States protect their own interest generally defined in terms of maximizing power and security;4.
States co-exist in an anarchic international system (noauthoritative hierarchy);5.
States must rely primarily on themselves to protect themselves;(7
Fleet / China will not come!);6.
States do so through balance of power (treaties) and deterrenceand (conventional and nuclear).
Realists and Morality
Realists believe that no rules or norms that restrain a state;2.
Hans Morgenthau said in
Politics Among Nations
, “…normativesystems… keep
aspirations for power within socially tolerable
bounds… morality mores and law intervene in order to
protect society against disruption and the individual against enslavement and
John Mearsheimer has argued, “The most powerful states in the
system create and shape institutions so that they can maintain
their share of world power, or even increase it.” (IMF)
Realists do not acknowledge the importance or strength of non-state actors such as NGOs and MNCs.
Neorealism or Structural Realism
The core difference between the traditional realists andneorealists lies in the emphasis placed on the structure of theinternational system.2.
The neorealists do not accept any overarching authority. Theywould rather have anarchy than an order or an internationalsystem based on a principle.