As the world becomes more of a global village, so does the propensity towards conflict between opposing states, or between non-state opponents and a state/states. These conflicts have been brought under severe scrutiny and specific descriptions and definitions of their nature arrived at. This paper will be discussing the similarities and differences between interstate conflicts and asymmetric conflicts.
Interstate conflicts have been understood to be conflicts between two different states brought about by divergent views over various issues that are of interest to the warring states and their allies, or of interest to international peace and security. Through the use of militarized coercion, one country may force another country to adopt a proposed stance over a particular issue. History has shown the United States to be a vocal campaigner against dictatorship, leading to various interstate conflicts; including with Iraq, Libya and most recently North Korea. Interstate conflicts tend to be symmetric in nature. The opponents in symmetric conflicts posses the same strategic capabilities that include a trained force and weapon systems (Viotti & Kauppi, 2012).
However, asymmetric conflicts exist when one opponent, mostly non-state, employs unprecedented techniques to undermine the military, strategic strength of the opponent, mostly a state. Asymmetric conflicts mostly exist as terrorist acts as a result of insurgence. An example of an asymmetric conflict is the war between al Qaeda and allies of the United States. The incomparable military capabilities between the two factions create the asymmetric scenario especially because the non-state opponent constantly changes tact and harms their opponents(Viotti & Kauppi, 2012).
In conclusion, the main similarity between interstate conflict and asymmetric conflict is the ability of several states to pursue a perceived common threat. This can be seen in the support that the United States was given while pursuing Taliban and al Qaeda, and also while aiding in the toppling of Muammar Kaddafi, the former Libyan dictator.
The geographical and cultural distribution of various regions creates a diverse marketplace that is of importance to the global economics. This diverse marketplace can be explained in detail by the use of classical theory of international trade that was developed by Adam Smith and David Ricardo. They argue that since each region/country is diverse in terms of capabilities and resources, every country should therefore specialise in their area of strength. This is bound to provide each country with a comparative advantage that would enable the creation of a market where the countries will trade with each other with respect to their respective comparative advantages.
However, it is far-fetched to assume that such an environment is liberal. Despite the comparative advantage that may be existent, several economic disparities exist in this environment. For example, a country like the US has the capital to develop cheaper agricultural produce due to its technological capabilities (Friedman, 2008). Exporting this cheaper agricultural produce to agricultural dependent nations will kill the domestic products of those countries due to competitive pricing. It is this complacent nature of liberalization that attracts import restrictions and market imperfections.
Lastly, despite the efforts to provide trade preferences through trade treaties and subsidies in terms of trade, the lack of a unilateral currency makes it unideal to pursue global trade liberalization. Every country has a unique currency which affects its domestic policies and national interests. Liberalization is therefore not prudent because of the diverse domestic monetary policies which determine the currency exchange rates, interest rates and supply of money in the market. Liberalization is also not attractive for domestic fiscal policies which affect spending and taxation.
In conclusion, for liberalization to achieve its initial intention, several standardization measures have to be effectuated across the global market. This is majorly because of the different currencies, domestic policies and politics that affect the interests of individual nations. The global market should therefore seek other means of opening up trade and money flows before relying on liberalization.
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