Balance of Power

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Balance of Power[edit]

In international relations and diplomacy studies, balance of power defines the equilibrium of power that prevents one nation or party from dominating another. The idea is that when weaker nations are confronted with a significant external threat, they seek to protect themselves by forming alliances with stronger countries, or employ other tactics to match the power of the other side. According to the theory, national security is increased when military capabilities are distributed equally, so that no one party is able to override the interests of another. The term first came into use to define the European power structure and series of shifting alliances during the Napoleonic Wars up until the First World War. Another example is the Cold War period, when the US and the Soviet Union established their own spheres of influence, and the nuclear threat maintained a balance of power between the two super powers.

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