Alternative Options for U.S. Policy Toward the International Order

Alternative Options for U.S. Policy Toward the International Order


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Since 1945, the United States has pursued its global interests through creating and maintaining international economic institutions, bilateral and regional security organizations, and liberal political norms; these ordering mechanisms are often collectively referred to as the international order. This report examines options for future U.S. policies with respect to the order.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780833098337
Publisher: RAND Corporation
Publication date: 09/29/2017
Pages: 130
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x (d)

Table of Contents

Preface iii

Tables vii

Summary ix

Abbreviations xiii

Chapter 1 Introduction 1

Chapter 2 Key Choices About the Rules of the International Order 5

What Are U.S. Goals for the International Order? 7

Who Makes the Rules? 8

How Binding Are the Rules-and on Whom? 13

Chapter 3 Alternative Visions of International Order 17

Coalition Against Revisionism 19

Democratic Order 24

Great-Power Concert 2.0 29

Global Constitutional Order 34

Policy Implications Under Each Vision of Order 37

Chapter 4 U.S. Policies for Alternative Visions of Order: International Economic Policies 41

Economic Policies Consistent with All Visions of Order 42

Coalition Against Revisionism 46

Democratic Order 49

Great-Power Concert 2.0 51

Global Constitutional Order 53

Potential for Disruption in the Economic Order 54

Chapter 5 U.S. Policies for Alternative Visions of Order: Great-Power Relations 57

Coalition Against Revisionism 58

Democratic Order 61

Great-Power Concert 2.0 64

Global Constitutional Order 67

Example: Russia and NATO Open Door 71

Example: China and Offshore Island Disputes 73

Chapter 6 U.S. Policies for Alternative Visions of Order: Defense Strategy 75

Coalition Against Revisionism 77

Democratic Order 83

Great-Power Concert 2.0 87

Global Constitutional Order 90

Overall Findings: Cross-Cutting Priorities and Lessons 93

Chapter 7 Lessons and Implications 99

Lesson 1 An Order's Character Will Likely Flow from Its Strategy for Achieving Great-Power Peace 100

Lesson 2 No Single Order Offers the United States the Ability to Place Equal Value on All Four Goals of Order 104

Lesson 3 Preferences of Other States Will Affect the Viability of Each Vision 104

Lesson 4 Coherent Views About the International Order Can Strengthen U.S. Policy-but Only So Long as Different Strands of U.S. Foreign Policy Are Consistent with the Desired Vision of Order 105


Origin Stories for Visions of Order 107

References 113

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