Policy Series: Will Trumpism increase the Danger of War in the International System?: IR Theory and the Illiberal Turn in World Politics

This short piece focuses on mapping and evaluating some of the expectations of International Relations (IR) theory with regard to the potential effects of Trumpism and the illiberal turn in world politics on war and peace.[1] Obviously, there is a high degree of uncertainty here, but that does not mean that such an intellectual exercise cannot be helpful in highlighting some of the potential consequences of the major changes taking place on the important subject of war and peace.[2] The mere fact of rising uncertainty in international politics is, by itself, going to have some significant effects, which we should try to explore.

H-Diplo | ISSF POLICY Series
America and the World—2017 and Beyond

“Will Trumpism increase the Danger of War in the International System?: IR Theory and the Illiberal Turn in World Politics”

Essay by Benjamin Miller, University of Haifa

Published on 27 April 2017 | issforum.org

Editors: Robert Jervis, Francis Gavin, Joshua Rovner, and Diane Labrosse
Web and Production Editor: George Fujii

Shortlink:  tiny.cc/PR-1-5AG
Permalink:  http://issforum.org/roundtables/policy/1-5AG-war
PDF URL:  http://issforum.org/ISSF/PDF/Policy-Roundtable-1-5AG.pdf

This short piece focuses on mapping and evaluating some of the expectations of International Relations (IR) theory with regard to the potential effects of Trumpism and the illiberal turn in world politics on war and peace.[1] Obviously, there is a high degree of uncertainty here, but that does not mean that such an intellectual exercise cannot be helpful in highlighting some of the potential consequences of the major changes taking place on the important subject of war and peace.[2] The mere fact of rising uncertainty in international politics is, by itself, going to have some significant effects, which we should try to explore.

The election of Donald Trump and other nationalist challenges to the post-Cold War liberal order raise concerns about the increasing danger of armed conflicts. Many observers believe that various components of the U.S.-led liberal international order have promoted international peace and cooperation despite the emergence of some dangerous conflicts in recent years.[3] Especially notable is the peaceful transformation of Central/Eastern Europe following the end of the Cold War. This transformation was arguably made possible by the strengthening of the liberal international order in the aftermath of the Soviet disintegration. Thus, challenging the liberal order may undermine peace and any further prospects for peaceful change. Yet, some realists might view a few of the challenges to international liberalism as being not so negative. These challenges, in this realist view, might even have some stabilizing effects –even if they do not by themselves cause stable peace in conflict-prone regions.

The logic of the U.S.-led international liberal order is based on the ability and willingness of the hegemonic power to provide the collective goods of peace and prosperity.[4] The key component of this liberal order are the worldwide U.S. alliances and military deployments, creating a credible security umbrella for the liberal order based primarily on the U.S. commitment to NATO and the American bilateral alliances with Japan and South Korea. Another crucial element is multilateral free-trade agreements and the growing globalization and economic interdependence of numerous states. The rising European integration through the European Union (EU) has been a particularly ambitious liberal accomplishment, which made possible peaceful change, notably between France and Germany after World War II and later helping to stabilize the whole continent. The American security umbrella was a key condition for this integration to take place. [5]

American leadership has also encouraged the rising global involvement of international institutions, including UN peace-keeping in various hot-spots around the world, which seem to strengthen peace and to prevent violent hostilities.[6] Finally, despite some major setbacks, liberals strongly believe in the pacifying effects of the basic U.S. and Western commitment to support democracy-promotion and the protection of human rights, culminating in the United Nations (UN) resolution of “Responsibility to Protect.” Many components of the liberal order have seemed to signify a decline in the appeal of nationalism and its power of attraction in relation to more inclusive, universal, cosmopolitan, or regional identities, values, and attachments.

These pillars of the liberal order appear to be challenged by the Trump administration and thus, in the liberal view, emerging American policies are likely to challenge some of the key mechanisms which helped to promote international peace and cooperation. The major mechanism of the U.S.-led alliances, particularly in Europe and East Asia, appears to be challenged by the ‘America First’ narrow transactional and nationalist view of Trump. This view suggests that the weakening of the solid commitment to the allies, especially since Trump views these countries as free riders who prosper under the American security umbrella, while not paying their fair share for their own protection. Moreover, Trump argued that NATO is “obsolete,” including in the context of the global war on terror.[7] He also challenged U.S. alliances in East Asia, while raising the idea that the Japanese and South Koreans should acquire nuclear weapons.[8] Even if more recent statements by administration officials suggest a continuous American commitment to the allies, it seems that the positions expressed by Trump have already undermined, at least to some extent, the credibility of American security commitments.[9]

