Do international norms have an impact on security issues? Why? Norms can be understood as rules for standard behavior. Norms are a common belief or understanding usually shared by a majority. International norms are determined by the international community and they usually set the stage for the behavior of individual countries. These norms shape international as well as domestic security issues. These norms shape Inter-state behavior, they also shape the security policies of nation-states and they also serve to set certain normative standards about how the world should be.
In this paper we will look at how the emergence of certain norms, taboos and International laws have contributed to International security concerns and sometimes also problems of mistrust. The major schools of International relations theory such as unilateralism and unrealism have not satisfactorily confronted the evolution of norms of Interstate behavior. However the constructivist literature draws on a variety of theoretical texts and empirical studies to argue that norms have illustrative power independent of structural and situational constraints. The belief that all norms are created by the powerful can be Halloween.
Don’t waste your time!
Order your assignment!
As international norms have come to be shaped by a number of factors such as newer democracies, pressure groups, international and humanitarian organizations. Humanitarian values, global security, moral ethical behavior by powerful states are some of the values that have given direction to and reflect international norms as illustrated by the following quote. ” The case of nuclear taboo is important theoretically because it challenges conventional views that international norms, especially in the security area, are created mainly by and for the powerful,” (Tangential, 2005, 7).
The use of certain weapons or their prohibitions rather are shaped by factors that are not limited to decisions by nation states. The stimulation of a weapon and the mass opinion against it are responsible for giving rise to an international norm prohibiting that weapon. A case in the point is the chemical weapons. Stratifications of a weapon gives rise too taboo which then gets politicized. According to Price this is what ultimately led to the decision of countries In WI to refrain from the use of COW.
In 1925 the Geneva Convention prohibited countries from first use of COW. An example Price (1995,77) states Is how In 1940 Britain considered resorting to COW In the occasion of a German Invasion but had to discard such thoughts as those acts would mark a departure from British traditions and principles. This shows that the public pollen mattered and public pollen highly consisted of principles that believed COW were Immoral and could not be used as a resort even In times of desperation.
International norms however not always go In a singular deletion of cooperation and upholding of humanitarian values. Constructivist argue that international interactions can only advance international norms towards a culture of mutual help and friendliness. But this argument is not supported by the reality of International politics. Sometimes it triggers fresh rivalry or intensifies conflicts. An example here is during the five years from August 2003 to December 2008 seven rounds of Six Party Talks on nuclear issues on the Korean Peninsula.
The outcome of the six nations’ continuous interaction during this time, however, was not in North Koreans acceptance of the norm of non-proliferation, but in its conducting on May 25 2009 its second nuclear test. Even though the aim of the other five countries was to prohibit North Korea from doing so (Executing, 2011: 233-264). Thus, the idea of international norm indeed may be to uphold the supremacy of a few and states like North Korea like to defy that, Just like India and Pakistan as well.
Hegemony advance new international norms to other states to accept norms set out by the Hegemony which originated to serve its own security needs, by normative persuasion, external inducement, and internal reconstruction. Sometimes countries accept to do so as the prevailing internal conditions in its own country allow to recognize the importance of such a norm. In other cases, such a norm is against the national security interest of a Tate and that is where a conflict of interest arises. When Total Briar Payees became Indian Prime Minister, he authorized nuclear weapons testing at Popcorn.
The United States forcibly condemned the testing, promised sanctions, and voted in favor of a United Nations Security Council Resolution condemning these tests at Popcorn. President Clinton during that time imposed heavy economic sanctions on India, which included cutting off all military and economic aid, freezing loans by American banks to state owned Indian companies, prohibiting the issue of American aerospace technology and uranium exports to India, and requiring the US to oppose all loan demands by India to international lending agencies . This created an air of mistrust.
Indeed we see how international norms, and taboos affect security policies across the globe. Florin argues that the constructivist have not yet given a theoretical basis for explaining why one norm instead of the other becomes institutionalized (Florin, 1996: 40, 363-389). International norms have varying impacts on security issues globally. As an example , the middle east can react in a complete opposite way to a norm that is widely accepted by the others. In conclusion, we can say that international norms govern policy agendas concerning security for different states.
International norms set standards of behavior for states in security matters. Failure to do so is followed by intense scrutiny by the international community. The case of Syria is an example of that. This is because international norms condemn certain weapons, or acts and as such they have strict adherence structures entailed in them. Breaking away from these norms has its own consequences, it could lead to eyeing boycotted by other states, This of course affects how states think, act in relation to each other.
This also affects how or what measures states can or will take in order to feel secure. On many occasions, adherence to international norms may make a state feel less secure and look weak in front of the eyes of its own citizens. Therefore what can be said is that yes, in some cases international norms have led to friendly cooperation between states, yet on other occasions, it has led to hostility accompanied by an unconventional arms race, triggering new international conflicts and intensifying already existing international conflicts.