Unipole’s Grand-Strategy options

When the unipolarity prevails in the world, the grand strategy of the unipole is the most important variable conditioning both the prospects for peace and the durability of a unipolar system. The grand strategy is also significant factor mediating between the structure of international system and on the other hand conflict-producing and competition-inducing mechanisms.

The grand strategy covers both military and economic issues. Monteiro defines three broad military strategies and their sub-categories as well as two broad economic strategies:

  • military strategies: offensive dominance, defensive dominance, disengagement
  • economic strategies: accommodation, containment

Finally, he analyses and compartmentalizes the US selected foreign policy 1990-2010.

Monteiro’s recommendation of the Grand Strategy for the US is “defensive accommodation”. This strategy combines a military strategy aimed at maintaining the international status quo with an economic strategy that makes room for accommodating the interests of rising major powers.

According to neorealism, the states are assumed to be rational and Monteiro’s recommendation is also based on the rationality assumption. However, the rational strategic calculus of the unipole is conditioned by myriad practical and other factors beyond the structure of the international system.