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Poland's Reason of State in the Creation of a New International Order. Foreign Policy as Poland's Reason of State in the 21st Century



The article analyzes the Polish reason of state in changing international order understood as the loss of hegemon position by the United States. The author defines the reason of state as an analytical operant and relates it to the security and sovereignty of a state in the international environment. The text also outlines possibilities of development of Poland's reason of state in the region and global geopolitics.
Polish Political Science Yearbook
ISSN: 0208–7375 Journal homepage:
Poland’s Reason of State in the Creation of a New International Order.
Foreign Policy as Poland’s Reason of State in the 21st Century
Piotr Lewandowski
ORCID: 0000-0002-3664-4815
To cite this article please include the following information:
• Journal title: Polish Political Science Yearbook
• Volume number: 50
• Year of publication: 2021
• Published ahead-of-print
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[APA Style]: Lewandowski, P. (2021). Poland’s Reason of State in the Creation of a New Interna-
tional Order. Foreign Policy as Poland’s Reason of State in the 21st Century. Polish Political Science
Yearbook, 50(issue number), pages.
[Chicago Style]: Piotr Lewandowski, “Poland’s Reason of State in the Creation of a New Interna-
tional Order. Foreign Policy as Poland’s Reason of State in the 21st CenturyPolish Political Science
Yearbook 50, no. [issue number] (2021).
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Polish Political science Yearbook, vol. 50 (2021), pp. 1–15
DOI: PL ISSN 0208-7375
Piotr Lewandowski
War Studies University (Poland)
ORCID: 0000-0002-3664-4815
Poland’s Reason of State in the Creation of a New
International Order. Foreign Policy as Poland’s Reason
of State in the 21st Century
Abstract: e article analyzes the Polish reason of state in changing international order un-
derstood as the loss of hegemon position by the United States. e author defines the reason
of state as an analytical operant and relates it to the security and sovereignty of astate in the
international environment. e text also outlines possibilities of development of Poland’s
reason of state in the region and global geopolitics.
Keywords: security, Poland’s reason of state, geopolitics, new international order
e changes taking place nowadays in the area of international relations arouse concerns and
require standing political observers. ere are also certain constant features of states that
need to adjust themselves to the variables originating from the environment of international
security. Such constants are, for instance, sovereignty and the reason of state. ey need
permanent adjustment to the prevailing condition, even though they are not susceptible to
substantial and rapid changes that sometimes are required by the situation.
is text deals with the issues relating to the Polish reason of state in the transforming
environment of international security. e first problem conforming to the assumption
relating to the reason of state studies (Swi, 2010) is the implementation of this notion in
the conditions of the science of national and international security. Another issue is to define
Poland’s reason of state in the context of the qualitative change of contemporary interna-
tional relations determining global and regional security. e main adopted assumption
has been the need to work out Poland’s reason of state given the changing policies, position,
Piotr Lewandowski
and strategy of the United States in the world and the area of the eastern flank of NATO.
is text also presumes that recognition of political realism is an appropriate approach to
constructing the sectors of implementation of the Polish reason of state in the context of
the crisis of the Atlantic option of national and regional security.
e methodology used in the article comes from social sciences and studies on security.
Owing to the characteristics of the described phenomena, aturn toward prognostics and
heuristic methods has been applied. Aconsiderable part of the study has been based on
the scenario method, which is adescription of a future possible and probable situation
characterizing the researched phenomenon (object, system, process) (Świeboda, 2017) while
its aim is to determine the future logical and coherent system of events as aresult of proposed
decisions (Perycz, 2009). e scenario methodology has been modified and adapted to the
analytical features since such aform allows for generating possible policy options in the
future and investigating their consequences (Bodio & Chodubski, 2003). e scenarios have
been based on existing (in combination with analyzing relevant literature) and hypothetical
information (Świeboda, 2015). Also, the methods of deduction and induction typical of the
prognostic approach have been used (Secomski, 1971).
Reason of State – An Attempt to Describe and Define
e Polish scientific literature on the subject struggles with the problem of defining the
reason of state. Ryszard Zięba, Czesław Maj, and Kazimierz Łastawski point out the problems
arising because of the multitude of views regarding the reason of state arising from different
traditions and more or less successful attempts to transplant this notion from Anglo-Saxon
literature onto the Polish soil. e reason of state is not astandalone concept which – as it
was indicated – is hard to define. However, this aspect should be looked at from adifferent
angle – as an opportunity provided by this type of phenomenon. For the needs of analysis,
for the needs of research, the reason of state may be defined each time differently, keeping
in mind individual guidelines that are typical of this notion.
