Vol. 4 No. 2 (2016): CISS Insight Quarterly Journal, June 2016
Book Reviews

The Improbable War: China, the United States and Logic of Great Power Conflict Written

Ms. Huma Rehman
Senior Research Officer at the Center for International Strategic Studies (CISS)
Bio
Published June 27, 2016
How to Cite
Ms. Huma Rehman. (2016). The Improbable War: China, the United States and Logic of Great Power Conflict Written. CISS Insight Journal, 4(2), P 48-50. Retrieved from https://journal.ciss.org.pk/index.php/ciss-insight/article/view/82

Abstract

The book “The Improbable War: China, the United States and Logic of Great Power Conflict,” published in2015, is written by Christopher Cokerwho is a professor of international relations at London School of Economics. His earlier works include;Can War Be Eliminated?, Future of War,Waging War without Warriors;and The Changing Culture of Military Conflict. Divided into five chapters, The Improbable War explores the logic of conflict (potential or actual) between great powers. In order to find an answer to this perplexing question Coker analyses the existing international power structure, prevalent world views of nations, and analyses the political causes that had led to military conflicts in the past. His focus however remains on the First World War while discussing what he calls “logic of history in regard to military conflicts between dominant powers”.

The author analyses the views of influential intellectuals, who shaped peoples’ world view in the period preceding First World War. The prevalent view at the time was that commercial interests of the major powers will trump any desire of the military or political elites to go to war. The author also discusses naval and military buildup of Germany as a possible cause of the great war but shows with historic evidence that none of the major powers had wanted to go to war but some were “ready enough to seize the moment”.