as a domestic debt crisis, unpopular and costly wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, and the rise of new regional powers exerting hegemony, have shown that American unipolarity is giving way to a return to a bipolar environment. On the forefront of the new regional powers rising to challenge American hegemony is China.  China is a massive country with a strong and rapidly-growing economy. Recently, it has begun to develop its military strength and strengthen its international ties, signaling it’s want for a growth of influence in the international world. Thus, The United States has, and will need to continue to in the future, develop a new strategy to deal with the rise of China. With its rise comes a number of questions, such as the nature of the international environment, what is stipulated by the concept of the balance of power, and how the United States can implement strategy to balance with and contain China.

An unbalanced Chinese sphere of influence in Asia, akin to the United States position in the Western Hemisphere, would have far reaching effects. By being able to influence its neighbor’s behaviors through either diplomatically or militarily coercive actions, it would be much more secure at home[1]. By being an economically and militarily dominant power, it would not need to worry about the threat that its neighbors present to its sovereignty, just as the United States does not worry about the military threat presented from Mexico or Canada. With its borders, and control on the regional balance of power, secured, China would be able to look outward towards the global international environment. China’s economic integration into the world market in the past decade has been massive, and its strong economic growth is buoyed upon international trade and commerce. Further growth would spark demand for more resources, materials, and markets. It would thus make much strategic sense for the Chinese to inject itself into regions where resources are abundant, or where new markets could be open and exploited. A prudent Chinese strategist, as Stephen Walt puts it, would “want to have the capacity to safeguard vital sea lanes of communication and affect the political calculations in other key areas”[2].

China’s foray into the international environment is already being clearly seen in Africa, where it has been expanding its economic and political ties with countries across the continent and rapidly growing its influence. In 2009, China surpassed the United States as Africa’s largest trading partner, and has invested heavily in the economies and infrastructures of numerous African nations, with Chinese companies funding infrastructure deals worth more than fifty billion dollars a year[3]. The low prices of Chinese made weaponry and military equipment has caused an increasing number of African countries to shift their source of supply from traditional providers such as Russia to China. This new reliance upon imported Chinese weaponry and military equipment has strengthened the economic and military ties between China and its African customers, who also need training and support from the Chinese to proper maintain and utilize their purchases[4]. The expansion of soft power in Africa can be seen in China’s engagement of a kind of ‘health diplomacy’, where more than 15,000 Chinese doctors have, between 1960 and 2005, been sent to help treat cases in more than 47 African countries. In this period of time, more than 170 million patients have been treated[5]. Africa now hosts three Chinese cultural centers, with one in Egypt, Benin, and Mauritius. This, mixed with the efforts of the Confucius Institute, which has 20 centers distributed in 13 African countries focusing on the promotion of Chinese language and culture, has helped expand the soft image of China and the Chinese people.[6]

China’s push for an expansion of influence in Africa makes much sense, as it is a relatively unexploited market, and controls vast amounts of resources. Africa ranks first or second globally in the abundance of a number of minerals, and many African countries are highly dependent on the export of those minerals. China would gain much economically by developing ties with those countries and becoming an importer of their minerals. The economic ties from such trade would also manage to strengthen the diplomatic bonds between the two trading partners. More importantly, however, is that Africa provides China with 30 percent of its oil needs. In an age of growing oil insecurity, and with Chinese demand for oil becoming larger, China needs to secure itself in regions which could serve its needs in the long-term.    Of course, China’s foray into Africa means that it is decreasing American hegemony in the region, and presents a challenge to American needs[7]. By building its soft power, funding projects, and increasing its diplomatic and economic ties with African nations, China is securing its resource needs in a region which the United States will need to look for in a future of strong economic competition and decreasing resources.

In addition to Africa, China has begun to move into Latin America and the Western Hemisphere seeking influence. Trade between China and Latin America skyrocketed from 10 billion dollars in 2000 to over 140 billion in 2008. While still below the figures of trade between the United States and Latin America, this is still a significant figure which shows that Chinese interest and involvement in the region is increasing steadily. China is now Latin America’s third largest trading partner after the United States and the European Union, and its clout in the region can be expected to grow still. China’s involvement and engagement in Latin America have so far been sensitive to US perceptions: the United States supported China’s bid to become an observer of the Organization of American States in 2004 and admitted it into the Inter-American Development Bank. The potential for bilateral tensions growing over time, however, is large, especially if the growth of China remains unchecked and the shifting balance of power begins to threaten the United States[8]. This region is of special concern because it is in the United States ‘backyard’. The United States presently has no threats from the Western Hemisphere, and thus can focus freely on projecting its power globally and dealing with security threats overseas. Stephen Walt argues this point in saying that, “once China established a secure sphere of influence, it would be easier for Beijing to forge closer political ties with countries in the Western hemisphere, some of whom have long resented U.S. dominance. It does not take a lot of imagination to see where this leads: for the first time since the 19th century, the United States might have to face the prospect of a rival great power with a significant military presence in the Western hemisphere. When you remember that the Soviet attempt to place nuclear missiles in Cuba brought the two countries closer to war than at any other time during the Cold War, you get an idea of the potential for trouble here.” Should the United States and China enter conflict, and China have partners in the Western Hemisphere, the United States’ position of security would be severely compromised and weaken its position to combat China. Of course, even in times of simple competition between China and the United States would Chinese investment in Latin America present a problem, because the United States would have to shift focus from attempting to balance the power of Asia against China to also investing in competing with it in the West. This would drain resources away from the effort in containing China in Asia[9].

Observing China’s actions across the globe make it apparent that it has begun to project its power globally, and has begun to seek more international influence. Its powerful economic growth and military development signal that it seeks to dominate the East Asian region. The ramifications of China’s rise to power are serious: it is beginning to shift the balance of power away from the United States in terms of global hegemony. Thus, the world is gradually shifting into bipolarity. A hegemon in the international arena is any predominant state. Hegemony can be achieved through the growth of a state’s economy, its expansion of soft power, and the expansion of its hard (military) power[10]. Since the collapse of the Soviet Union in the early 1990s, the United States has emerged as the world’s preeminent hegemon, able to exert influence and project power across the globe. The global balance of power was almost entirely shifted towards the United States.  The balance of power is a concept used to explain the relative strength of hegemons against each other. The idea behind the balance of power is that states will hesitate to start a war with an adversary whose power to fight and win wars is equal to their own. If the balance of power is equal between two competing states, the risk of defeat in a war between the two is high for both sides. When a state, or coalition of states, is more powerful than its adversaries, war is more likely, because it is easier for the more powerful side to win. Having the upper-hand in an uneven balance of power serves as an incentive for a state to attack its rival, because it knows that it will be able to win and thus exert its will upon that rival. The nature of the international ‘system’ is according to how power is balanced internationally.[11] When power is concentrated in one country, the system is referred to as ‘unipolar’. When power is distributed evenly between two states, it is considered ‘bipolar’, and when it is distributed amongst a number of states, it is considered ‘multipolar’. With the various polarities of the international system come theories regarding each, and differing opinions on what type of international system is the most stable.

