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Based on an essay that has been hailed as one of the most influential policy pieces published in the last decade, Robert Cooper sets out a radical new interpretation of the shape of the world in this path-breaking book The Breaking of Nations.
Cooper argues that there are three types of states in the world that deal with each other in different ways: 'pre-modern' parts of the world, without fully functioning states, 'modern' nation states, concerned with territorial sovereignty and national interests, and 'post-modern' states in which foreign and domestic policy are inextricably intertwined, tools of governance are shared and security is no longer based on control over territory or the balance of power. Among first world nations, societies may operate on the basis of laws, openness and cooperative security. But when dealing with a hostile outside enemy, civilized countries need to revert to tougher methods from an earlier era - force, pre-emptive attack, deception - if we are to safeguard peaceful co-existence throughout the civilized world
Like Robert Kagan's best-selling Of Paradise and Power, The Breaking of Nations is essential reading for a dangerous age, a cautionary tale for superpowers, and a prescient examination of international relations in the twenty-first century.