Alongside the assumption of numerous approaches and interdisciplinarity of research,
operationalization and conceptualization of the reason of state should refer to the essence
of this concept with aneed to consider the minimum scope of its meaning. is notion has
been devalued by its being used in public discourse, has assumed symbolic and narrational
references, and has become aconcept of mythical dimensions, which can be placed in ever
different sequences of meaningful elements or included in new contexts since they contain
akind of aminimum residuum of meaning that makes it possible to recognize the same
signs in different contexts (Howarth, 2008). erefore, it is worth attempting to determine the
minimum elementary scope of meaning of the reason of state, which in analytical contexts
may assume abroader form of aresearch operant.
e basis of reference for understanding the notion of the reason of state is the state and
its prerogatives. In the traditional sense, it was the state to which determination of reason
Poland’s Reason of State in the Creation of a New International Order 3
or interest referred to (Łastawski, 2016). e very notion of the reason of state has been
given an enormous number of definitions and has been used to describe diverse situations
(Rzegocki, 2008).
With aview to the above postulate for the need to determine the minimum semantic
field of the reason of state, it should be defined generally enough to constitute abasis for
interdisciplinary approaches and at the same time in sufficient detail to grasp the crux of
the matter without introducing additional redundant descriptions and enhancements. e
holistic approach to defining the reason of state is needed because of the functioning of
this notion in many disciplines of political and administrative, security, historical science,
or legal sciences. Precision effects rather from the postulate of the need to understand the
reason of state within the same categorization framework.
Abroad approach to the reason of state demands that it is referred to the securitization of
state existence. Securement is understood as apolitical process in the form of amechanism of
creating strategies for resolving problems of and threats to state security (Szalacha-Jarmużek,
2013): “securitization itself can be interpreted as atechnique or tool of governmental security
practices” (Gupta, 2006). It takes place in the following areas of the state security sector:
political (which refers to the protection of sovereignty), military– with regard to survival,
social – in the protection of identity, economic – for protection and improvement of well-
being, environmental protection – as protection and building of sustainable development
of the state (Musioł, 2018).
e notion of the reason of state may be narrowed down and made more specific through
anatural synthesis of political realism and national interest since it is political realism that
“transfers the notion of interest defined in the categories of power” (Morgenthau, 2010).
Concerning the reason of state and its minimum assumptions, such acategory will be power
(maximization of opportunities), development, and progress (minimization of threats). In
political realism, the latter are more attainable for medium-sized states aspiring toward
the category of power, although it should always be the state’s goal, also identified by the
reason of state.
Equating the reason of state to the category of national interest may be misinterpreted.
It is avital interest of the state that is at stake, which directly in the discourse are frequently
identified with the reason of state (Kuźniar, 2006). Not every state’s interest shall fit into
the category of the reason of state (Kałążna & Rosicki, 2013), which means that there is
aneed for the hierarchization of national interests. It shall allow narrowing and broadening
the analytical category of the reason of state to match the needs of research and scientific
inquiries. Because the categorization of the reason of state was to be the narrowing one, it
should be pointed out that these are vital interests of the state, that is, those that refer to its
substance: sovereignty, integrity, and society. Protection of those three shall always refer to
the notion of the reason of state.
As aresult of the above findings, the reason of state shall be defined as securitization
of vital interests of the state. Such an approach opens up several research options since
Piotr Lewandowski
securitization is aprocess, apolitical mechanism, i.e., an empirical, sequential and structured
feature. On the other hand, vital interests can be determined, defined, and described in
conceptual, quantitative, and qualitative terms. Such an approach to the understanding of
the reason of state allows for the determination of the “efforts made in order to minimize
threats [securitization] and maximize development opportunities of the state” (Łastawski,
eoretical Relations of the Raison d’État, Sovereignty and National
Interest in the Context of the eory of Political Realism
e disintegration of the bi-polar system caused disorientation of the international situation.
Paradoxically, the cold war period guaranteed relative stability. e disorientation of states,
especially those that had liberated their sovereign potential, anarchized the international
e lack of insight of Polish elites into the international structure resulted in the adop-
tion of the security paradigm based on the alliance with the most powerful pro-democratic
country in the world as it was recognized that “the strategic support on the part of another
political entity capable of successful action in the case of potential conflicts […]and special
relations either with the United States or the European Union are of fundamental importance
for Poland’s security”. (Furmański, 2007). e adopted prerequisite recognizes the US as the
global power it used to be at the end of the 20th century and the hopes pinned on the EU as
astrategic partner and building of common security. Polish thinker professed the myth of
the United States as amilitary power which outdistanced the rest of the world, as Roman
Kuźniar wrote: “in 2003, the US military budget will be equal to about 40% of global defense
spending and will exceed the military budget of 14 successive countries (including China
and Russia) taken together” (Kuźniar, 2003).
