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Intro Ir Reasoning

In: Social Issues

Submitted By Dub23
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Pages 23
Essay Questions

1. How do the different actors in international system affect international relations? How do the different theories explain the role of these actors in the international system.

The actors consist of state actors and non-state actors. Non-state actors and terrorism work outside the westphalian system and take power away from state sovereignty. They consist of terrorist groups, IGO’s like the European Union, NGO’s like multinational corporations. NGO’s increase interdependence and globalization. IGO’s bring about peace and spread democracy and war is not realistic. NGO’s even have the ability to remove state governments through public support and pressure placed on high ranking officials as shown in -----. They also have the power to hinder development of countries as shown in the Global South, but at the same time they provide many jobs for the economy. For state actors, the actions and decisions of states can effect profoundly the international because of polarity, hegemony, and economy. The Liberalist view would see non-state actors as a positive because they are bringing countries allowing them to work together through institutions increasing interdependence and globalization. Realists would say that these non-state actors are only out for self interest in profit and will use up resources taking advantage of wages whenever possible. Constructivist view would see terrorist groups specifically as falling under Samuel Huntington’s Clash of Civilizations because it is a conflict of ideas. Realist view of state actors is they act in self interest anything to benefit them. Liberalist view is they want to cooperate with each other in order to work together to improve relations and trade.

2. As an incoming President-Elect of the United States of America, what would your major concerns be in the South Asian subcontinent? Discuss US-Pakistan, US-Afghanistan, and US-India relationships, and the relationships that the countries of the region have with each other, in the context of America’s role/objectives in the region.

Major concerns of the US 7 of 10 most populace countries of the world are there, not much democracy, there are rising nationalism there, threat of US hegemony being taken away, and threaten of competing markets with growing economic growth there. Currently the US is in war in Iraq and trying to drive out Al Queda, then Al Queda moved into hills of Pakistan and they are nuclear power so there is a fear that AL Queda will acquire weapons. AL Queda is using Pakistan as a base to stage attacks into Afghanistan. Pakistan was pro US during Cold War and seen as an ally of US. They even today provide money to US and say that they are ally even today but US believe they still are funding and equipping Taliban. Pakistan is an ideal country for the Taliban which worries the US more because it is corrupt, bankrupt, nuclear, and unstable. Problem with Afghanistan is that it is still controlled by Taliban. The border line between Afghanistan and Pakistan is very questionable and uncontrollable and more and more Taliban keeps moving back into Afghanistan everyday. The US is trying to set up democracy there but it is torn between ethnic groups of Shiites, kurds, and sunnis. India is fighting with Pakistan because Pakistan is pretty two different countries and wants to unite and India refuses to give up territory. Obama says that his number one priority is getting out of Iraq and focusing on Afghanistan and Pakistan because this is where the major problems with terrorism are. American wants peace and stability with democratic elections for officials. They are also very concerned with the many oil reserves in the area because oil is a priority on the US list of things to do.

3. Has the rise of non-state actors threatened the Westphalian system of international relations. Explain why or why not. Support your argument with relevant examples.

Yes, non-state actors threatened the Westphalian system greatly. The Westphalian system focuses on state as the highest level of sovereignty with complete control over their respective territories. Non-state actors act completely independent of states and states do not have any control over these actors. They essentially take power away from the state and put them in the hands of the people. There have even been instances where non-state actors such as multinational corporations have removed state regimes through public support and heavy pressure placed on high ranking officials. Shell overthrew the Nigerian government is a great example of this. ITT also overthrew the Chile government. These show how sovereignty is now taken away from state actors and undermines the westphalian system.

4. Describe the Israel-Palestine dispute. Assess how the situation is viewed by both parties. Why is the dispute relevant to other countries… both in the neighbouring region and other countries?

