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Worse Than a MonolithAlliance Politics and Problems of Coercive Diplomacy in Asia$
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Thomas J. Christensen

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780691142609

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: October 2017

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691142609.001.0001

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(p.260) Chapter 8 Conclusion
Worse Than a Monolith

Thomas J. Christensen

Princeton University Press

This chapter reviews the historical and theoretical lessons highlighted by the book. It shows how disorganization and discord in alliance politics has made the maintenance of peace through coercive diplomacy in Asia very difficult. It considers two separate sets of dynamics among enemy alliances that carry theoretically important lessons for the study of international relations. The first set of dynamics relate to alliance coordination, problems of burden-sharing within an alliance, and unclear signaling in an alliance's coercive diplomacy. The second set of dynamics involves potentially differential levels of devotion to specific revisionist conflicts. The chapter concludes with a discussion of other cases of alliance disunity and conflict escalation to which the theoretical approaches offered here might apply, including pan-Arabism and the Six Day War of 1967, the conflict between Israel and Palestine, and the global war on terror.

Keywords:   alliance politics, conflict escalation, coercive diplomacy, Asia, international relations, burden-sharing, pan-Arabism, Six Day War, Israel, Palestine

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