Hegemony: The Liberal International Political Economy
Induced by the United States, the leading states have since 1945 created a relatively coherent order in the world that serves primarily their interests. At the same time, the arrangements provide incentives for other states to join them. In cases in which countries such as Iran, Iraq, and others resist the dominant order, coercive devices are readily available for suppressing and/or discouraging them. Because different countries, whether acquiescent in or defiant of the hegemonic order, pursue separate and often distinctive interests based upon their unequal capabilities, the order tends to be applied rather loosely to those whose power enables them to follow exceptional behavior. The least-constrained country is the predominant one, the United States.