What are the ‘hard’ and ‘soft’ power and how they can be used?
It can be seen that both ‘hard’ and ‘soft’ power can be, and have been, used to achieve the state’s objectives. As mentioned prior to the use of strong military and economic forces have been used by many states to have their influence over other states to acquire their goals. ‘Soft’ power can also be used as a process to achieve the objective wanted by the state. It is often debated, within International Relations, on which type of power is the best to use to receive this desired outcome. This becomes an issue as both types have positives and negative aspects around them. For example, ‘hard’ power, when used, often achieves its goal due to its strong nature that often has large impacts. This, ultimately, means it is an option that could be used by states. However, these methods are often expensive meaning that only larger; wealthier states can use this method. Another flaw in using ‘hard’ power is that it degrades the character of these states to be seen as using aggression to achieve their goals. Thus showing how ‘hard’ power can cause more issues when being used. However, some argue that the use of ‘hard power’ can be necessary under some circumstance. For example, Lisbeth Aggestam suggests that the use of this particular type of power execution “may indeed play a crucial part in the early efforts of reconstruction and post-conflict rehabilitation.”
Which shows that this type of power can be used with good intentions and have a positive outcome. Meaning that this type of power can be successful to achieve specific goals if used correctly with the correct intent. On the other end of the spectrum, ‘soft’ power offers another method of achieving objectives also. ‘Soft’ power offers a non-aggressive method in which to exert power to acquire the state’s or individual’s specific target. It is expressed that “Soft power arises from the attractiveness of a country’s culture, political ideals, and policies.” which shows how soft power is a peaceful method in which can create more power that can ultimately be used to benefit the state.