One potential effect of the decline in credibility of these commitments might be to weaken the Western deterrence of the revisionist powers, while encouraging more assertive, if not aggressive, behavior such as that of Russia in the post-Soviet sphere and in Syria, China in the East- and South China Sea, Iran in the Arab world, and more dangerous missile and nuclear tests by North Korea. Even if the administration will reiterate its commitments to the allies, one may expect a higher degree of uncertainty in international security.[10] Such uncertainty might, in turn, lead to miscalculations resulting in an inadvertent escalation in one or more of these arenas. Moreover, at least some of the allies might try to balance against the rising threats in their neighborhoods by arming themselves and enhancing their alliances. Such armament might include nuclear weapons and thus increase the danger of nuclear proliferation. Indeed some in Europe, notably in Germany, have already suggested the establishment of a joint nuclear force by the EU, or at least by Germany and some of its neighbors, because of the rising fear of the American retreat.[11]

Another option for at least some of the allies—especially for the more vulnerable of them and those who are more proximate to the key source of threat — is to bandwagon with the threatening power or at least trying to accommodate its key demands. Thus the option of ‘Finlandization,’ especially for weak countries in Eastern Europe and in East Asia, might become relevant. In other words, these countries are likely to subordinate their foreign policies to the preferences of their powerful revisionist neighbor.

The supposed ability of the liberal international order to preserve international peace has also been based on the U.S. (and European) commitment to democracy-promotion. Not only is democracy viewed as a better regime internally, but liberals also strongly believe in the peaceful orientation of democracies. At the very least, liberals highlight the “democratic peace,” namely that democracies do not, or only rarely, fight each other.[12] In this sense, the more democracies there are, the greater the ability to advance regional and international peace. Yet, the Trump administration appears to be opposed to democracy-promotion and also to humanitarian interventions, which potentially could also reinforce a more benign behavior by various states, and thus also strengthen regional peace.[13]

Another liberal pillar with pacifying effects, which seems to be threatened by the illiberal turn, involves international and regional institutions.[14] The rise of nationalism in both the U.S. and Europe might weaken these institutions and thus undermine their ability to promote international peace and security. The supposedly most effective pacifying institution—the EU—is currently challenged by BREXIT and the rise of nationalist anti-immigrant parties on the continent. The Trump administration, for its part, indicated that it would cut its financial support for the UN, which is likely to harm its peacekeeping operations.[15]

Key tools of the liberal order include diplomacy, U.S. foreign aid and the American “soft power”—the power of attraction of the U.S. as a good ‘international citizen.’ This American soft power is also based on the United States’ democratic and economically prosperous domestic system.[16] In the liberal view, these tools of diplomacy and soft power advance international peace by facilitating the ability of the U.S. to play the role of an ‘honest broker’ in various international conflicts. Such tools provide alternatives to war by influencing states to focus on negotiations and economic development rather than on resorting to violence. Moreover, diplomacy and development can address the underlying sources of violence more effectively than military tools. The latter, for their part, might rather exacerbate conflicts and lead to security dilemmas with other powers and as a result to unnecessary and de-stabilizing arms races and militarized crises. Yet, Trump’s budget, while increasing defense spending, suggests major cuts in the State Department and United States Aid for International Development (USAID) budgets, even though Congress might not endorse all of these cuts.[17]

Liberals are worried about two statecraft methods, which the Trump administration seems to prefer: unilateralism and great-power spheres of influence. Liberals believe, in contrast, in the utility of multilateralism to manage and advance international cooperation in various issue-areas. At the same time, in the liberal view, a division into spheres of influence is likely to create tensions both among the great powers and between them and the smaller states in their respective spheres.

Trade in the liberal approach is a major pacifying mechanism, “better trade than invade,”[18] as the saying goes. Thus, in this view the growing trade under a globalized world can facilitate the endurance of a stable peace. Once states enjoy the huge benefits from trade, according to the liberal perspective, they will not have much motivation to go to war against each other and to pay the heavy costs involved in disrupting the beneficial trade among them. Economic interdependence among states might also make it more difficult for them to move unilaterally against each other as production lines and other industrial functions are spread in a number of countries. Indeed, this was the idea behind the European Coal and Steel Community between the former enemies France and Germany. And it seems to have worked and to have facilitated the emergence of peace among them since the 1950s.