However, that situation did not last long. e end of the 20
and the beginning of the 21
century is aperiod that Jacek Bartosiak calls ageopolitical pause (Bartosiak, 2018). Although
this perspective is not specific enough and is repeatedly used in his work, it indicates that that
period was characterized by instability in the transformation of the international order from
the bi-polar one, through short-lived unipolarity, to forming the germs of multi-polarity. at
period was decisive for Poland’s having worked out its reason of state based on accession to
the NATO structures under the US leadership.
e problem to be pointed out concerns the direction and strength of Poland’s alli-
ance with the US. At the beginning of the 21st century, there were visible symptoms of the
decay of US power because of its hegemonic attitude toward the globe as awhole. Samuel
Huntington forewarned that as a“benevolent hegemon, the United States will become
an object of attacks for other civilizations’ forces or political/military blocs (Huntington,
1999). Despite some people’s skepticism, the US continued to promote itself as amilitary
power, which was particularly visible in the security strategy adopted at that time. Charles
Poland’s Reason of State in the Creation of a New International Order 5
Krauthammer affirmed, however, that the US was not only aglobal military, technological,
diplomatic, or cultural power, but that its influence was constantly on the rise (Krauthammer,
e United States undoubtedly reached the peak of its might at the beginning of the
century, right aer the pacification of Iraq. Added to this should be the earlier ideologi-
cal success connected with the defeat of communism, the triumph of liberal democracy
(Kissinger, 1994), as well as the pressures exerted on the countries of Central Europe, Africa,
Latin America, and Asia to become societies of “free access” and through the introduction
of the “Washington consensus” (Stańczyk, 2004) facilitated institutional penetration by
international organizations (Ferguson, 2017). Although the US scores much more successes
in international politics, its hegemonic failure caused the collapse of the post-cold war order
of the world (Brzeziński, 1999; Czornik, 2018).
e US is losing its primary role in the world in several important aspects. e wars in
Iraq and Afghanistan exhibited the maximum operational potential of the American army
(Okrasa, 2017). e United States faced the dilemma of positioning itself in the new struc-
ture, which had pushed regional powers up to the international rank (Miłoszewska, 2009). It
was particularly evident aer the financial crisis, which had undermined the standing of the
US, especially among Western economies. Further neo-imperial activities of Russia, which
as a(seemingly) dying power, disclosed the weakness of US diplomacy already during the
2nd war in Chechnya, and even more brutally on the example of Georgia and Ukraine.
ose events, especially the conflict in Ukraine, are ongoing, which means that in the
current decade, the world is in the process of forming the poles of empires. e world will
not become “normal” as Robert Kagan wants to see it (Kagan, 2009). Sooner, new trends
of international dependencies will become crystallized, preceded by periods of unrest and
uncertainty or, as John Gaddis said: periods of integration and fragmentation (Gaddis,
Within the perspective of forming anew system aer the end of the post-cold war
order, the Polish reason of state should be particularly sensitized to primary issues, such as
sovereignty. As note by Bolesław Balcerowicz, the authors of anew international order in
Europe are welfare states, which build and expand their networks of dependencies. at will
lead to the weakening of attributes of nation-states, especially sovereignty, and egoistically
formulated national interest, including the reason of state. It will also translate into the
crystallization of anew organizational structure of those states (Balcerowicz, 2005).
erefore, Poland’s reason of state should not focus on the protection of sovereignty. More
precisely, transformation into post-sovereignty is anatural and evolutionary phenomenon
(perhaps reversible, but it seems that it would require the making of autarchy, that is, utopia).
According to Balcerowicz, it should not focus even on the protection of national interests. It
is, however, an error resulting from over-confidence in the objectivity and independence of
international institutions (Kaczyńska, 2016). Poland’s reason of state at the time of shaping
anew international order should be afirm elaboration of non-partisan national interests in
Piotr Lewandowski
the form of protection of sovereignty (Giddens, 2009), or rather its gradual loss for the high-
est price possible, in exchange for the greatest benefits for the state rather than for its elites,
at the same time recognizing that the loss of sovereignty is an evolutionary phenomenon in
line with the contemporary dimension of international relations and security.
e United States gradually give way to the emerging powers, especially China. e
model of “defensive” imperialism they promulgate in the material, institutional or legal
dimension may prove insufficient on the international scale (Cooper, 2003). Moreover,
aconflict with Germany and acollision course vis-à-vis the entire EU may germinate many
threats concerning hard power control and the existent well-shaped American so power
in Europe. As aUS advocate in the old continent, awould-be intermediary between Russia,
the EU, and the US, Poland needs to find anew task to raise its rank and gain broader
international significance.
Added to this is also the process of reversal of political polarity in the US. Donald Trump’s
policies were visibly oriented toward Asia. Its military and economic attention are focused
on Chinese and Middle East activities (Strategiczny, 2019). It is an evident threat to Poland
since the attention of the US, “at present the most important political and military ally of
Poland, moves to Asia. It directly affects Poland’s security” (Sykulski, 2018).
