Sovereignty in Transition
This chapter distinguishes between sovereignty and other forms of authority. It examines conditions in which governments interpret events as challenges to the state's sovereignty, going beyond mere criticism or opposition to the regime in power. The chapter classifies the global and local sources of such challenges, as well as the categories of response that constitute the primary topic. It considers some of the moral issues that lie behind the balance of this challenge-and-response metaphor and suggest how this changing equilibrium characterizes sovereignty as it emerges out of action. The chapter explores the challenges to sovereignty and the responses to it, showing how they have elicited changes in the reality of sovereignty in Asia. The challenges are: political, economic, social, intellectual, or standards-based. The historical justification of sovereignty as a moral claim rests on the need for a stable world order that supports coexistence among independent states. This chapter also presents an overview of the key concepts discussed in this book.