As such, Joseph Stalin of USSR blamed the WWII on capitalism and was bent on ensuring its collapse while Roosevelt aimed at ending the spread of fascism communism especially in Eastern Europe. The cold war thus began in 1946-1991. It was regarded as Cold War since there was no direct fighting between the two superpowers but use of proxy wars in Korea, Vietnam, and Afghanistan among other areas. The war escalated leading to arms and space race with potential of culminating into an all-out nuclear WWIII or annihilation.
The end of the Cold War led to redefinition of international conflict. While the Cold War involved conflicts between sovereign nation states (inter-state conflict), in post-Cold War period internal conflicts are predominant. Yilmaz observed that “from May 1988, as the cold War was coming to an end, up to present day, out of the 47 conflicts in which United Nations has intervened, only 3 are inter-state in character.”1Now some conflicts are considered threats to international peace even though states are not fighting. The aim of this essay is to evaluate how conflict has changed in the post-Cold War using two international relations theories: realism and liberalism. It will argue that the Cold War had framed all conflicts hence the end of cold war was a watershed in contemporary conflicts. This change is enhanced by democratization, end of bipolarity, increased globalization, and redefinition of sovereignty, international coordination of security policy as well as increased role of international organizations such as the UN.
There have been various wars in the international system ranging from civil wars to wars of international scale such as the First World War and Second World War culminating into the Cold War. Due to the size and character of the wars, Goldstein et al. Acknowledges the difficulty involved in defining war.2 As such, many theories have been advanced as to what causes war but none of these theories has a strong empirical