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The Use of International Alignment in a Long-Range Forecasting Model

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International alignment is defined as the degree to which two nations share similar attitudes or patterns of behavior with respect to some mutually salient third nation or group of nations. In the European context, the United States and the Soviet Union are the most plausible salient nations. The nations of Europe will be considered aligned to the extent that they behave similarly toward the two major powers. In addition, a modified bipolar schema will be used to determine the extent to which the European nations are aligned with the United States or with the Soviet Union. Forecasts of nations alignments with these two powers will suggest the degree to which the present divisions of the European continent are expected to continue in the future. These forecasts will be used to infer the potential for European nations to act, in unison, as a third major power. Predictors of alignment patterns include the degree of internal turmoil and revolution, nations economic and military power bases, their total international conflict, and their comparative levels of conflict with the United States and the Soviet Union. In addition, expected patterns of trade with these two major powers will serve as a predictor of European nations alignment patterns. Predictors of alignment patterns include comparative distances from the United States and the Soviet Union and nations polity types.

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  • Government and Political Science

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