Arealistic approach is needed for the determination of the Polish reason of state. e
decay of the hitherto international order, creating anew unipolar, networked, and globalized
one, as has been described, requires substantial political and intellectual involvement of
nation-states. It is nowadays, in the era of globalization, in the times when post-sovereignty
and extraterritoriality are prophesized, that the fundamental features of states are excep-
tionally needed. States continued to constitute afundamental component of international
political relations (Łoś-Nowak, 2013), and it seems not to change in the forthcoming future,
although non-state actors ever more intensively affect changes in this respect and determine
the ultimate quality of regional or bilateral relations of states (Gruszko, 2013). e reason
of state in contemporary relations should be its adjustment to new challenges. Since the
times of the Peace of Westphalia, states have been evolving, and this capability to introduce
changes and adapt oneself to diverse external conditions (organic vision of the state) seems
to suggest that it is sensitivity to certain variables and insensitivity to others will be decisive
for the longest possible existence of asovereign state.
In its substantial categories, the state should fulfill itself through earlier mentioned po-
litical realism. Seeking aplace for oneself in the international structure through tasks and
dependencies proves insufficient. e range of possibilities of contemporary medium-sized
states has been substantially limited by the primacy of organizations and institutionalization
of international order. at is why arealistic and cool-headed insight into the state of affairs
should not be rejected. It is necessary to continue the autonomous and necessary state policy
based on political realism with the doctrinal liberal democratic ideology (Kissinger, 2016).
In the classical thought of Hans Morgenthau, political realism assumes the need to treat
the states and behaviors in international order as typically societal activities characterized
Poland’s Reason of State in the Creation of a New International Order 7
by human deficiencies. However, most important for Poland is to utilize the geographical
principles. Morgenthau directly says that political realism in international relations is based
on geography, which determines the possible and probable foreign policy goals (Morgenthau,
2010). Two more dimensions are added to the geographical characteristics of the state:
transnational (Dumala, 2012) and cybernetic (Lakomy, 2015).
Acombination of political realism with critical geopolitics may materialize since it
defined the role of geography in the political theory of strategy, is atheory of spatial link-
ages” (Mondry, 2000). It is not, however, asufficient approach, since it is necessary to “take
into account the aspect of deterritorialization of the world and the fact that today alarge
part of the social and political activity takes place in the transnational area as well as in
cyberspace and is relatively detached from aspecific territorial location” (Potulski, 2010).
at is why the classical concepts of empires and powers need to be redefined.
Acontribution of the concept of political realism to geopolitical research and analysis
may be “the transfer of the notion of interest defined in the categories of power” (Morgenthau,
2010) to the area of political and international activities. Hence geopolitics, analytics, and
prognostics are of special importance in constructing realistic national interests defined by
the reason of state. erefore, the comments prescribe expansion of the intellectual base in
Poland, equipped with suitable analytical tools, which would be capable of building apolitical
scenarios and models of international developments. Its extent should not be geographically
restricted due to the globalization of international relations (one may speak about cybernetic
spatiality) (O’Tuathail, 1998) and the continuous growth of interrelations between states
from beyond civilizational and cultural regions.
Political realism is firmly based on geographical determinism. e context of globali-
zation of international relations, the deterritorialization of states, and the emergence of
cyberspace as asocio-political platform of network relationships requires adifferent than
classical look at astate’s reason of state from the viewpoint of political realism. Political
realism directly reveals that extreme inequality of state prevails in international reality
(O’Tuathail, 1998). Likewise, in the network international order, organizational and corporate
structures absorb or control other smaller regional branches. e same goes for cyberspace,
which appears as aprimacy of equality and freedom. In contrast, in reality, it upholds the
division between the center and the peripheries, where the “centers are sources generating
new values, attitudes, and behaviors, while the peripheries are usually recipients of models
and values coming from the centers” (Potulski, 2010).
Poland’s reason of state perceived from the viewpoint of the above and deriving from
political realism is to recognize its status of amedium-sized state, appreciate it, and “work
out apolitical order which will take it into account” (Morgenthau, 2010). at political order
involves astrategy of state security and astrategy of its internal development, as aresult
of which the resources and means can be distributed and transformed into international
profits. It is where the need to retain sovereignty in the strategic sectors of the state, such as
energy, critical infrastructure, or information and media security, proves to be necessary.
Piotr Lewandowski
Both concepts of sovereignty and raison d’état have been redefined under conditions
of globalization and the interdependence of states. e reason of state of medium-sized
states, developing states, understood in the categories of national interest, is in the interest
of states perceived as powers. States that orient their reason of state toward protecting
national interest behave in line with the expectations of imperial states, which in this
way – endangering vital interest – divert attention from what is fundamental, namely
sovereignty. Alongside expansion of state structures, the reason of state started to be
associated with the elementary rules of the functioning of the state” (Łastawski, 2016), and
the destruction of state structures marked the beginning of particularization of the reason
of state and its detachment from the need to protect sovereignty. Transnational economic
and political phenomena facilitate the eternal field of the rivalry of world powers, namely
elimination of nation-states and their replacement by “larger entities of adifferent nature,
which will better harmonize with technical and moral requirement of the contemporary
world” (Morgenthau, 2010).