Supporters of bipolarity argue that, because in a bipolar system if either side begins to gain strength or position, the consequences are immediately evident. This visibility of the shifting of power, bipolar supporters argue, makes it the most stable sort of system over the long-term. The two sides are able to, as Kenneth Waltz argues, “moderate the other’s use of violence and to absorb possibly destabilizing changes that emanate from uses of violence that they do not or cannot control.”[12] In the bipolar system, there is a clear difference in the amount of power held by each pole compared with that held by other state actors, and because of this power disparity each of the two sides is able to focus its activity exclusively on the other. Thus, each can anticipate the others actions, and try to preserve the balance of power in order to preserve itself and the system. Supporters point to the Cold War era as a vindication of the bipolar system: the United States and the Soviet Union never went to war, and the Cold War era was one of the most peaceful (in terms of war causalities and severity) in recorded history. While nuclear deterrence also played a large role in preventing a war between the two sides, the focus and attention each country gave to the other enabled them to both play off of each other in an attempt to stabilize the balance of power and prevent conflict. Because both side therefore knew that it would not be able to gain hegemonic dominance over the other, they engaged in diplomacy or diplomatic maneuvering as opposed to direct military conflict in order to subvert the other. Critics of bipolarity, however, point to the Cold War era as one of mutual suspicion and proxy conflict. The United States fought costly wars in Vietnam and Korea in order to prevent the spread of communism, and in extension the influence of the Soviet sphere. Critics also argue that, even while the bipolar world of the Cold War did not result in conflict, the chance for miscalculation and misinterpretation in any bipolar system is too great to risk: the world came incredibly close to nuclear war when it ‘stared into the abyss’ during the Cuban Missile Crisis. Thus, the world of bipolarity has both its supporters, who claim that two states attempting to maintain and even a balance of power between them will create the most stable international environment, and critics, who say that the chance for miscalculation leading to conflict between those two nations is too great of a risk[13].

The world for the past decade has been dominated by the hegemony of the United States. This sort of hegemonic domination is seen in a system of unipolarity, where one state is the preeminent power. Supporters of a unipolar system, who are referred to as hegemonic stability theorists, claim that dominance by a single hegemon leads to the most stable international system. The historian Paul Kennedy argues that it was the hegemony of Britain in the 19th century and the United States in the immediate post-World War 2 era that led to the greatest stability. Other supporters of the theory, such as Robert Keohane argue that hegemonic states are willing to pay the price of enforcing norms, unilaterally if necessary, to ensure the continuation of the system that benefits them. When the hegemon loses power and declines, they argue, the stability in the system is jeopardized. By having a single dominant power, however, the international system can be played in such a way by that hegemon that no other power could come to the same level of strength, and thus the hegemon would never be challenged. With a position of unrivaled power and influence, that country can then use its powers to influence the world according to its dictates. Theorists point to the example of the ‘benevolent hegemon’ which attempts to spread international peace, stability, and foster economic growth and human development. They argue that the United States served this role during its moment of unipolarity, by promoting human rights, fighting wars in Yugoslavia to prevent genocide, and attempting to slow the spread of nuclear weapons. Critics of unipolarity, however, argue that no country can remain a global hegemon for long without overstretching itself. The costs of intervention and attempting to influence global politics are simply too much for any country to bear. The unipolar hegemon tends to become too ‘confident’ with its capabilities in the international system, feels as though, because it is such a dominant power, it need not recruit the full assistance of allies or other nations, and thus takes unilateral action when attempting to influence politics. This helps to weaken the hegemon’s strength, because it has taken on the full burden and responsibility of its course of action. Critics also argue that, when any single power becomes preeminent in the international arena, other countries attempt to balance against it. Regional powers will become gradually more powerful and attempting to influence geopolitics and the hegemon will not be able to successfully deal with all the challenges to its lead[14]. Indeed, examples of these criticisms can be seen in the actions of the United States over the past decade: a very costly invasion of Afghanistan and Iraq, that latter of which was without UN endorsement and only a small contingent of supporting nations, which helped drive the United States into a serious debt issue. Meanwhile, regional powers such as Brazil, India, and China have been growing more powerful and the United States has thus far been unable to balance the power, and check the growing hegemony, of all three.

As evidenced by China’s growth in international influence and power, the United States seems to be leaving its ‘unipolar moment’. China’s foray into Africa shows that it now holds the capabilities to be a power capable of global projection, able to influence the geopolitics of another continent. Globally, as Stephen Walt argues, American influence is beginning to wane. Internationally unpopular wars in Afghanistan and Iraq have decreased American soft power[15]. Although the American economy remains the most powerful in the world, its weakened state has brought about a decline in economic clout as well as doubts about the true capabilities and security of the nature of the American capitalist system. The issue with the budget, as well as domestic deadlock, has alienated some who viewed the American model of governance to be emulated, thereby further decreasing the influence of the United States. The budget issue has also brought about talks and action on cutting defense spending, thereby decreasing American power projection and hard power. The United States thus is losing power and influence in a time when other nations, especially China, are gaining both. The prospects for the continuation of American unipolar hegemony seem grim, as the world is moving towards an ‘American-Pacific’ century.  While the United States is in no way going to be overtaken militarily or even economically in the short run, its sole domination of the world stage is going to change into sharing that stage with other actors. Thus, American strategists need to develop a strategy for dealing with this new bipolarity[16].

