The Levels Of Analysis Model

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The Levels of Analysis model is a modular approach to understanding the international system. In order to understand events within the international community, one applies different filters of examination of those events at different levels of focus to rationally explain their causes and effects. At the most broad, there is the global or international system level. This relates to the global distribution of power, which actors are in the most infuential positions, the international law and how key actors operate in the anarchic system. There is next, the more focused international level, or more specifically, the dyadic or tryadic level depending on the superpowers in play and the balance of power. At this level the relationships between …show more content…

In 1991, the collapse of one of the world 's longtime superpowers, the USSR, showed a massive change to the international system and the balance of power. At international system level, the Soviet Union, at the time of its collapse was one side of a tripolar balance of power. The United States sat at the top of the food chain over the USSR and Mao 's China; they had been gradually advancing their lead in the arms race ever since it began and at this point they were in a position of relative superiority relative to the balance of power at the time. This is not to say, though, that the Soviet Union was in a position of weakness; to the rest of the world, the contrary was the case. The Communist party in the USSR was perceived, by the rest of the international community, to still have their iron fist as firmly clenched as ever. At the international level, the Cold War in the 80 's was peaking in its intensity after Reagan 's abandonment of Nixon 's policy of detente. Both superpowers were more armed then they had ever been. The Soviet Union and the United States had been engaged in this Cold War since the end of WWII, essentially an almost 50 year flexing contest between the world 's two unquestionable superpowers. The Cold War was an almost Hollywood-like struggle; or it was at least made seem like one by the governenments of the parties involved. To the US, the USSR was, as Reagan used to say, the "Evil Empire." They were the

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