As adeveloped state (Dołączyliśmy, 2019), having accepted its international position,
having counted its forces and means, Poland can realize itself in the categories of power
within the global system, gaining a“due international status” understood as a“set of bilateral
and multilateral relations with other states” (Kaczyński, 2011). It is arealistic approach to the
reason of state understood in the categories of interest (which in the medieval and modern
realities would be perceived rather as an homage) through the loss of Bodinian sovereignty
to preserve certain spatial and administrative prerogatives. However, the primacy of the
reason of state and interest over sovereignty makes states determined to reintegrate into
post-sovereignty perceived and reduced to the suitability of choice (Kaczmarski, 2015).
erefore, as long as the state is free to choose, independent, and sovereign, its sovereignty
is not threatened, contrary to the reason of state and national interest.
Polish Reason of State – Its State and Prospects
It is extremely difficult to define the Polish reason of state in the perspective of political
realism and geopolitics. e first basic difficulty is posed by analyzing the geopolitical
situation in the region and worldwide – and it should be the initial one. To acertain ex-
tent, this need is fulfilled by power-metric indicators, though they cannot be translated
into real activities of astate but only help realize the specific regional or global averages.
e underlying data are far from what has been expected and rather serve the purposes
of objectification. Another difficulty involves analyzing the international relationships of
acountry, its dependencies, and obligations vis-à-vis the international network of states,
organizations, and institutions.
It is worth looking at the Polish reason of state in this respect with aview to the crisis
in the Atlantic option caused by achange in the international arena, i.e., devaluation of
the US position in the world. Poland’s status in US politics has recently changed. So far,
Poland’s Reason of State in the Creation of a New International Order 9
Poland and the plan of building the missile defense shield were treated as an object of
American-Russian gameplay (Kiwerska, 2015). e United States itself has abandoned the
policy of post-Kissingerian ideology in favor of pragmatism toward changes in the structure
of international dependencies. e struggle against terrorism has consumed the forces and
means of the US, and the Russian neo-imperial policy in Europe suits it since it pushes the
European countries (as the US elites wish to see it) into astronger alliance with America as
acommon civilizational and cultural circle (Laruelle, 2012).
Apart from the hitherto comments relating to astrategic partnership, ever more fre-
quently, the issues of cooperation and mutual benefits in the contacts with Washington are
raised: Astrategic partnership with the United States is ahuge value. With aview of the
military and political witness of the European Union, Washingtons guarantees are the sole
possibility of ensuring security for such countries as Poland. However, this should not be
tantamount to waving the struggle for national interests. It is our tenacity, determination,
and courage that will decide to what extent we shall benefit from the American partnership
(Pacuła, 2008). e alliance with the US is not and should not be the sole solution as it
restricts the spectrum of Polish international efforts and at the same time deprives Poland
of the possibility to exert pressure on the American side, thus building an asymmetric web
of interdependencies. at is why it is necessary to have asober approach to this type of
assessment and realize own interests, especially in national security.
Poland’s reason of state is astrategic partnership with the US, but it should be made
clear that neither the alliance is permanent nor the reason of state is unchangeable. All this
is because Poland is treated as an object of international gameplay by its Western partners
(Grosse, 2016). Achange in the perception of Poland in the 21st century consists in aban-
doning the politics of the ideological struggle of the end of the 20th century in favor of the
pragmatic economic policy conducted by the US vis-à-vis all of its partners. Apartnership
with the US gives us “strategic political rather than economic benefits” (Pacuła, 2008). e
United States is acountry which is involved in financial draining through companies and
corporation which are of adefinitely national or even nationalistic character since the finan-
cial circles “draw aconsiderable part of their profits from imperialist exploitation exercised
over the rest of the world” (Bidet & Dumenil, 2011; Klein, 2017) as well as political protection
of the global empire. e very creation of the illusion of aworld power draws other states
into the alliance, in exchange for which the US demands cooperation (which in consequence
boils down to strong correlations of its capital with the capital of nation-states).
Polish reason of state in the last decade of the 20
century was determined by the
Atlantic option of national and international security. At present, to change this option
appears impossible or difficult, and it seems to be an eventuality in the case of astrong
crisis of NATO structures. However, there are all indications that this crisis already takes
place due to the dwindling role of the United States in the world. Polish reason of state at
the beginning of the 21
century should be at present the working out of different strategies
of national security, an alternative to the Atlantic option, since the existence of NATO in no
Piotr Lewandowski
event “does relieve the Polish state of the obligation to make efforts to maintain the armed
forces at the level sufficient to defend its territory” (Kaczyński, 2011).
e deepening of the crisis could be an alternative path of the development of Poland’s
national security. Such an option could trigger the domino effect among the developing
countries, especially from the region of Central and Eastern Europe, which would be against
the US interests, especially in the context of its rivalry with China. Nevertheless, security
strategies in the event of acrisis of Euro-Atlantic structures should be constantly on the table
and even slowly realized as an alternative and potential counterweight to dwindle American
domination in the world. at is why Poland’s reason of state should be to work out such
astatus in which, owing to its geopolitical location as atransit and bridging country, the
Polish state becomes ajunction (in the web structure) connecting the globalized system of
regional security with the Atlantic option.