As mentioned earlier, a primary focus during times of bipolarity is on the balance of power. By keeping the balance of power between two powers equal, neither power can gain more hegemony than the other, and thus neither can afford to enter conflict with the other. Therefore, the international system becomes stable. In order to balance power with a rival, a nation must seek to increase its relative strength with that rival so that the other country cannot find more benefit than costs when determining whether to go to war. In response, the other country will attempt to increase its relative strength, so that the power ratios between the two nations balance. Of course, relative strength does not necessarily mean just military hard-power. An important part of the balance of power is the formation of alliances and coalitions to serve as a larger-front in a global balance of power. Each side will attempt to find strategic allies whose combined power will match, or surpass, that of their rival. Furthermore, each side will attempt to find allies in strategic locations, such as in regions where oil or other resources for building the economy and military are ample or chokeholds of trade and commerce. By doing so, they can gain the benefits of securing those resources or vital points, gaining more leverage over their opponent, and therefore deterring their opponent from taking military action. Importantly, each side will attempt to find allies within the regions of their opponent. By doing so, they will present a more direct and local geopolitical threat to their opponent, as opposed to a more distant overseas one. This will decrease the security of their opponent, thereby forcing it focus more locally on the direct threat as opposed to overseas towards the power it’s balancing against. This would limit the ability to globally reach and influence overseas geopolitics for the opponent, because they are focused on their own regional geopolitics, and thus decrease the risk that the opponent would engage in conflict. Having allies close to the opponent would also serve as a great deterrence: it is easy to make threats and act coercively when a potential invasion or military threat would be coming from overseas, but it is much more disconcerting when that threat of invasion is from your own backyard.

This sort of alliance building and attempting to balance power was seen clearly during the Cold War era. The United States led an alliance called NATO, which sought to balance power against the Soviet Union-led bloc of nations called the Warsaw Pact. Each country sought allies in strategic locations: the United States formed close ties with Western Europe, which bordered the Soviet Union, as well as with South Korea, Japan, Australia, Turkey, Iran, and Israel. These countries, essentially forming an alliance system that surrounded the Soviet Union, were used in an attempt to contain the growth of the Soviet sphere of influence and present a bloc of nations whose collective power would outmatch that of the Soviet Union. Meanwhile, the Soviet Union found allies in Eastern Europe, as well as an important ally in Cuba. By having Cuba within its sphere, the Soviet Union presented a direct threat to the United States in its own ‘backyard’. It was because of these systems of alliances and power balancing that neither the United States nor the Soviet Union calculated that war was a winnable option, and thus neither side determined that war was an appropriate course to take. Because both sides also had allies on each other’s ‘doorsteps’, thereby presenting a more direct security challenge, they both tread more lightly and with a lighter hand when dealing with each other.

This reliance upon utilizing a bloc of allies to facilitate the balancing of power is also referred to as ‘offshore balancing’[17]. This sort of strategy does not require any direct involvement of hard power in the region that a country is interested in: rather, that country employs the use of regional allies to achieve the goal. The reason that these allies would accept such a role is that the goals of both the regional allies and the central power mirror each other. For example, in the case with China and the United States, the United States wants to constrain the growth of China so that it can balance its power. The United States’ allies in the Asia-Pacific region, such as India, Japan, South Korea, and Australia, fear the rise of China because it presents a local, direct threat to their own growing power. Therefore, the United States employs the help of these allies to contain and counter China without having to necessarily send a large force to the Pacific to counter China itself, because the end state meets both the United States and its ally’s goals.

The United States’ focus has thus begun to shift towards China. The United States has already, according to Stephen Walt, moved the bulk of its naval deployments to the Asia-Pacific and Indian Oceans. Recent developments include President Obama declaring that 2,500 Marines would be sent to a new base in Australia, and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton going on a diplomatic visit to Myanmar, a move that analysts say clearly intends to encourage the regime there to continue its efforts to reform and wean the government from Chinese influence[18]. These moves signal that the United States is beginning to up its commitment and spread its influence in the region. While 2,500 Marines won’t shift the balance of power in the Asia-Pacific region, it indicates that the United States intends to remain a player in the geopolitics of the area, and thus reassure regional allies. The deployment of the bulk of the American fleet sends a strong message to China, which is a growing naval power, that the United States will attempt to counter any belligerent or coercive action from the Chinese navy.  The South China Sea, whose territories are claimed and disputed by China, Taiwan, Vietnam, Malaysia, and the Philippines, is a focal point for growing Chinese power in the region. The Sea is the gateway to the Indian Ocean, linking the oil fields of the Middle East with the factories of East Asia. Over 80 percent of China’s oil imports flow through the Strait of Malacca at the South China Sea’s southern end. There is much speculation that large quantities of oil and other untapped resources are available in the South China Sea. The Chinese have thus increased their claims to the region, with a hope to dominate it akin to American dominance in the Caribbean in the early 20th century[19]. If they manage to do so, their hegemony and clout in the Pacific region would be much more secure, because they would control a pivotal trade lane of the Pacific. With this in their control, and the ability to thus cut trade across the entire region, other regional powers would not attempt to threaten China’s hegemony, for they would fear the economic ramifications of this cut in trade. The presence of the American navy will thus buoy its allies by reassuring them that Chinese naval strength will be countered and balanced, and thus Chinese claims to the South China Sea cannot be realized. By engaging Myanmar, if ties are strengthened with the United States it can be used as another ‘buffer’ nation around China in an attempt to contain its growth. The United States has meanwhile been strengthening its ties with other regional allies in order to contain China and constrain its growth. The United States enjoys a strong diplomatic, economic, and military alliance with Japan, South Korea, and Australia. These three nations, whose are all growing regional powers with significant hegemony, all feel threatened by the growth of China and its desire to dominate the Asia-Pacific. The United States has moved to engage the region’s multilateral institutions, such as the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) forum, in order to increase its participation and thus influence in the area[20].  Meanwhile, the United States has been attempting to strengthen economic ties with Asian nations. As Secretary of State Hillary Clinton put it, “Our emphasis on the economic work of APEC is in keeping with our broader commitment to elevate economic statecraft as a pillar of American foreign policy. Increasingly, economic progress depends on strong diplomatic ties, and diplomatic progress depends on strong economic ties.”[21] As seen in Africa with China’s growing economic ties, the United States will do well to increase its influence by continuing to play an important role in the economies of the Asian nations.

Of course, the assumption that balancing power with and offshore balancing against an opponent is the best course of action comes largely from the Realist camp of theorists. A major proponent of offshore balancing, Stephen Walt, classifies himself as a Realist, as do other prominent theorists such as John Mearsheimer, Barry Posen, and Robert Pape[22]. Of course, the tenets of offshore balancing fit into that of the Realist perspective regardless of who supports it. Realists view the world as a struggle for power between competing states. The central focus of any state is to increase its power relative to each other, because doing so maximizes its security. The focus on security is of utmost important: the primary focus of each country is its sovereignty, or ability to be the sole actor who can make decisions regarding what happens within its borders. Since the treaty of Westphalia in 1648, the concept of National Sovereignty has been one of the most dominant in the international system: it assumes that each nation is an equal, that each state has the right to self determination, and that no state can intervene on the affairs of another state. Thus, in order to protect its sovereignty, each state will attempt to increase its power because the only way for another state to influence the politics of that state would to be through military action. The fear of military action is the driving force behind the attempt to balance power. Realists do not believe that any other part of the international arena is important when it comes to determining how states act: the simple reality is that each state seeks the maximization of its power[23].