Recent elections and voting in the U.S. and the UK—two of the main pillars of free trade—revealed, however, a rising populist resentment toward globalization and trade-agreements among large publics in the two countries. Such opposition, endorsed by the Trump administration,[19] might weaken the ability of global powers to reach multilateral free-trade accords and as a result to reduce the capacity of the trade mechanism to make the world –and unstable regions—more peaceful.

The rising nationalism and especially anti-immigrant sentiments might also make peace-promotion more difficult and conflict more likely, especially when it is based on a “clash of civilizations” view against Islam.[20] More specifically, the diplomatic strategy initiated with Iran under the Obama administration in the context of Iran’s nuclear agreement with the great powers might be interrupted by the rising tensions in the Middle East between Tehran and Washington, and Jerusalem and the Gulf states. The Trump administration expresses a much more hostile position toward Iran, while enhancing the strategic relations with Saudi Arabia and the Gulf states, and also with Israel.[21] All of these Middle Eastern states are keen opponents of Iran and are deeply worried about its hegemonic intentions in the region and its growing penetration into the Arab world. They might produce a dangerous escalation in the region, which could involve also the U.S.

The potential accommodation of a revisionist Russia by Trump or by Europe, when the latter perceives it has lost its American protector, would not necessarily have pacifying effects. Liberals might suspect that an appeasement of such an authoritarian power is likely to embolden more aggression by it, and for that matter, by such other potentially revisionist countries such as China or Iran.

The Realist Counter-View

Some realists might, however, not see these recent developments as necessarily leading to more conflict, although they may not see them as leading to stable peace either.[22] In the eyes of these realists, the seemingly unconditional U.S. security umbrella for America’s allies has allowed them to ‘free-ride’ on the U.S. commitment and to avoid allocating the necessary resources for their own national defense.[23] Moreover, some of the allies have been provocative toward their opponents, while relying on the U.S. security umbrella. This could cause unnecessary conflict. Especially provocative toward Russia, for example, was the enlargement of NATO to the east and the EU economic agreement with Ukraine in 2014. Such anti-Russian expansionist Western moves, in the realist view, compelled Moscow to behave more assertively and to annex Crimea and to intervene in Eastern Ukraine.[24] Somewhat similarly, it seems less costly for American allies in East Asia to engage in maritime conflicts with China so long they are under the U.S. protective shield. Realists believe that moving away from such ever-growing commitments will stabilize the international system, or at the very least reduce the likelihood of a great-power conflict.

The realists are especially concerned about the American policies to shape the domestic character of other states, particularly by advancing democracy-promotion, “nation-building,” and the universal protection of human rights.[25] In this context they highlight what they see as disastrous American military interventions, notably, in Iraq in 2003 and in Libya in 2011 and also the continuously costly intervention in Afghanistan since 2001. In their eyes such military interventions are not necessary for the protection of American national interests. Moreover, such military engagements are unlikely to succeed and in many cases are de-stabilizing and are causing unnecessary conflicts. Such interventions simply increase the perceived threat posed by the U.S. to some other countries. Thus, lessening—if not completely abandoning—the U.S. commitment to advance these liberal values is likely, in realist eyes, to stabilize the international system and to serve well the American national security interests.

Even though liberals see trade as a major pacifying mechanism, realists view trade—and economic interdependence more broadly—as potential sources for conflict.[26] They highlight the earlier U.S. trade conflicts with Japan and currently with Mexico and China. Thus, moving away from free trade might diffuse conflicts rather than accelerate them. Moreover, there is a growing populist opposition in the West to globalization. In this sense, it cannot work as a useful recipe for the promotion of peace. Similarly, despite the high levels of economic interdependence between Japan and China, for example, such interdependence does not prevent conflict between them and definitely does not result in stable peace even if it might have helped to prevent a shooting war between them, at least thus far.

Realists are also skeptical about the ability of international institutions to advance stable peace.[27] Such institutions are not independent actors, which can influence the behavior of the member-states in important ways. International institutions just reflect the balance of power among states. States follow their national interests, and even more so in this age of rising nationalism. Thus we cannot expect much from the ability of international institutions to pacify intense conflicts, especially among the great powers. Even the most remarkable of international intuitions—the EU—has recently failed in advancing cooperation among its members with regard to the key issues of immigration, terrorism and the Euro financial crisis.

