Economic Content essay

The essay focuses on the link between the economy and national security. One argument is that the economy functions to support a nation’s military force to enable it to secure the nation from external threat, while the latter functions to protect the nation’s economic interests. This relationship is viewed as the traditional one, and revolves around the need to protect economic activities within one’s territorial borders. The other argument is that security functions to protect not only one’s physical, territorial assets, but other, “essential values” as well.

These “values” include economic interests abroad, such as products of multinational corporations, and international trading rules that govern the flow of such goods across the globe. Such was the doctrine that the West had embraced in the 1960s until much of the 1980s, with its political debacles in Vietnam and Afghanistan. Proceeding from the belief that foreign intervention was called for in the name of securing its interests abroad, the United States set out a bungling and unfortunate adventure under the flawed pretext of national security.

Learning then from their misadventures, powerful governments today resort to more subtle forms of aggression, euphemistically referred to as the pursuit of foreign policy in the Pacific Century. Superpowers more often than not endeavor to protect and secure their vital interests abroad, not only through military means but also through cultural assimilation and media interventions. The length and breadth of foreign control over weaker economies has become apparent and even brazen, manifested through changing lifestyles and cultural norms favorable to the influx of foreign goods.

Today, multinational cultures are embedded in various small countries, implanted and secured by larger economies and corporate interests. The drive to be omnipresent and strong across developing communities has become the norm in international relations that to do otherwise would run against the grain of First World governance.


Luciani, Giacomo. The Economic Content of Security. Journal of Public Policy, Vol. 8, No. 2. Apr. – Jun. , 1988: pp. 151-173. Cambridge University Press. 05 May 2009 <http://www. jstor. org/stable/4007203 Accessed: 04:46>