China’s actions do play into the Realist school of thought: they have, in the pursuit of increased hegemony, increased their military strength relative to their neighbors. Meanwhile, they are increasing the boldness of their claims, and have been flexing their military muscle in the South China Sea. These actions are in an attempt to display their growing power to their neighbors, therefore displaying that they pose a potential threat to their sovereignty, and thus gaining leverage over them. This pursuit of power is something that is prescribed by Realists. The United States’ reaction also largely falls into Realist lines. Offshore balancing and the balancing of power are all actions taken to limit the relative strength of China. Again, this focus on power falls into the Realist view on what states focus on. Yet other actions taken by the United States to engage China have fallen more into the camp which Liberal theorists would argue are more effective. While realists feel that hard-power is of sole importance in international relations, liberals believe that economics also play a major role in influencing the international arena, and American economic engagement in Asia plays into this idea[24]. The economic ties between the United States and China remain incredibly strong, and this economic deterrent could serve as powerful a force as the balance-of-power and nuclear deterrent. China’s government draws much of its current popularity and legitimacy from its booming economy, and much of Chinas growth in the international environment can be accounted for this economic growth.  Stopping trade between the United States and China would thus have serious ramifications from domestic Chinese politics and international development, and any conflict between the United States and China would cause such a drop-off in trade and commerce. Meanwhile, the United States continues to build economic ties with its allies across the Asia Pacific, and have engaged economic institutions in order to strengthen its clout and influence. Engaging multilateral institutions, such as the APEC forum and ASEAN, also play into the theories of the Liberals. They believe that institutions are a better forum for international cooperation and discourse, and can create a more stable world than bilateral power-struggles[25].

The rise of China and the United States attempts to counter it thus play into a number of theories and ideas. The United States has begun to seek to strengthen its alliance system to counter and contain China via offshore balancing, while China itself has begun to expand its reach across the globe and build up its hard power. The world is gradually entering a bipolar world, with the United States and its coalition of Asia-Pacific region allies squaring off against a China which seeks to dominate the region. The coming century, political analysts now declare, will be an “American Pacific” century.

Works Cited

[1] Walt, Stephen. “The End of the American Era”. http://nationalinterest.org/print/article/the-end-the-american- era-6037. Nationalinterest.org. October 25th, 2011. Retrieved November 5th, 2011

[2] Walt, Stephen. “The End of the American Era”. http://nationalinterest.org/print/article/the-end-the-american-era-6037. Nationalinterest.org. October 25th, 2011. Retrieved November 5th, 2011

[3]  “Out of Africa”. http://www.china.org.cn/culture/2009-02/17/content_17288743.htm. China Daily. Retrieved November 7th, 2011

[4] “Russian, Chinese weapons compete in Africa”. http://www.upiasia.com/Security/2008/12/19/russian_chinese_weapons_compete_in_africa/5472/. Upiasia.com. Retrieved November 7th, 2011

[5] Thompson, Drew. “China’s soft power in Africa: From the “Beijing Consensus” to health diplomacy”. jamestown.org. Retrieved November 11th, 2011

[6] “Confucius Institute Bridges Friendship between China and Africa”. http://english.cri.cn/4406/2009/02/17/1122s454769.htm. cri.com.cn. Retrieved November 11th, 2011

[7] The Chinese in Africa: Trying to pull together”. http://www.economist.com/node/18586448. The Economist. Retrieved November 14th, 2011

[8] “US-China Relations in a Global Context: Latin America and the Caribbean”. http://www.gwu.edu/~sigur/assets/docs/us_china_dialogue_051209/7_Daniel_Erikson.pdf. George Washington University. Retrieved November 15th, 2011

[9] Walt, Stephen. “The End of the American Era”. http://nationalinterest.org/print/article/the-end-the-american-era-6037. Nationalinterest.org. October 25th, 2011. Retrieved November 5th, 2011

[10] Wingst, Karen A, Ivan Arreguin-Toft, “Essentials of International Relations”, W W Norton & Co Inc. 2010. Page 33.

[11] “The International System”. http://www.wwnorton.com/college/polisci/essentials-of-international-relations5/ch/04/summary.aspx. W W Nortion & Co. Retrieved November 20th, 2011

[12] Waltz, Kenneth, “The Stability of a Bipolar World”. http://www.jstor.org/pss/20026863. Jstor. Retrieved November 20th, 2011

[13] “The International System”. http://www.wwnorton.com/college/polisci/essentials-of-international-relations5/ch/04/summary.aspx. W W Nortion & Co. Retrieved November 20th, 2011

[14] “The International System”. http://www.wwnorton.com/college/polisci/essentials-of-international-relations5/ch/04/summary.aspx. W W Nortion & Co. Retrieved November 20th, 2011

[15] Walt, Stephen. “The End of the American Era”. http://nationalinterest.org/print/article/the-end-the-american- era-6037. Nationalinterest.org. October 25th, 2011. Retrieved November 5th, 2011

[16] Kaplan, Robert D. & Stephen S. “America Primed”. http://nationalinterest.org/print/article/america-primed-4892. The National Interest. Retrieved November 25th, 2011

[17] Layne, Christoper. “From Preponderance to Offshore Balancing: America’s Future Grand Strategy”. International Security. Vol 22, No 1. Page 88.

[18] Walt, Stephen. “The End of the American Era”. http://nationalinterest.org/print/article/the-end-the-american-era-6037. Nationalinterest.org. October 25th, 2011. Retrieved November 5th, 2011

[19] Kaplan, Robert D. & Stephen S. “America Primed”. http://nationalinterest.org/print/article/america-primed-4892. The National Interest. Retrieved November 25th, 2011

[20], 21 Clinton, Hillary. “Americas Pacific Century”. Foreign Policy. Retrieved November 29th, 2011

[22] Walt, Stephen. “A Bandwagon for Offshore Balancing?” http://walt.foreignpolicy.com/posts/2011/12/01/a_bandwagon_for_offshore_balancing Foreign Policy.December 1, 2011. Retrieved December 2, 2011.