Israel and Palestine are fighting over territory that Israel was given by Britain after WWII. British believed the Jews needed a place to go; needed to return to the promise land outside Europe so they took land from Palestine and created Israel. All of Europe agrees because they felt bad for what happened to the Jew in WWII and Palestine is left out of decision. Jews of Israel surrounded by Arabs of Palestine begin fighting over territory. Series of wars in 1948, 1956, 1967, and 1973 where attempted settlements were talked about but one side or the other refused the deal because they wanted more. During these wars Israel expanded territory then gave up territory, hundreds of people killed, attacked on holy days, and have invasions. All eventually stop with UN resolutions and attempt to settle. Carter tried to settle dispute once and for all with Camp David Accords which had little success. Disputes continue today in this volatile region over lands and territories. Internationally its tough because Palestine is a humanitarian issue and Israel was created by international agreement. This conflict involves arabs that have current bad relations with western states and there is a lot of media coverage of the area to exploit any and everything that happens. Other countries want a settlement to end the volatile fighting and constant instability of the region along with possible democratic elections for the future. Neighboring countries do not want to deal with the fighting and destruction at their borders. Palestine wants control of all their previous territory where Israel wants a two state settlement. Palestine wants back Jerusalem, the West Bank, and the Gaza strip and compensation for damages done, also want all of their refugees returned to state after were kicked out in creation of Israel so that they have access to food and water that is being blockaded. Israel wants to keep Jerusalem, some of the West Bank and does not want to pay nearly any compensation because they believe it is not their fault. These were what the countries wanted in OSLO accords set up by Bill Clinton but couldn’t agree. US really supports because they are the real democracy in middle east and we want to up hold this and hope that it will spread to other neighboring countries. Palestine further supports conflict against Israel because of their support from western state.

5. Discuss the future prospects for US hegemony in the context of the main IR theories and especially in light of current shifts in the power balances around the world.

There are two major challenges to US hegemony in the future which are the European Union and China. Both have enormous economies that are gaining continuous support and have constant annual growth rates. China strong economic growth and the US is strongly in debt which China has begun to help with which intertwines the two economies further. China holds 6% of US GDP, but Chinese economy depend on the US markets. Olympics show desire to be a part of international system and for the rest of the world to take them a note as being a major player. China has a very different political system so its tough for the US to understand and relate to China. China challenges US with domination of Asia and taking control of Africa as they pump money into rebuilding project. China held back from being new hegemon because major powers in that area disagree with many things they stand for. Examples are India, Japan, and Russia. China doesn’t have soft power, resources, or alliances to gain that hegemon position because that money that they have is 10% corrupt and they support regimes in areas in order to get cheap oil so those countries can buy weapons and they ignore human rights. Regardless on the Economic level they are challenging the US are predicted to surpass the US in 2012. The European Union has one currency and one government bringing together 27 countries which tie resources, markets, and economies all together creating a huge competitor for the United States. This is all due to the states in the EU give up their own sovereignty to let the EU have power. This has never been seen before and the borders of where the EU will grow to are unknown because they are admitting new states all the time. The realist theory see these two emerging powers pushing the growth of their economies so that they may be able to keep the US in check in the future. They are trying to create a balance of power within the international system. Liberal theories would say that these growing economies are good for IR because they allow states to cooperate, enhance free trade, have democratic peace, and increase interaction and allow countries to work through institutions.

6. Analyze the relative significance of each of the three main components of liberal peace theory. Why is this theory potentially so significant in international relations? What would be the realist response to this approach?

The three main components of liberal peace theory are democracy, economic interdependencc, and IGO’s. These all are tired together influencing one another. Democracy is important and peaceful because leader must act as the people want, there is no total control of any one person, system of checks and balances, less war because democracies don’t go to war with each other because they depend on each other for resources and trade as shown by Bruce Russert. Interdependence is important because countries trade and invest with each other and have economies that are tied together. IGO’s governments can mediate problems through these a diplomatic way that promotes peace and does not leave people to war so their invests and trade are protected. Similar values of democracies allow countries to work through IGO’s and trade with each other because they have and need the same things. Realist response to this would be that countries work with each other only to benefit themselves and make sure that trade and investments are kept safe to keep their own economies stable and this relates to interdependence because they cannot trade with countries at war.

7. Military intervention for humanitarian aims has increased in recent decades. Discuss the theoretical debate over whether humanitarian intervention is morally justified. Under what conditions are states likely to actually deploy humanitarian intervention? Include two examples in your answer.

