Bruce A. McMenomy, Ph.D. and Christe A. McMenomy, Ph.D. for Scholars Online
2019-20: Mondays and Wednesdays, 6:00 - 7:30 p.m. Eastern Time
60: Mon, Apr 20, 2020
Please post in the forum for the day a short essay in response to this question:
From the end of the Second World War through the 1980s, political power was largely polarized along the axis defined by the two global superpowers, the United States and the USSR. For that period, for a lesser power to ally with one of the superpowers more or less definitionally entailed alienating the other. A few countries that had large populations and were in general unwilling to be polarized in quite the same way (China and India, in particular) were able to resist this binary division somewhat, but even they were not wholly independent of it.
Two questions present themselves from this matrix, particularly with reference to the Asian nations we've been discussing so far:
First, what does this kind of polarization does for the political makeup of a smaller nation or cluster of nations? How is it reflected in their internal politics and their relations with other nations?
Second, what happens to that tension when one of the superpowers ceases to be perceived as a superpower (as when the USSR broke up)? Does it tend to yield the game to the surviving player, so to speak, or does the loss of the binary tension tend to promote a wider spread of alliances and interests? What does that do to or for world security?
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