It supposedly achieves certain results (e.g. status quo, détente) that are pivotal in the stability of international relations.
These principles expound on detailed explanations and illustrations that underscored the realist perspectives in international politics - that nations must advance their own self-interest because: a) it is more effective in achieving political objectives; b) it balances international powers; c) it is better than the idealist/moralistic approach in pursuing not just effective foreign policy, but social and other domestic objectives as well; and, d) it is crucial in a state’s very survival.
Morgenthau’s arguments cited the experience of the Second World War and international relations in a post-war period to drive home his point. He criticized the political idealism that preceded the First World War, the political theory, which he believed paved the way for the outbreak of the Second World War. He used the British experience as an example:
Neville Chamberlain’s politics of appeasement were… inspired by good motives; he was… less motivated by considerations of personal power than were many other British prime ministers and he sought to preserve peace and to assure the happiness of all concerned. Yet his policies helped to make the Second World War inevitable.1
Morgenthau cited Churchill’s policy which apparently ran counter to Chamberlain’s policy of appeasement. He noted that Churchill was able to successfully navigate international politics than his predecessor because of the former’s strategy of advancing Britain’s power in the world stage.
Interestingly, the seemingly selfish policy of self-advancement for states becomes an important tool for achieving and maintaining peace as well. As power becomes the principal theme of international politics, states wittingly an unwittingly strive to maintain an equilibrium or balance of it by attaining, preserving and/or increasing their