By Karin Dokken (auth.)
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Additional resources for African Security Politics Redefined
It is also anarchical in the sense that it lacks a set of common norms to guide its behavior. The states are considered to be rational and unitary actors whose main goal is to strengthen their own national interests. Second, as conflict and war are rooted in human nature, conflict is the normal condition/state in international politics. This is primarily owing to a scarcity of resources, which leads to constant competition among states. To protect their own national interests (primarily defined as state survival), states will make efforts to hinder others and to increase their own possibilities and capabilities.
The end of that competition meant a decisive change in Western policy toward developing countries. ). The new geopolitical situation particularly affected economic and military aid to African countries. For economic aid, it meant that conditions were changed and sharpened. For military aid, it simply meant a substantial decrease. To a large degree, African states were now left in a security-political vacuum. Characteristics of the African State As already indicated, the African state differs a great deal from the one we are familiar with in the North, that is, the Weberian state.
Third, power is the central substantive focus of realism. The actors are primarily occupied with balancing their own power in relation to the power of others. Power is always unequally distributed among the actors. Some states are stronger than others. The combination of these three elements generates a considerable degree of fear because states want to strengthen their own interests and their own power at the expense of other states. As the anarchical structures of international society do not limit the actions of states, realism will emphasize conflict and competition in international politics.