In practice, this would mean areturn to the concept of national security, promoting the
emergence of aregional security structure with Poland as the leader. Such structures would
be characterized by political duality: they would constitute an alternative to the Euro-Atlantic
option and pressure the US as the NATO leader. is concept has, in away, passed the test
as NATO-bis (Jureńczyk, 2015). At present, it may be emphasized as aree Seas Initiative
understood as enhancing Poland’s activity in regional and international relations (Sienkiewicz,
2016). It is worth reminding that initially, that concept was based on the 16+1 format, where
China was to be astrategic partner and patron of the whole scheme: Ageneral goal of the
16+1 collaboration format is first of all consolidation of economic relations with China and
working out solutions that would contribute to the development of investment and growth of
trade among partners. (Bochenek, 2020). However, Poland changed its geopolitical orientation
again toward the Atlantic option, and asubsequent ree Seas summit was held under the
patronage of Donald Trump. e situation as awhole could be played much better, not resting
only on American promises and assurances but real assistance programmes.
e ree Seas Initiative and aproject of military security are, in away, correct as-
sumptions. e ree Seas Initiative should constitute Polish reason of state, non-partisan,
implemented systemically and by stages. e Initiative provides an opportunity for building
aplatform of regional security in the economic, energy, social, and cultural dimensions. It
is the first stage that offers the greatest opportunities for success that were first put forward
at the beginning of the 1990s – the ideas for constructing asecurity bloc in Central and
Eastern Europe (Karkoszka, 1994). Differences in political interests of Central and Eastern
European countries have been put aside in the new concept, and programmes in which
every state sees benefits rather than ill intentions are implemented. It may be the key to
paving aplane for reaching political (as in the case of the Visegrád Group) and then military
understanding by those states.
Polish reason of state should be characterized not only by pragmatism and political
realism but also pro-defense ideology. Securitization of individual sectors, beginning with
infrastructure, economy, ecology, energy to the community, and pro-defense policy, should
Poland’s Reason of State in the Creation of a New International Order 11
be supplemented with supranational efforts authenticating the legitimacy of action and
show evident benefits. Ideologizing international relations helps liberate what the Polish
state was involved in centuries ago: cultural so power. e geopolitical situation seems to
be exceptionally favorable for it (Siudak, 2020).
e ree Seas Initiative offers opportunities and threats (Ukielski, 2016), though from
the geostrategic point of view seems rather ambivalent. On the one hand, it constitutes
arejection of the ree Seas concept proposed by Jerzy Giedroyć as ULB (Ukraine, Lithuania,
Belarus). From the geopolitical point of view, this field should be considered lost in the
rivalry with Russian neo-imperialism. e war against Ukraine and plans to incorporate
Belarus are examples indicating that Russia slowly but determinedly and by stated returns
to geopolitics in the form of aterritorial empire. Poland may try to weaken Russian influ-
ences solely by offering examples and symbolic political actions, that is, act ideologically
and pragmatically at the same time.
e situation is different regarding the ree Seas Initiative, where the countries of
Central Europe are mostly out of touch with the former empire. New opportunities crop
up, for example, Poland’s acting as an umpire with regard to numerous conflicts between
states in this territory, operating its so power (culture, democracy, the rule of law, example
of economic development) and hard power (alliance with the US, own military force).
However, it is not the reason of state to incite conflicts and antagonize states to build alli-
ances and coalitions with the select few. e strength of the ree Seas Initiative will be the
minimization of conflicts and the attainment of unanimity in operating own autonomous
collaboration programmes.
In the networked and ever more polarized system of international relations, the Polish
reason of state is to produce such political, military, social, economic, energy, and military
linkages which will constitute aplatform of cooperation and regional security in Central
Europe. Poland’s location as atransit and bridging country, as Polish geo-politicians would
like to see it, is not asufficient determinant to achieve success in the form of getting astatus
of the peg. It is an error to assume that the “key to the development of the Polish center of
strength becomes not the building of own geopolitical bloc but rather geo-economic policy
oriented toward development of the country as an economic peg” (Sykulski, 2018). It is
supposedly going to happen in cooperation with China. However, close cooperation with
China under the New Silk Road initiative is but adream. It is stated in the report of the
Centre for Security Studies indicating that Poland does not take advantage of its position,
does not participate in atrade that crosses its territory (Iwanek, 2017). Apart from this, it
may be noted aer Jacek Bartosiak (2018) the “current level of the movement of goods by
railway may be handled by eight additional large ships annually. From this it follows that
in order to be ageopolitical factor, traffic along the New Silk Road must be greater, more
frequent, faster”. Besides, Poland’s economic structure nowadays reminds the structure of
aneo-colonial country (Romaniszyn, 2016), making building sovereignty even more difficult
and explains why Poland is treated as atransit country.
