Realist Geoffrey Stern recognizes reasonable, fashionable arguments that the state's primacy as sole actor in world affairs has eroded, but finds them fatally flawed. In an interesting defense of realism, he argues that "since the exact legal status of nonstate actors is mired in controversy, . . . they cannot be said to have destroyed its legal primacy. 1
In response to globalist doubts about the continued relevance of the sovereign state in a tightening "high-tech" tangle of transnational forces, common markets, global ideologies, and international organizations, Stern delicately suggests that although the very concept of sovereignty may never have been much more than a legal fiction anyway,
[i]n political terms . . . even if nonstate actors are increasingly making their presence felt, in many parts of the world the role of the state may be said to have been growing in parallel. . . .
Second, whereas before the twentieth-century governments tended to leave such matters as international trade and commerce, migration, sport, and ideological or religious orientation to the individual, these have now tended to become increasingly subject to government regulation. 2
Nor have the political allures of sovereign statehood and ever-increasing government power lost their appeal. In addition to continuing nationalistic concerns in mature states about "competitiveness" and "national interests," the strident demands of Palestinians, Kurds, Kashmiris, Chechens, Karens, Bosnians, Croats, Tibetans, Quebecois, Basques, Scots, and a host of other emerging nations, suggest that neither the sovereign state nor realist politics have become obsolete. A plethora of unsatisfied peoples insisting on self- determination and a sovereign homeland--even though the entire territory of the earth has already come within the jurisdiction of some existing sovereign state--seems not only to promise continuing conflict in a realist world, but to