[23] Rose, Gideon. “Neoclassical Realism and Theories of Foreign Policy. Cambridge University Press. Retrieved December 1st, 2011

[24] Moravcsik, Andrew. “Liberalism and International Relations Theory”.                 https://www.princeton.edu/~amoravcs/library/liberalism_working.pdf. Harvard University. Retrieved December 2nd, 2011

[25] Moravcsik, Andrew. “Liberalism and International Relations Theory”.                 https://www.princeton.edu/~amoravcs/library/liberalism_working.pdf. Harvard University. Retrieved

Introspection # 1 “All the Experiences”

Something that I think about often, and which constantly amazes me, is the vast amount of experiences which are created and had at every instant and at every location. It’s something which is, perhaps, a bit difficult to conceptualize. In many ways, depending on your perception of it, these experiences might seem trivial, unimportant, or passing. Yet for me, at least, the massive sum of these experiences is so incredible, so beautiful, and also so enormous that my limited human comprehension cannot fully appreciate or truly acknowledge it. Considering what thinking about this has done for me, I feel that it’s important for people to experience the same wonder and amazement that I do when I contemplate this matter. Doing so is an incredibly humbling experience, in that you begin to realize how ‘mediocre’ uniqueness is, yet simultaneously very beautiful when you realize how equally unique mediocrity is. I’m sure that this statement comes off as confusing and contradictory, but let me explain both my thoughts on the matter and the matter itself.

I feel that the best way to explain the subject of my thoughts is to provide examples of what I was thinking. I’ll begin by giving an example of what I had first started thinking about when I had considered this concept, and which explains the concept well. Consider yourself for a moment. Think about everything that makes you an individual, everything that makes you unique. Think about the physical form of your body, both how it looks and how it feels. Consider your scars, your bruises, your ailments and allergies, all the broken bones and fractures you have ever had. Now think about your personality, what you’re known for and who you’re known as. What do you enjoy to do, what do you not enjoy to do, and why do you feel those ways. Think about your interests, what you want to do with your life. What is your favorite subject, what your hobby is, what are your pet peeves and what annoys you. If you’re religious, think about what your faith means to you and what that faith says. If you subscribe to a political position or a certain philosophy, think about that and consider how it shapes your life and your perceptions of the world. Now think of all your friends, those who are closest to you and those who are not. Think of all your experiences with them, all the good times and all the bad times. Think of your love interests, how wonderful or painful they’ve made life for you, and everything you’ve had together. Think of your family, your childhood, your school experiences, and your adult life. Think of all these things I’ve listed, plus everything else which makes you who you are, as experiences. The sum of all of these experiences is what makes you into a unique, special individual. You’ve lived a life unlike that of anybody else, a feat which in itself is incredibly special and incredibly beautiful. You are, in a sense, the only of your kind. There is nobody who has had the same experiences as you, you are unique.

And yet, you are completely not. For, despite being a completely unique individual who holds sole claim to your experiences, you are among 7 billion other human beings who have sole claim over theirs. Your experiences might be unique, but you are not unique in having the experiences. Consider a wedding, and how special that moment is to the two getting wed. It is completely and entirely their moment, their experience, developed and designed around them. Yet the vast majority of adults are married, and in being so have had their own weddings, their own special moments. With this example, the contradictory nature of what I had previously stated seems to be withering away. A person’s wedding was unique, but it was a wedding like all of the others. Similarly, it was unique and special like how all of the others were equally unique and special. It was, therefore, mediocre, in a sense not unique, in its uniqueness. And yet, conversely, because it was unique, and thus unlike all the others despite still being a wedding, it was unique in its mediocrity.

This is where the concept becomes so impressive, and also starts to become outside the limits of comprehension, for me. Think back to everything that you had thought of earlier, everything that made you a unique individual. Multiply the sum of those experiences by 7 billion. 7 billion unique relationships, 7 billion different families and childhoods, special moments, careers, ideas, beliefs, faiths, wants, needs, desires. Think about all of your friends, how intimately you know the closest. Think about everything you know about them, how you perceive them. It’s difficult, after a point, to be able to know everything about all of them to understand all of their experiences. But also consider how intimate that knowledge is, how special their experiences are to you and to them. How much they mean to you and them, how intensely they shape your lives. Now try to do that with 7 billion separate, unique individuals. It’s impossible for our human mind to do, but all of those experiences are there. Its remarkable to consider.

This recognition of the vast expanse of experiences being had goes even farther when you begin to consider the existence of everything around us. Think about our planet and its biology and geology, think about the planets around us. Think about Jupiter and Saturn, the massive gas giants which orbit our average ‘Yellow Dwarf’ star. Think about the inner planets, about the inner most planet Mercury which orbits the sun in a racing 88 Earth days, about the greenhouse-gas disaster of Venus, which has a toxic atmosphere of mostly Carbon Dioxide and a surface temperature of 92 times that of Earth. Consider how unique these qualities are to these planets, how special their development and evolution were. Our solar system is magnificent, in its composition and its formation, but its not alone. Astronomers have estimated that every star has at least a single planet in orbit around it. Even more remarkably, there is estimated to be at least 100,000 planetoids larger than Pluto for each individual star system moving in free-flight through interstellar space. The number of worlds is massive. Over 400 billion stars exist in our Milky Way galaxy, and hundreds of billions of distant galaxies have been discovered in the night sky. think of all these solar systems, how amazing and unique they each are. Try to imagine the complexity of our own solar system and its orbit and then consider the complexity of another star’s system. How magnificent it must be, but it is just one of trillions. There is nothing truly special about it. In the end, each of these places in space are special in their own unique way, in their history and development and the reasons behind those. But they are all the same thing in the end, they are all planets and all galaxies, just one in a mass of trillions. They are mediocre in their uniqueness, but unique in their mediocrity.

Of course, the incomprehensible and nature of such a massive amount of special experiences happens to make it trivial, unrecognizable to our daily lives. We live reacting to local social and environmental stimuli. You think about and interact with your close friends, your family, your coworkers, and your social circles through the day and through personal and electronic mediums. But you hardly think about the experiences, the daily lives of every other person. How often do you imagine or consider the day of someone from China, or from Kazakhstan, or Ghana, or Argentina. The most trivial aspects which make up the majority of our day is what makes our days unique, our private and public interactions and conduct. Think about your own private moments, and then place yourself in the shoes of an average woman living in North Korea. The experiences are massively different, unique, but all doing the same thing, accomplishing (hopefully) the same ends. You don’t think about this often, because you don’t need to. We only need to rely on (and often mentally can’t rely on anything more than) our local environment. Only when we take actual time to consider the enormity of experiences do we really begin to appreciate them.

