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Ethics in Foreign Policy

Postmodern States as the Entrepreneurs of Kantian Ethics

Sárka Waisová and Ladislav Cabada

Two important positions might be observed in the discussion about the importance of ethics for international politics and the relevance of ethics for the theoretical analysis of international relations. Some deny any connection between ethics and international politics; others believe that moral values are an essential component of international relations. The contributors assume that in an epoch of military interventions waged in the name of humanity and just war it is impossible to deny moral and ethical demands in international politics. The main hypothesis of this book is that the post-modern states are playing the role of norm entrepreneurs and promote Kantian ethics in international relations. The articles analyse in five case studies the development in post-modern states towards a moral foreign policy. Canada, Germany, Norway, the Netherlands, and Slovenia are included in this analysis showing that Kantian ethics in international affairs is the ideal-typical position, and that some states have developed a foreign policy tending to this position.
Contents: Postmodern States as the Entrepreneurs of Kantian Ethics in International Relations – Canada: A Humane Internationalist in the Shadow of a Large Neighbour – The Federal Republic of Germany: The Gentle Giant – Norway: A Humanitarian Superpower? – The Netherlands: Human Rights Above Own Interest? – Slovenia: Pioneer and Mentor of the Western Balkans?