Piotr Lewandowski
Another alternative could be to build astrategy based on the concept of perpetual
neutrality. However, given its proximity to Russia, Poland cannot achieve the military
capability to ensure asufficient level of defense and deterrence on its own, which does not
change the fact that Poland, as a‘frontline’ state, should have an adequately numerous and
well-equipped army, which must, however, be integrated into Euro-Atlantic structures in
the best possible way.
It is impossible to achieve neutrality because of geography and geopolitics. Under the
present condition, it would mean that Poland would have to get guarantees from European
powers: Germany, France, Russian, and Britain, as well as the United States. However, such
acombination seems abstract. Bolesław Balcerowicz notes that neutrality of medium-sized
states such as Poland requires international guarantees of powers and asecond mandatory
condition: the strategy of determwelfent (Kopeć & Mazur, 2017), which entails having
such force which would discourage potential aggressors (Balcerowicz, 2010). It seems,
however, that meeting that second condition only, possession of nuclear weapons (Waltz,
1990), could prove exceptionally positive for Poland: the United States would be forced to
consolidate its role in the strategic partnership, while Poland would be perceived among
the countries of Central and Eastern Europe as sufficiently credible to build around itself
an axis of regional security.
Conclusions and Recommendations
e notion of the reason of state proposed in this study in the form of securitization of
vital interests of the state allows for supplementing the definitional operant with aset of
measurable characteristics, features, and verifiable facts that may be investigated under the
conditions of both national and international security. In case of the reason of state in the
situation of globalization and contemporary changes, most important seems to be the loss
of confidence in the US as the hegemon of the international order. It entails an immedi-
ate threat to security and requires modification of the reason of state into astate security
operant (securitization) through maintaining military security and thus sovereignty.
At the same time, there exist real needs to work out alternatives for international de-
velopment and recognize the US as one of the poles of international order. Such asituation
requires deliberate getting rid of the prerogatives of sovereignty in favor of state security in
the international environment. It should be accepted that Poland, if aperipheral country in
international geopolitics and opportunities, should be verified from this perspective with
the simultaneous and continued striving at increasing the might of the state in the region.
It seems that the ree Seas or B9 format offers real opportunities for turning Poland into
aregional leader, though they require forces and means which the Polish state does not
have (Lewandowski, 2019). e change of status and attainment of structural might (e.g.,
concerning military security) could raise the level of confidence of the countries of the
region toward Poland.
Poland’s Reason of State in the Creation of a New International Order 13
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Autor omawia geopolityczne idee wielkoprzestrzenne jako wyobrażenia zbiorowe odnoszące się do kultury geopolitycznej narodu. Idee te zazwyczaj są prezentowane jako idee podboju, idee odnoszące się do zmiany granic państwa. Sytuacja zmieniła się wraz z globalizacją i sieciowością relacji międzynarodowych. W artykule zostały zaprezentowane idee wielkoprzestrzenne Rzeczypospolitej czasów nowożytnych jako soft power oraz możliwości wykorzystania jego ewentualnej rewitalizacji we współczesnych stosunkach międzynarodowych.
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Since the 1980s, there has been a debate about the evolution of the notion of security and its dimensions. The Copenhagen School, and its key concepts such as securitization, and security sectors, closely keep up with this security discourse and criticize traditional paradigms that could not predict the collapse of the USSR and the end of the Cold War. Therefore, the subject of this paper is to present the importance of main assumptions of critical security studies using the example of the Copenhagen School and the intersubjective approach to security in its multidimensional aspect.
