The Social Order Of The European Union Essay

The Social Order Of The European Union Essay

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Over the course of European history, security dilemmas among the European powers led to a period of great civil unrest from the years 1910 until 1945. Consequently, arms races and various alliances spawned from distrust, led to two world wars that affectively marked history as some of mankind 's most darkest times. In contrast, European states were able to enjoy an unprecedented time of economic and political success between 1945-2016, ultimately forming the European Union. As actors are purposive and goal seeking, they choose policies that yield joint gains and that produce the best outcome for their respective power. As a result, the interaction among the same set of actors within the same global distribution of power, a hegemonic power structure characterized by American economic and military preponderance, produced vastly different outcomes due to varying historical components within each time period as explained by the theoretical concept of prisoners dilemma.
Atop the social order of these European powers is the notion of self-help as in no one will defend you, rather you must protect yourself. This notion creates a security dilemma as states are driven to acquire more and more power, constructing a vicious cycle. This causes problems of collaboration between powers centering on arms races and public goods provision. Firstly, European powers experienced a security dilemma between 1910 and 1945 as a result of war. Theoretically, each power assumes to know the equilibrium strategies of the other powers. As a result, each power chooses to defect in nash equilibrium, as neither power has anything to gain by switching their strategy to cooperate or to choose peace. Consequently, powers choose to defect or participate in war, he...


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...th Britain and France to combat Germany with the hegemonic order characterized by American power backing the war effort.
In contrast, the suppressed security dilemma of the period, 1945 through 2016, created a period of stable cooperation. Beginning in 1950, post World War II, countries united as a European Coal and Steel community in order to secure post war peace, creating the modern day European Union. The union serves to provide global public goods in areas such as health, governance and security. As a result, these powers would choose to cooperate in a theoretical prisoner’s dilemma nash equilibrium as the dominant strategy, as a world power supported by the United States. Accordingly, these powers are able to experience public goods in an environment of stable cooperation as this strategy reduces the threat of war and the outcomes of insecurity and conflict.

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