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The Next Great War?The Roots of World War I and the Risk of U.S.-China Conflict$
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Richard N. Rosecrance and Steven E. Miller

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780262028998

Published to MIT Press Scholarship Online: May 2016

DOI: 10.7551/mitpress/9780262028998.001.0001

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Allies, Overbalance, and War

Allies, Overbalance, and War

Chapter:
(p.45) 4 Allies, Overbalance, and War
Source:
The Next Great War?
Author(s):

Richard N. Rosecrance

Publisher:
The MIT Press
DOI:10.7551/mitpress/9780262028998.003.0004

Bipolar alliances did not deter war in 1914, they made war seem possible if not inevitable. In that year great powers had at least two motivations: not to lose a war and to maintain their alliances. But the second might involve supporting an ally in a conflict that the Great Power could not win. In fact, an overbalance of power would have been a better preventative and it existed in the Concert of Europe until 1848 and in foreshortened form in Bismarck’s alliances of 1871-1890. It also produced the end of the Cold War in 1989.

Keywords:   Balance of power, Overbalance of power, Sequencing, Cold War, US-China Overbalance

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