The International Purposes of Military Power



Power is a form of influence and, like other forms of influence, it has several dimensions. Power is coercive influence based on the threat of value deprivation or penalties. Such penalties may take several forms, one of them being military. Military power is ultimately the power to destroy and kill, or to occupy and control, and hence to coerce. In the international system, military power — like other forms of influence — is a relation among states that permits one government to induce another to behave in a way which the latter would not have chosen freely. Military power thus permits a degree of control over the environment.


International System Foreign Affair Military Force Military Power Military Strength 
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© Palgrave Macmillan, a division of Macmillan Publishers Limited 1970

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