Evaluation Of The Effectiveness Of Trade Embargoes

1406 words - 6 pages

Intro Sample...


Although I am a strong critic of the use and effectiveness of economic sanctions, such as trade embargoes, for the sake of this assignment, I will present both their theoretical advantages and their disadvantages based upon my research. Trade embargoes and blockades have traditionally been used to entice nations to alter their behavior or to punish them for certain behavior. The intentions behind these policies are generally noble, at least on the surface. However, these policies can have side effects. For example, FDR's blockade of raw materials against the Japanese in Manchuria in the 1930s arguably led to the bombing of Pearl Harbor, which resulted in U.S. involvement in World War II. The decades-long embargo against Cuba not only... View More »

Body Sample...


Trade embargoes often do not succeed in changing the behavior of other countries, depending on various factors. In contrast to most foreign and defense actions financed by the government treasury, the embargo?s costs are mostly felt by businesses whose trade is affected. They can amount to a discriminatory, sector-specific tax to finance foreign policy. Complaints of losses to domestic firms may undermine an embargo?s initiative when it interrupts trade and financial contacts; businesses may fear loss of their reputation for reliability. Trade embargoes may alienate the sender?s foreign allies.
Popular regimes are more vulnerable than authoritarian regimes to domestic pressure for the state to change its behavior. Governments with high degrees of control over information can manipulate the public to blame foreign countries for unjustifiably inflicting damages against them. Embargoes can impose a high cost on noncombatants in the target country.
In addition to trade embargoes, diplomatic sanctions such as breaking bilateral ties or denying a target country organizational membership, deny sender states and organizations some of their direct leverage against the target regime.
Sender governments may fail to honor their commitments to enforce embargoes, gaining political advantage from cooperating in international efforts while reaping economic benefits by looking the other way as their companies evade the embargoes and illicitly take over the market share of other sanctioning countries.
Trade embargoes are blunt tools with limited ability to focus economic pressure ...

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