Portal:International relations

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Welcome to the International Relations Portal

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International relations are relationships between countries, including the roles of States, inter-governmental organizations (IGOs), international nongovernmental organizations (INGOs), non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and multinational corporations (MNCs). International relations are both an academic and public policy field, and can be either positive or normative, as international relations seek to analyze as well as to formulate the foreign policy of particular States. The study of international relations is often considered a branch of political science (especially after 1988 UNESCO nomenclature), but an important sector of academia prefer to treat it as an interdisciplinary field of study. Aspects of international relations have been studied for thousands of years, since the time of Thucydides, but international relations became a separate and definable discipline in the early 20th century.

Apart from political science, international relations draw upon such diverse fields as economics, history, international law, philosophy, geography, social work, sociology, anthropology, criminology, psychology, gender studies, and cultural studies / culturology. International relations involve a diverse range of issues, including, but not limited to: globalization, state sovereignty, international security, ecological sustainability, nuclear proliferation, nationalism, economic development, global finance, terrorism, organized crime, human security, foreign interventionism, human rights.

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League of Nations Anachronous Map.PNG

The League of Nations was an intergovernmental organization founded as a result of the Paris Peace Conference that ended the First World War. It was the first permanent international organization whose principal mission was to maintain world peace. Its primary goals, as stated in its Covenant, included preventing wars through collective security and disarmament, and settling international disputes through negotiation and arbitration. The diplomatic philosophy behind the League represented a fundamental shift from the preceding hundred years. The League lacked an armed force of its own and so depended on the Great Powers to enforce its resolutions, which they were often very reluctant to do. The League ultimately proved incapable of preventing aggression by the fascist powers in 1930s. The onset of the Second World War made it clear that the League had failed in its primary purpose—to avoid any future world war. The United Nations effectively replaced it after World War II and inherited a number of agencies and organisations founded by the League. (more...)

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Hendrik Pieter Nicolaas Muller

Hendrik Pieter Nicolaas Muller (2 April 1859 - 11 August 1941) was a Dutch businessman, diplomat, world traveller, publicist, and philanthropist. Muller started his career as a businessman, trading with East and West Africa. In his mid-twenties he travelled to Zanzibar, Mozambique, and South Africa for business purposes, but also showed himself a keen ethnographer, collecting ethnographic artifacts and writing reports about the societies and people he encountered on his way. In 1896 he was first appointed consul and later consul general for the Orange Free State. Muller held this position all through the Second Boer War and his high-profile performance as European representative for this Boer republic won him considerable fame and notoriety, which lasted all his life. In 1919 the Dutch government appointed him envoy extraordinary and minister plenipotentiary to Romania, and later to Czechoslovakia, where he retired in 1932. As diplomat Muller strongly promoted Dutch business interests, especially in oil and electrotechnics.

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The Macartney Embassy
The Macartney Embassy was a British mission to China in 1793. It is named for the first envoy of Great Britain to China, George Macartney, who led the endeavour. The goal of the embassy was to convince Emperor Qianlong of China to ease restrictions on trade between Great Britain and China by allowing Great Britain to have a permanent embassy in Beijing, and reduced tariffs on traders in Guangzhou.

Photo credit:"A study of History", Arnold Toynbee

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