The knowledge of such an enormity of experiences happening, if not the conscious recognition of them, does carry some profound implications. Because you are unique, you are an incredibly special individual, in your own way. You have had an incredibly life, because it is entirely and uniquely yours. But if you consider that you are just one of 7 billion other people having lives, you realize that you aren’t the center of the universe. A recognition that we’re all just trying to go by with our day posses a sort of pacifying property. Do upon others as you would wish to be done upon yourself, because the reality is that every other person is living and experiencing just like you. If only the world recognized we were all human, that we were all individuals living their own experiences, global unkindness and greed would disappear. Of course, greed and unkindness, through competition and war, slaughter and deceit, and corruption and inefficiency, is found all across the world. It rules us, and enables those who exploit it personal gain. If only they considered that those they manipulate and those they murder were a person just like them. Even on a more personal level kindness would be more prolific. If you think about the life of the person you’re about to cut off, about his drive home and his own personal frustrations and situations, you might be less likely to interfere so belligerently in his life. You can only imagine what it would be like to you.

It’s an enormous understanding, and it often slips us by as unimportant and unrecognizable. Sitting down and actually contemplating it, however, allows us to see just how important and yet how subtle it can play on our perception of our world. It is an exciting thing to imagine, when imaging the happenings on a distant world or in a distant land. Thinking about all the experiences being had, or which have been had, is magnificent.

Egyptian Democracy and its Implications on U.S. Foreign Policy

The Arab ‘Spring’ (also known as the Arab Rebellions and the Arab Awakening) was a series of movements, demonstrations, and revolutions which swept across the Arab world beginning in December of 2010 and which continued through 2011 into 2012.  These movements dramatically altered the political landscape of the Middle East, ushering in democratic reforms and toppling long-seated autocrats.  In Egypt, Tunisia, and Yemen, demonstrators overthrew dictatorial regimes and have begun the transition into democracy. Morocco, Oman, and Jordan have begun reforming their governmental conduct and are gradually opening up their political systems. In Libya, civil war fighters toppled Muammar Gaddafi and have begun to transition the country into a democratic system. In Syria, government crackdowns against demonstrations calling for the ouster of President Assad have sparked growing civil unrest and the possibility for full-blown civil war. The Arab Spring has demonstrated the Arab people’s growing discontent with autocratic, repressive regimes and longing for popular democracy. While these movements towards democracy are good for the dignity of the Arab people, they raise serious questions about the future and shape of American foreign policy towards the region. Of particular interest is the relationship between the United States and Egypt, which is the most populous and arguably most powerful Arab state. A democratic Egyptian government will conduct foreign policy differently than the previous, autocratic regime under Mubarak. As a result, the United States’ foreign policy leverage, capacity, and strategy will be changed when dealing with a democratic Egypt. Understanding these differences and analyzing potential changes in the politics of the region will enable foreign policy scholars and legislators to develop new strategies for the years to come.

Prior to the Arab Spring, the United States focused much of its attention and resources on Egypt. Under the rule of Presidents Anwar Sadat and Hosni Mubarak, the United States and Egypt became strategic partners. After the 1973 Arab-Israeli war, the two countries sought to enhance relations in order to foster a peace process with Israel. Normal diplomatic relations were reestablished on February 28th, 1974. The United States and Egypt began to build military and economic ties, with the United States providing Egypt with about $19 billion in military aid in the period between 1979 and 2003, as well as over $28 billion in economic and development assistance since 1975. In 1989, Egypt was designated as a ‘Major non-NATO Ally of the United States’. Following the September 11th attacks, Egypt declared strong backing for the United States in its war against international terrorism.[1]

These close ties and military support were used to leverage Egyptian support for stability in the region and were also used to influence regional politics. The Arab League headquarters is in Cairo, and the Secretary General of the League is traditionally an Egyptian. Under a foreign policy favorable towards the United States, these positions would be used to increase American influence in the Arab world and develop policies favoring American standpoints. Egypt was a key partner in maintaining peace in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Sadat’s trip to Israel in 1977, the 1978 Camp David Accords, and the 1979 Egypt-Israel Peace Treaty represented a shift from a strategy of confrontation to one of peace as the strategic political choice in the region. In the Madrid Peace Conference in 1991 hosted by the United States and Russia, Egypt played an important role in negotiations seeking to discuss Middle Eastern peace. During the 1990-1991 Gulf Crisis, Egypt played a leading role. It helped assemble an international coalition against Iraq, and deployed 35,000 of its own troops against Iraq during the fight to liberate Kuwait. The Egyptian contingent was the third largest in the coalition forces, behind the United States and the United Kingdom. Following the war, Egypt signed the Damascus declaration with Syria and the Gulf states, seeking to strengthen Gulf security and cooperation. In 1996, President Mubarak hosted the “Summit of the Peacemakers”, which was attended by President Clinton and other world leaders and which sought to discuss peaceful solutions to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Mubarak held further summits on the issue in 2000 and 2003, meeting with President George W. Bush. Throughout 2004, Egypt worked closely with Israel and the Palestinian Authority to facilitate stability following Israel’s withdrawal from Gaza. Plans for this included an agreement that allowed Egypt to deploy forces along the Philadelphia Corridor in an attempt to control the border and prevent weapons smuggling.[2] Since June of 2007, Egypt also assisted Israel in blockading the Gaza strip from the land, the air, and the sea.

Egyptian-American cooperation was thus very significant in the period before the Arab Spring: the United States provided large amounts of monetary and military assistance to Egypt in return for Egyptian support and regional stability. American support for autocratic Egypt was motivated heavily by the Realist paradigm. Despite the ideological differences between the United States and Egypt and the contradiction between American political ideals and Egyptian political reality, the United States allied with Egypt because of Egyptian hegemony in the region. Egypt is the most populous and arguably most militarily capable Arab state, and thus controls the largest amount of power in the Arab world. Because of this, it is the state most capable to influence regional politics and promote stability, and thus the United States used it as a tool to indirectly influence the region and protect the security of Israel. Indeed, the United States found it easy to deal with, support, and prop up a powerful autocracy which would ensure peace in a volatile and strategically important region, despite human rights violations and a closed political system. Under the rule of President Mubarak, the Egyptian regime allowed only a very limited public discussion of the issue of Palestine, censoring much criticism of Egyptian policy towards Israel and even Hamas. While Egypt under Mubarak maintained a ‘cold peace’ with Israel, under his leadership Egypt was host to a number of important Israeli-Palestinian negotiations. To maintain ties with the United States, Mubarak was hostile towards Iran and its allies Hezbollah, Syria, and Hamas, despite popular sentiment against such policies. According to ‘Wikileaks’ cabals released in 2010, Mubarak had even given Israel a green light to conduct its 2008 bombing raids on Hamas in the Gaza strip.[3]

