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Why Do States Go To War?

991 words - 4 pages

Question: Why do states go to war?

School 1: States that want to achieve more power, use war as the means to gain more power or maintain power in Anarchical world.

Evera, S. V. (1998). Offense, Defense, and the Causes of War. International Security, 4(22), 5-43. Retrieved from

According Evera, a state is more likely to engage in war if they will have the upper hand between the states if they engage in warfare. ( Evera 5) There are several reasons why a state would consider going to war according to Evera, they look at the decision making of the state. The state will go to war if they are able to gain the upper ...view middle of the document...

(Glasser 172-174). As a result this leads to states not knowing the different types of weapons when it comes to a state building up for war or safety. The differences the way offense and defensive realist see power, offense realist want to use the build up in power to attack different areas. Defensive realist use the weapons to protect themselves, but their is a hard to see the differences in the kind of weapons used. It also looks at how a state tries to protect its security and power in an anarchical system. (Glasser 197). Realism says that power and security are the most important things to a state. The main view of the article was through a defensive realist point of view, because it emphasized security and trying to protect itself from other states. The thing against Glasser argument by critics are saying that the balanced information provided Glasser was considered bad well trying to predict the state what how the state would behave. Critics use perception over balance when it comes to deciding on how a state would act. (Glasser 199).

School 2: States evaluate going to war by the potential loss and gains it can receive

Jervis The MIT Press, R. (1988). War and Misperception. Retrieved from

Jervis makes the argument that states go to war without having the full information if going to war would be the best situation for the state. He uses misperception as the big reason why states go to war with one another.( Jervis 675). Using different factors that makes lead to states to going to war, states tend to overlook the capabilities of the other state. This causes them to attack,...

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