Realists might be a bit skeptical about a potential reconciliation between the U.S. and Russia based on factors such as the personal friendship between Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin or the supposedly common traditional/illiberal values of key figures in their respective administrations. Yet, the presence of a common enemy might be a good source of friendship. In this sense the Islamic State and perhaps even China create a potential basis for cooperation and avoidance of conflict between Moscow and Washington. But on the whole this will not advance a high-level ‘warm’ peace in Europe or elsewhere; rather it may, at most, lead to some kind of an unstable spheres-of-influence arrangement, which is unlikely to endure for an extended period.

In sum, while liberals offer a menu of mechanisms for promoting peace, these mechanisms seem now under assault or in some process of weakening under Trumpism and the illiberal turn in quite a few other countries. Realists, for their part, do not believe in the far-reaching peace-producing effects of such liberal mechanisms. They tend to see some level of great-power competition as the natural order under international anarchy. Realists at most expect that there will be some stabilizing effects of deterrence, especially nuclear deterrence, and of the balance of power among the great powers. These kind of factors might — also under Trumpism—maintain world stability and prevent war even if some level of great-power conflict is expected to endure at any rate. The most effective instrument for cooperation—applicable even under the illiberal turn– is based on common threats faced by the great powers such as large-scale terrorism or risky behavior by a small nuclear power such as North Korea and potentially Iran.

Evaluation of the Realist and the Liberal Views

At this stage, less than three months into the Trump administration, it is quite difficult to determine which approach is right. Still, on the whole, we might be able to distinguish between short-term versus long-term effects and among different types of peace. In the short-term, realists may have a point: the avoidance of American interventions for democracy-promotion and humanitarian interventions might stabilize the international system. The key American adversaries—Russia, China, and Iran— will be less troubled by regime–change strategies or ‘color revolutions’ advanced by the U.S. that are perceived to be posing major threats to their regimes. The eastward expansion of NATO and the EU, which realists argue has provoked Russia, will also stop. Such reassurances are likely to increase stability in international politics and to produce at least a ‘cold peace’ in the international system and in key regions.

In the longer-run, however, the liberals might have a point that the more democracies –and multilateral trade agreements and stronger international and regional institutions—there are in the international system, the greater the likelihood of high-level or ‘warm peace’ in which the probability of resorting to violence to resolve conflicts declines considerably.[28] Under these liberal conditions, there will be a rising likelihood of international cooperation to tackle major global challenges such as nuclear proliferation, climate change, terrorism, and the management of the world economy. In an illiberal and nationalist world, it might be impossible to achieve such accomplishments.

Another short-term benefit from the realist perspective might be a greater willingness of the allies—at least the affluent of them– to protect themselves and perhaps also their more vulnerable neighbors. This would reduce the American defense-burden and make deterrence more credible as it is done by those who could be the direct victims of aggression by the revisionist powers. Indeed, one important change which may already be taking place is the seemingly growing European willingness to take care of their own security by increasing defense spending and even ‘going nuclear.’[29] This seems to confirm the realist argument that a reduction in the automatic U.S. commitment to the defense of affluent allies—and to tolerate free-riders— will increase their efforts to defend themselves and to balance the revisionist powers. The same logic might also apply to the rich East Asian allies, notably Japan and S. Korea, although the absence of a multilateral defense alliance there might weaken a bit the self-defense case in that region.

The drawbacks to this development, highlighted by the liberals, include the dangers of nuclear proliferation and arms races in Europe and Asia. While such armament by the allies could deter the revisionist powers of Russia and China even in the absence of a highly credible U.S. commitment, some liberals and also quite a few realists might doubt whether a rising power such as China would be deterred from pursuing expansionist moves in its maritime disputes in the absence of a credible American security umbrella to its neighbors. The worst-case scenario—both for the realists and liberals—might be that following a major Chinese –or Russian — act of aggression, the U.S. might be compelled to intervene. This could lead to a more serious clash than otherwise would have been the case, namely if the U.S. had kept a clear-cut security commitment to its major allies in Europe and Asia.

Another potentially problematic scenario detected by at least some liberals refers to the appeasement of the revisionist/authoritarian powers by the deserted allies or the latter pursuing bandwagoning with these powers following the disappearance of the U.S. commitment.[30] This differs from the realist expectation of balancing—especially by affluent and potentially powerful countries. The emerging behavior by the Europeans thus far seems to fit more with the balancing scenario, although some right-wing nationalists seem to prefer bandwagoning with Putin’s Russia.