Popular uprisings began on January 25th, 2011 in Egypt as the revolutionary tide of the Arab Spring swept across Egypt. Grievances of the protesters focused on legal and political issues, including police brutality, the abuse of state of emergency laws, corruption, economic issues, food price inflation, and the lack of free elections.[4] Millions of demonstrators demanded the overthrow of the regime of President Mubarak. While most protests were peaceful, occasional violent clashes between protestors and security forces occurred, and at least 846 people were killed. On February 11th, Mubarak resigned from office. Since then, Egypt has begun to transition into a functional democracy, although that transition has been rocky. On the 23rd of January, 2012, the Egyptian Parliament conducted an election. Of 498 elected seats, Islamists secured nearly 70%, with the Muslim Brotherhood controlling 235 total seats and the conservative Salafist Nour party controlling 125. Presidential elections are scheduled for the end of June, 2012, with potential frontrunners including politicians from the Mubarak regime, Muslim Brotherhood candidates, and political independents. The exact nature and details of the separation of powers in the democratic Egypt are still unclear. The military establishment will most likely retain powers dealing with national security, foreign affairs, and the defense budget. This might allow for a more stable Egyptian foreign policy reminiscent of the Mubarak era, but the military establishment will also likely fall under the influence of, and will need to be responsive to, the civilian-elected legislature and thus public opinion. [5]

An important consideration is how foreign policy is formulated differently in democracies than it is in autocracies. Autocratic regimes have massive leeway in forming their foreign policy: dictators can develop their own foreign policy strategies and frameworks without taking into consideration the opinions of the public. Autocracies subordinate their foreign policy to the goal of maintaining power, choosing strategies that will preserve the autocrat’s dominant position within the state. This can enable autocracies to engage in confrontational and hawkish attitudes, like in North Korea and Iran, to bolster their legitimacy and win the support of political elites, even though the general public support may support international cooperation and political moderation. Similarly, autocrats may develop foreign policy frameworks and international ties which are unpopular with the population, but which bolster the strength of the state and thus the autocrat’s position.[6] Pre-revolution Egypt is an example of this, where Egyptian ties with the United States and Israel were the focus of Egyptian foreign policy but unpopular with the general population. These ties, however, brought to Egypt massive amounts of military and economic aid, and helped Egypt become the preeminent Arab military and economic power. Foreign policy formation in a democracy operates differently than in an autocracy. How the public influences foreign policy is viewed differently across different international relations paradigms. Realists believe that leaders will either ignore the general public opinion and instead focus on what they view is the national interest, or will lead the masses to support their position. Liberals believe that the public opinion plays a role in constraining and shaping foreign policy, because a successful foreign policy in a democracy requires the support of the people.[7]

Despite their differences in explaining how foreign policy is formed in a democracy, both paradigms point to a scenario in Egypt which will be unfavorable to the United States. Assuming Realist assumptions are correct, the bodies in Egypt formulating foreign policy will still take positions contrary to the United States and Israel. For most Egyptians seated in the new parliament, it is believed that Egypt’s national interest is in gaining hegemony in the region, which would require it to stand against American clout and balance against Israel. Even if the Egyptian military remains in control of Egyptian foreign policy, as it traditionally was, Egypt’s relationship with other players in the Arab world will change. According to some analysts, the military views friendship with Iran, Hezbollah, Hamas, and Syria, all traditional Israeli and American adversaries, as being in its own interests: By maintaining connections with all major factions in the Middle East, the military will increase its own influence in regional politics.[8] Such a repositioning in Egyptian strategic ties, as well as a distancing between Egypt and the United States, will lessen American hegemony in the region and hurt American political goals, such as containing Iran’s influence, weakening its proxies, and maintaining regional stability. Further, such a repositioning will create a security dilemma in Israel, who views these countries as being its direct adversaries. Under the rule of Mubarak, Egypt was able to serve as a balance to these powers, and thus lessen the perception of danger within Israel. An Egypt that is forming ties with these powers, however, will cause Israel to feel surrounded, isolated, and have the need to strengthen itself in order to balance the new ratio of power. The prospects for American influence in the post-revolution Egypt are equally dim should liberalism more accurately describe the formation of foreign policy. Both the leadership and the general population within Egypt view Israel and the United States with mistrust and believe that Egypt should balance against Israel and assert more hegemony. A foreign policy developed along those lines would be just as damaging to American influence in the region as one developed according to the Realist paradigm.

Indeed, without the repression and censorship that came with Mubarak’s rule and with greater public influence in the realm of foreign policy, Egyptian public opinion and support for the Palestinian cause, as well as Egyptian perception of the United States, has the capability to seriously strain Israeli-Egyptian and Egyptian-American relations. Egypt’s alliance with Washington unnerved the Egyptian public, who felt that Egypt’s standing in the Arab world was slipping because of the American-backed Mubarak. In order to rebuild this influence in the Arab region, candidates, activists, and experts from across the political spectrum agreed that Egypt should seek friendlier relationships with Iran and its allies. At the same time, they feel that Egypt should lessen its strategic ties with the United States, and assert itself more strongly when dealing with the West. The feeling pervasive amongst Egyptians is that they want their country to be the center of the Arab world, which would require a consolidation of power and clout.[9] Meanwhile, in the case of further Israeli-Palestinian conflict, Israeli actions against Palestinians in urban areas are sure to cause Arab civilian casualties. These images broadcast over satellite television and the Internet will have a deeply destabilizing effect on Egyptian public opinion. The stalemate on the issue of Israeli settlements and the status of a Palestinian state will also serve to ignite the sentiments of the Egyptian population.[10] As a result of these sentiments, according to some analysts, anti-Israeli sentiment is growing within Egypt. This, in turn, influences how Egyptians view their foreign policy when dealing with Israel. In a Pew Research Center poll published two months after the revolution, 54 percent of Egyptians favored annulling the peace agreement with Israel. Some radical parties within Egypt favor plans to close the Suez Canal to the Israeli navy and block the sale of natural gas to Israel.[11]

The growing clout of Islamists in the Egyptian political system will also influence Egypt’s relationship with Israel. Islamist groups may not accept an Israeli or American foreign policy that is adversarial to the Islamic Hamas. According to experts, the Muslim Brotherhood and the Salafist parties will not likely be committed to a peace treaty with Israel, or will at the least be confrontational with Israel. According to a review on Israeli-Egyptian relations, “One spokesperson for the Salafist Nour party said, “We will abide by the treaty, but this does not mean accepting a number of clauses which the Egyptian people are clearly and unanimously against, such as exporting gas to Israel”[12]. The Islamification of Egypt’s democracy will cause a major strategic shift in Egypt’s orientation, and as Islamic parties currently hold a majority of seats in Egypt’s parliament, it is likely that Egyptian foreign policy will be pushed further away from American interests.[13]

