Unmasking international relations in the times of war in Africa: beyond rhetoric, reality and trust.

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Daka, Harrison
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International journal of research and scientific innovation
This paper unmasks the concept of international relations using the lenses of realist school of thought. Relations of nation states towards each other, and with international organisations, including sub national entities is what international relations (IR) is all about (Antunes and Camisao, 2018; Adams, 2003; Wendt, 1992; Axelrod and Keohane 1993). The significance of IR in the contemporary world, as it were in the past cannot be overemphasized. It seeks to comprehend the roots of war and the preservation of peace both stemming from the nature and exercise of power within the global system. To this effect, the discipline of international relations comprises of numerous theories, each attempting to explain the power relations and the resultant behaviour of nation states on the international scene. Of particular interest to this article is how the realism theory of IR enhances the prospects of cooperation within the international environmentand the realists’ main obstacles to achieving cooperation in international development. As one of the many theories in the IR discourse, Realism claims to explain the reality of international politics. Realists believe that sovereign states are the principal actors on the international political system, having at their disposal justifiable actions or tools for the protection of their interests. Proponents of realism argue that states are unitary and rational actors of importance seeking to secure their survival through reliance on their own means even if it meant war (Glaser, 1994; Brown, 2007; Milner, 1992).Drawing from secondary sources of data and using a desk top review approach, this study found that realists come close to explaining the actual happenings on the IR scene i.e. the survival of the state at all costs, also called the ethics of responsibility rather than by moral principles as other theorists argue. Realism as a school of thought in the IR discourse has generated a significant volume of debate and criticisms igniting valuable insights and remains an important analytical tool for stakeholders in IR. Key Words: International Relations theories, power, security, sovereignty, corruption
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