In sum, realists might be right in the short-run. If, and this is a big ‘if,’ Trump’s policies follow at least some elements of the basic realist logic, they might not jeopardize a cold peace among the great powers and might have some short-run benefits for the U.S. by avoiding unnecessary interventions. However, the liberals may be right that illiberal polices will prevent the option in the longer-run of a more stable and cooperative warm peace to emerge—even if realists are doubtful that such a world is possible under international anarchy. Moreover, the weakening of the liberal order may encourage aggression by the revisionist powers, or the bandwagoning of smaller powers with them, or both. Such options should worry both liberals and realists.


Benjamin Miller is Professor of International Relations at the School of Political Sciences, The University of Haifa. Miller’s work in international relations focuses on explaining patterns of international conflict and cooperation and the sources of war and peace. His current project focuses on explaining changes in U.S. grand strategy since World War II. Another major project explains variations in war and peace in the post-Cold War era. Among his publications: When Opponents Cooperate: Great Power Conflict and Collaboration in World Politics (Ann Arbor, Michigan: The University of Michigan Press, 2nd ed., 2002); States, Nations and Great Powers: The Sources of Regional War and Peace (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press—Cambridge Studies in International Relations, 2007); Regional Peacemaking and Conflict Resolution: A Comparative Approach (London: Routledge, 2015; co-edited with Carmela Lutmar, and based on Miller’s theory); and Between International and Regional Security: The Sources of War and Peace (Routledge, 2017—the book is a collection of Miller’s best essays and includes also some new work).

© Copyright 2017 The Authors



[1] This essay was submitted on 22 March 2017.

On Trump and IR theory, see Robert Jervis, “President Trump and IR Theory,” ISSF Policy Series “America and the World—2017 and Beyond,” Introductory Essay, https://issforum.org/ISSF/PDF/Policy-Roundtable-1-5B.pdf.

[2] For a sensible warning about the limits to the predictive capacities of IR theory in general and in the context of the Trump’s presidency in particular, see Michael N. Barnett, “Trump and International Relations Theory: A Response to Robert Jervis’s ‘President Trump and IR Theory,’ 7 February 2017; https://issforum.org/roundtables/policy/1-5l-trump-ir.

[3] On the U.S.-led international liberal order, see G. John Ikenberry, Liberal Leviathan (Princeton, Princeton University Press, 2011).

[4] Mancur Olson, The Logic of Collective Action (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1965).

[5] Josef Joffe, ‘Europe’s American Pacifier’, Foreign Policy 50 (1984): 64-82.

[6] Lise Morjé Howard, “Trump wants to cut U.N. funding—but peacekeeping saves money, as well as lives,” Monkey Cage (blog), Washington Post, 2 April 2017, https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/monkey-cage/wp/2017/03/31/trump-wants-to-cut-u-n-funding-but-peacekeeping-saves-money-as-well-as-lives/?utm_term=.a37925119acf&wpisrc=nl_cage&wpmm=1

[7] On Trump’s criticism of NATO, see Michael R. Gordon and Niraj Chokshi, “Trump criticizes NATO and Hopes for ‘Good Deals’ with Russia”, New York Times, 16 January 2017, A3. See also The Economist, 4 March 2017, 19.

[8] See Stephanie Condon, CBS News, 29 March 2016, http://www.cbsnews.com/news/donald-trump-japan-south-korea-might-need-nuclear-weapons/?utm_source=Sailthru&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=New%20Campaign&utm_term=%2ASituation%20Report.

[9] On European worries about Trump as a potentials threat to the EU and concerns that the U.S. will not maintain its security commitment to Europe, see James Kanter, “Trump Threatens Europe’s Stability, a top Leader Warns,” New York Times, 1 February 2017, A13. https://www.nytimes.com/2017/01/31/world/europe/trump-european-union-donald-tusk.html?action=click&contentCollection=Europe&module=RelatedCoverage&region=Marginalia&pgtype=article.

[10] On growing international uncertainty after Trump’s election, see Steven Erlanger, “As Trump era Arrives, a Sense of Uncertainty Grips the World,” New York Times, 17 January 2017, A1. https://www.nytimes.com/2017/01/16/world/europe/trump-eu-nato-merkel-brexit-russia-germany-china.html?action=click&contentCollection=Europe&module=RelatedCoverage&region=Marginalia&pgtype=article.

[11] Max Fisher, “Fearing U.S. retreat, Europe considers own nuclear deterrent,” New York Times, 7 March 2017, 3; The Economist, 4 March 2017, 19.