It is clear that the future of American foreign policy for the Arab region will need to adapt to the new realities presented by Egyptian democracy. No longer can the United States expect the support of the most powerful Arab state in return for bankrolling its military and economic development. Similarly, the United States can no longer rely on autocratic regimes to support and maintain stability in the region. New assumptions should be made in response to the change in the political structure of Egypt, as well as across the Arab world. The foremost assumption is that American political influence in the Middle East and its capacity for directly influencing Arab politics is now weakened. The loss of a strategic partner in Egypt means that the United States cannot call for its support in influencing regional politics and maintaining stability with Israel. Furthermore, without the combined strength of American and Egyptian hegemony facing them, other Arab states can be expected to be less receptive to American influence and positions on Arab regional politics. With this in mind, the United States will need to be more cautious when trying to assert its position in the Arab world and more receptive to compromise. On a similar note, the United States will have no choice but to lessen its firm support for Israel while opening up greater room and possibility for compromise on the issue of Palestine. The Israeli-Palestinian conflict is currently the greatest ‘powder-keg’ in the Arab region, and the stance of a democratic Egypt will put it at odds with Israel should the Israeli government, backed by the United States, continue the policies it has been undertaking for the past few years. The United States can no longer be assured of stability and cooperation on the issue from the Egyptians while also fully backing the Israeli government. In fact, a democratic Egypt coming at odds with Israel could provide surrounding Arab states enough confidence to do the same, thus providing even greater incentive for the United States to temper its uncompromising support for Israeli policies. A conflict in the region would be disastrous for the already weakening American position in the Middle East, as well as very costly for all parties involved in the fighting.

The United States can, however, still utilize tools at its disposal to influence Egyptian and regional politics, even in the post-revolution era. The United States still provides economic and military aid and assistance to Egypt, and this money has recently greatly helped an Egypt whose economy suffered greatly during the revolution.[14] The United States could ‘dangle’ the possibility of further aid towards Egypt should certain conditions which reflect American interests and values be met, or raise the possibility for aid cuts should Egypt develop a foreign policy at odds with the interests of the United States. Additionally, the United States could promote free-trade agreements and other bilateral forms of cooperation with Egypt, should the regime fall into line with the interests of the United States. While Egypt does seek greater hegemony and autonomy in the region, cooperation with the United States would do nothing but bolster its own strength and capabilities. Additionally, forgoing American support and aid would do much to harm a weakened Egyptian economy and shaky transition, a fact which American policy makers could make apparent to Egyptian legislators.

Despite a weakened direct influence in the region, the United States can still employ the policy of ‘offshore balancing’ in the Middle East in order to bring Egypt and other powers back into its camp. Offshore balancing is when a power plays with regional politics, favoring certain regional powers, to counter the growth of a certain power in the region. In the case of the Middle East, the United States could use the rise of Iran as a regional power to bring Egypt back in line with its own interests. While the Egyptian government does seek greater ties with Iran, they will also come into direct competition in some point in the future for hegemony over Arab politics. Egypt would gain much by aligning itself with the United States, who is already in opposition towards Iran. The United States should make this point apparent to Egyptian policymakers, and demonstrate that it has the capacity to help Arab states against Iran, should they align themselves with American interests. The development of an Iranian nuclear weapon will also trigger a ‘bandwagon’ affect across the Middle East, where Arab powers unable to develop their own nuclear weapons, such as Egypt[15], will seek the protection of another nuclear armed power to deter against Iran. The United States could easily serve as this protector for Egypt, and this would do much to help bring Egypt to cooperate with American interests and regional goals. Finally, the United States can use messages of democratic solidarity and shared ideals with the Egyptian population to reform its image in the Egyptian mind. Messages such as support for personal freedoms, freedom of speech, freedom of assembly, and political participation could help bolster the idealistic ties between the United States and the liberated Egyptian population. Additionally, Liberal theory argues that a ‘democratic peace’ exists, in which no democracies go to war. If this is a case, then the United States, Israel, and Egypt, all being democracies, will have a lessened chance of open, armed confrontation.

The revolution and subsequent transition towards democracy in Egypt will change American influence within Egypt and thus American foreign policy strategy across the Middle East. A democratic Egypt will be less likely to cooperate with Israel and the United States in a manner similar to the Mubarak era, and will most likely be more openly antagonistic towards Israel and American interests. The United States, however, still has a number of tools at its disposal to influence regional politics and bring a democratic Egypt back into a system of cooperation.

Works Cited

[1] Egypt, Foreign Relations, March 12th 2012, http://www.state.gov/r/pa/ei/bgn/5309.htm#relations

[2] Egypt, Foreign Relations

[3] Egyptian Foreign Policy After the Election, Geneive Abdo, November 29th 2011, http://www.foreignaffairs.com/features/letters-from/egyptian-foreign-policy-after-the-election

[4] Egypt Protests a Ticking Time Bomb: Analysts, January 27th, 2011, http://www.thenewage.co.za/8894-1007-53-Egypt_protests_a_ticking_time_bomb_Analysts

[5] Egypt in Transition, Jeremy M. Sharp, February 8th 2012, http://www.fas.org/sgp/crs/mideast/RL33003.pdf

[6] Regime Strategy and Foreign Policy in Autocracies, Debra Shulman, Yale University, 2008

[7] To What Extent is Foreign Policy Making Affected by Public Opinion in a Liberal Democracy, Rudi Guraziu, January 2008, http://www.atlanticcommunity.org/app/webroot/files/articlepdf/To%20what%20extent%20is%20foreign%20policy%20making%20affected%20by%20public%20opinion.pdf

[8] Egyptian Foreign Policy After the Election

[9] The Impact of the Arab Spring on the Future of Egypt-Israel Relation, Koshan Ali Khidhir, December 28th, 2011, http://www.globalpolitician.com/27244-israel-egypt-arab-spring-islam

[10] Egyptian Foreign Policy After the Election

[11] The Impact of the Arab Spring on the Future of Egypt-Israel Relation

[12] Egypt in Transition

[13] The Impact of the Arab Spring on the Future of Egypt-Israel Relation

[14] Egypt in Transition

[15] Don’t Fear a Nuclear Arms Race in the Middle East, Stephen Cook, April 2nd 2012, http://www.foreignpolicy.com/articles/2012/04/02/don_t_fear_a_nuclear_arms_race

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