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vii Preface This book examines the promise and pitfalls of positive engagement (the use of diplomacy and material inducements) as a way of influencing the behavior of regimes considered threatening to the United States and the international community . My interest flows from the disappointing record of policies tilted toward threats and sanctions when dealing with such regimes. Military force, although sometimes suitable for undermining the capabilities of refractory adversaries, has (both in the form of threats and in the form of actual military intervention) an unimpressive record of altering policies. At the same time, most of the literature on economic sanctions judges such measures as rather ineffective. The lackluster record of coercive and punitive policies notwithstanding, the assumptions behind such policies are rarely challenged by political scientists, who with some exceptions have invested little effort in examining alternatives. Academic indifference is all the harder to account for since other social sciences, especially sociology and social psychology, have exhibited roughly equal interest in rewards and punishments as paths to behavior modification. One of my tasks in this book is to account for why policymakers and political scientists are so loath to consider alternatives to generally ineffectual policies. Further, it offers a theoretical framework within which to study the possibilities for positive engagement , a framework that I apply to five instances of U.S. efforts to alter the policies of adversary regimes. The failure of negative sanctions does not imply the necessary success of positive inducements, as the conditions for a favorable outcome in either case are restrictive. With respect to the latter, our starting point is a closer look at two purposes that positive incentives could serve. The first is to offer an adversary some concession intended to produce a desired counterconcession. The objective is a trade involving policy changes on the target’s side; inducements offered in this spirit play out in the context of what I call the exchange model. Our task is to determine what objectives can most plausibly be attained in this fashion and what conditions bode best for success. The second aim of positive inducements is more ambitious: to change the other side’s basic motivations so that bribes and punishments eventually become less necessary. The purpose is not so much to promote a trade as to catalyze a thorough overhaul of relations by altering the other side’s policy priorities. Inducements offered with this purpose partake of what I call the catalytic model. I examine the logic behind the conceptions of viii PREFACE positive inducements associated with these two models and the conditions for success or failure in both. Success in the exchange model requires, above all, that inducements be of a magnitude sufficient to offset incentives to undesirable behavior on the target ’s part. I explain why it is often very difficult in the U.S. political context to offer concessions that are objectively sufficient, and I examine the circumstances within the target country that make it more or less receptive to an exchange of concessions—a condition of latent regime instability boding best for such receptivity. With regard to the catalytic model, I explain how domestic change could be encouraged by modifying, from outside, the structure of politically relevant interests and preferences within the target state.I survey a few historical instances where such catalysis was a partial purpose of positive engagement, and I explain why regime instability, even more than in an exchange context, is a requirement for successful inducements with a catalytic intent. I apply this theoretical framework to illuminate the conditions for the successful use of inducements in five countries whose policies have been considered especially objectionable by the United States. In working on this book, I have benefited from the insights and comments of several scholars including Etel Solingen, Larry Berman, Arthur Stein, Donna Nincic, Robert Litwak, and an anonymous reviewer. I also acknowledge the valuable research assistance of Kali Rubaii. THE LOGIC OF POSITIVE ENGAGEMENT ...

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Additional Information

ISBN
9780801463013
Related ISBN
9780801450068
MARC Record
OCLC
774285567
Pages
224
Launched on MUSE
2014-01-01
Language
English
Open Access
No
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