[12] See Bruce M. Russett, Grasping the Democratic Peace: Principles for a Post-Cold War World (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1993).

[13] On Trump’s opposition to democracy-promotion and the reasons for that, related to his opposition to “American exceptionalism,” see Stephen Wertheim, “Donald Trump Versus American Exceptionalism: Toward the Sources of Trumpian Conduct,” 1 February 2017, https://issforum.org/roundtables/policy/1-5k-trump-exceptionalism; On Trump’s reservations about protecting human rights, see Allissa J. Rubin, “In Trump’s America, a Toned-Down Voice for Human Rights,” New York Times, 10 March 2017, https://www.nytimes.com/2017/03/10/world/europe/in-trumps-america-a-toned-down-voice-for-human-rights.html?ribbon-ad-idx=5&rref=world/europe&module=Ribbon&version=context&region=Header&action=click&contentCollection=Europe&pgtype=article.

[14] On the pacifying effects of the three key liberal mechanisms (democracy, institutions and interdependence), see Bruce Russett and John R. Oneal, Triangulating Peace: Democracy, Interdependence, and International Organizations (New York: W.W. Norton, 2001).

[15] Colum Lynch, “Trump Administration Eyes $1 Billion in Cuts to U.N. Peacekeeping,” Foreign Policy, 23 March 2017, https://foreignpolicy.com/2017/03/23/trump-administration-eyes-1-billion-in-cuts-to-u-n-peacekeeping/.

[16] On American soft power, see Joseph Nye, The Paradox of American Power (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2002).

[17] See Colum Lynch and Dan De Luce, “Trump’s Budget Blueprint: Pulling Up he Diplomatic Drawbridge,” Foreign Policy, 16 March 2017, https://foreignpolicy.com/2017/03/16/trumps-budget-blueprint-pulling-up-the-diplomatic-drawbridge/.

[18] Richard N. Rosecrance, The Rise of the Trading State: Commerce and Conquest in the Modern World (New York: Basic Books, 1986).

[19] Damian Paletta, “New rifts emerge as Trump administration rejects free trade statement at G-20 meeting, Washington Post, 18 March 2017.

[20] Samuel Huntington, The Clash of Civilizations and the Remaking of World Order (New York: Simon& Schuster 1996).

[21] Madawi al-Rasheed, “Trump and Saudi Arabia.” Foreign Affairs Snapshot, 18 March 2017.

[23] For a key realist skeptic of the post-Cold War U.S. security behavior and commitments, see Barry R. Posen, Restraint: A New Foundation for U.S. Grand Strategy (Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 2014). See also Stephen M. Walt, “The Donald versus ‘The Blob’” in the series ‘Trump and IR,’ H-Diplo/ISSF, 14 February 2017, https://issforum.org/category/roundtables/policy; John J. Mearsheimer and Stephen W. Walt, “The Case for Off-Shore Balancing,” Foreign Affairs, July/August 2016. See also various columns of Stephen W. Walt in Foreign Policy, on-line, for example: “Could there be a Peace of Trumphalia?,” 14 November 2016.

[24] John J. Mearsheimer, “Why the Ukraine Crisis is the West’s Fault: The Liberal Delusions That Provoked Putin.” Foreign Affairs (September/October 2014), https://www.foreignaffairs.com/articles/russia-fsu/2014-08-18/why-ukraine-crisis-west-s-fault.

[25] For a comprehensive treatment of U.S. efforts to shape the domestic character of other states in the post-Cold War era, see Michael Mandelbaum, Mission Failure (New York: Oxford University Press, 2016).

[26] On the realist-liberal divide regarding the effects of economic interdependence on war and how to address this debate, see Dale Copeland, Economic Interdependnece and War (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2015).

[27] John J. Mearsheimer, “The False Promise of International Institutions,” International Security 19:3 (1995): 5-49.

[28] On the differences between cold peace and warm peace, see Benjamin Miller, States, Nations and Great Powers: The Sources of Regional War and Peace (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press—Cambridge Studies in International Relations, 2007).

[29] Doug Bandow, “The Case for a European Nuke,” Foreign Affairs on-line, 28 March 2017.

[30] On these concerns “shared by many in the foreign policy community”—and the realist critique of it—see Barry R. Posen, Restraint: A New Foundation for U.S. Grand Strategy (Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 2014), 172. See also Jakub J. Grygiel and Wess Mitchell, The Unquiet Frontier (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2016).