Rewolucja informatyczna, która rozpoczęła się na dobre w drugiej połowie XX wieku, w ciągu zaledwie kilku dekad w zasadniczym stopniu zmieniła oblicze świata w niemal wszystkich możliwych wymiarach i płaszczyznach. Zgodnie z przewidywaniami części deterministów technologicznych, procesy komputeryzacji i informatyzacji objęły szybko kolejne dziedziny życia jednostek i ich zbiorowości, począwszy od gospodarki, przez naukę, rozrywkę, aż po politykę i wojskowość. Ze względu na jej najbardziej doniosłe cechy, polegające na przezwyciężeniu dotychczasowych ograniczeń związanych z przetwarzaniem, przesyłaniem i przechowywaniem informacji, przyniosła ona ludzkości ogromne korzyści. Ich symbolem stało się powstanie nowej, unikalnej w swojej istocie domeny jaką jest cyberprzestrzeń. Jej specyficzne cechy sprawiają, że od dekad w coraz większym stopniu determinuje ona funkcjonowanie państw i społeczeństw, przenikając administrację państwową, infrastrukturę krytyczną, sektor biznesowy czy wreszcie siły zbrojne. Ich rosnące uzależnienie od ICT stało się jednak zarazem powodem pojawiania się pewnych negatywnych tendencji, których koszty ponoszone są na całym świecie. Powszechność i globalny charakter technologii teleinformatycznych doprowadziły bowiem do epokowych zmian w szeroko pojętym środowisku bezpieczeństwa. Komputery i ich sieci przyczyniając się do rewolucji w sprawach wojskowych (RMA) stały się równolegle źródłem i platformą szkodliwych zjawisk, które z czasem zaczęły być postrzegane przez pryzmat zagrożeń dla bezpieczeństwa narodowego i międzynarodowego. Rozmaite podmioty, począwszy od zwykłych amatorów, hakerów, przez haktywistów, cyberterrorystów aż po organizacje przestępcze, dzięki cyberprzestrzeni zyskały potencjalną możliwość dotarcia nawet do najbardziej żywotnych elementów systemów bezpieczeństwa państw. Innymi słowy, paradoksalnie stała się ona kolejnym wymiarem bezpieczeństwa, którego rola rośnie proporcjonalnie do postępów procesów komputeryzacji i informatyzacji. Jeszcze w latach 90. XX wieku nawet najpoważniejsze ataki komputerowe były z reguły uznawane za, co najwyżej, pewną niedogodność dla administracji centralnej. Tymczasem już dwie dekady później, ich skala stała się na tyle duża, iż zaczęto upatrywać w nich jednego z najpoważniejszych wyzwań dla stabilności całego systemu międzynarodowego. W tym nowym środowisku jakim jest cyberprzestrzeń, unikalnym podmiotem pozostają państwa, które jeszcze do niedawna nie wykazywały zwiększonego zainteresowania rozwijaniem własnych zdolności do działania w tej sferze. Zaczęło się to zmieniać mniej więcej na przełomie XX i XXI wieku, kiedy wynikające z tego, potencjalne korzyści dostrzegły elity polityczne zaledwie kilku krajów, takich jak Stany Zjednoczone, Rosja, Chiny czy Izrael. Z jednej strony, zainicjowano prace nad rozbudową potencjału eksperckiego i technologicznego, który pozwalał efektywniej bronić się przed włamaniami do sieci komputerowych. Z drugiej, zrozumiano, że ofensywna aktywność w przestrzeni teleinformatycznej może stać się dogodnym orężem rywalizacji i konfrontacji z innymi podmiotami w środowisku międzynarodowym. Sprzyjały temu obiektywne właściwości tej domeny, takie jak łatwa do osiągnięcia anonimowość, "ageograficzność" i "aterytorialność", czy niskie koszty „wejścia”. Ponadto, na przydatność tych instrumentów wskazywały niejasności związane z interpretacją obowiązujących zapisów prawa międzynarodowego oraz mechanizmów współpracy politycznej i wojskowej. Prekursorzy ci w ciągu zaledwie kilku lat wykształcili więc zaawansowane zdolności w tym zakresie, które mogły w teorii posłużyć do realizacji określonych celów na wybranych kierunkach. W tym kontekście, prezentowana praca stanowi próbę omówienia skuteczności środków teleinformatycznych jako instrumentów polityki zagranicznej państw w okresie pozimnowojennym. W przeprowadzonej analizie, biorącej pod uwagę zarówno aspekty rywalizacji, jak i współpracy rządów w cyberprzestrzeni, wykorzystano elementy teorii polityki zagranicznej. W rozprawie omówiono przede wszystkim istotę i etapy rewolucji cyfrowej, która doprowadziła do wykształcenia się przestrzeni teleinformatycznej. Następnie scharakteryzowano jej najważniejsze cechy, zarówno w ujęciu technicznym, jak i politologicznym. Na tej podstawie, podjęto próbę stworzenia uproszczonej typologii zagrożeń teleinformatycznych dla bezpieczeństwa państw, obejmującej takie zjawiska jak haking, haktywizm czy cyberterroryzm. Wreszcie, dokonano analizy najbardziej doniosłych przykładów rywalizacji i współpracy państw w cyberprzestrzeni. Z jednej strony, omówiono wydarzenia w Estonii w kwietniu i maju 2007 roku, w Gruzji w sierpniu 2008 r. czy w Iranie od 2010 roku (Stuxnet). Z drugiej strony, scharakteryzowano także przejawy kooperacji państw w tej dziedzinie, na przykładzie Organizacji Narodów Zjednoczonych, Unii Europejskiej, NATO czy Unii Afrykańskiej.
Two pervasive beliefs have given nuclear weapons a bad name: that nuclear deterrence is highly problematic, and that a breakdown in deterrence would mean Armageddon. Both beliefs are misguided and suggest that nearly half a century after Hiroshima, scholars and policy makers have yet to grasp the full strategic implications of nuclear weaponry. I contrast the logic of conventional and nuclear weaponry to show how nuclear weapons are in fact a tremendous force for peace and afford nations that possess them the possibility of security at reasonable cost. © 1990, American Political Science Association. All rights reserved.
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