Realist believe that might makes right and if its in the states interest to intervene then it should. There are two types of liberalists which are liberal communitarian where state sovereignty has the rights and then liberal cosmopolitan where states have the moral obligation to uphold human rights. The main debate on which theory is right is brought back to legality and legitimacy. States can legally intervene when a treaty is broken, international law has been broken, or a UN charter has been given. However, states can have moral or political rights to intervene in a conflict but this relies heavily on international opinion. States can be legally right and not legitimetly right, legitimetly right and not legally right, or they can be both legitimate and legal. This is where things get hazy in the international system. There is a lot of ambiguity in intervention. The international community cannot decide when a third party should intervene and how they should intervene in a crisis. Legitimacy is the most valid in humanitarian intervention because there is no over arching authority to constitute legality. There was a genocide in Rwanda which is illegal and wrong and states had legitimacy and legality with intervention but no one intervened and they should have been hundreds of thousands died. In Somalia millions were in famine and states had legitimate rights to intervene but no legal rights to intervene yet they did anyways because of their moral stance. This intervention failed because war lords fought and killed American troops (Blackhawk down) and forces were pulled out of the area.

8. What, in your view, are the principal strengths and weaknesses of Samuel Huntington’s thesis on The Clash of Civilizations? Justify your position with some evidence from a few case studies.

The next conflicts will be civilization conflicts because of people finding a higher form of identity and then conflict along fault lines of those civilizations due to different cultures, ideas, customs, and values increasingly interacting with each other. Liberals would believe that with more contact would come more understanding and connections that would bring people closer together instead of closer to conflict. Realist would believe that with increased interaction would come conflict because people would want to gain control over those that they are interacting with which shows that Huntington theory is a realist theory. Conflict is due to clash of civilizations because that culture is static/unchanging and political and economic factors are variable/changing.
Support- 1. September 11, factions of Islam declares war against the west 2. War between India and Pakistan stemming from different culture and beliefs 3. China and India conflict because of different beliefs and values, democratic belief versus communist views.
Criticisms- 1. more conflicts are within states border (civil wars) then there are interstate wars 2. People can change citizenship showing that people may not conform to a higher identity and want to conform to a different identity. 3. There are sharp differences between specific groups within a given civilization like the Shiites and Sunnis 4. Countries he associates with certain civilizations are spread across the world from different places, people

9. What effects will the rise of China have on America’s world role and on Sino-US relations? What would a realist and what would a liberal say? And what possible policy recommendations might either proffer?

China is a threat to US hegemony. China is putting rebuilding money into asian and african third world countries and fights for resources which is challenging the US. The Chinese economy has had a constant GDP growth rate of 9.8% that is continuing every year to challenge the US and possibly over take it by 2012. This is giving China more power and dominance in world politics and international relations than the US. Realist would see as a zero sum game where China gains power and US loses it. The Liberalist would see a bipolar world as both countries remain powerful and can even increase trade creating higher interdependence and benefiting both economies. The US may adapt protectionist attitudes to try to hold on to power position in the world.

10. One influential vision for a `grand strategy' for U.S. foreign policy in the 21st century is to promote democracy in the world as a way of promoting a more pacific international system. Make an argument, drawing on what we have learned, about whether and why this may or may not be a sensible idea.

This is democratic peace theory. It is the idea that a state enforces a democracy on a non-democratic state through military or non military means. It states that democracies are unlikely to go to war with each other. They have similar values, economic interdependence, and work through the same institutions. It could be a bad idea because countries like the US can’t impose democracy on others. Democracy may not be good for all countries and placing a democracy on a country could lead to further destruction of a country. Cultural ideas and customs may conflict with the idea of democracy. Democracies and non-democracies have a 200% higher likeliness of going to war with each other than democracies do with each other which means that democracy promotion does not end conflict in the world. Kants perpetual peace relates to this and arguments say that peace could be created by IGO’s or interdependence instead of the democracy form of government.

11. What are the major determinants of power in the international system? Which do you feel are most important?

They are military might, economic might, type of government, and intangibles (soft power, ability to move army, intelligence, administrative efficiency, economic choice, willingness to take casualties).

12. How has the rise of terrorism changed the rules of the international system. Use an example to support your argument

Terrorism is a strategy not a form of war that is made of bombings, assassinations, hijackings, kidnappings. It is not warfare because civilians are targeted along with enemy combatants. Terrorism takes away state sovereignty and challenges the westphalian system because they act in their own self interest and have no rules or guidelines to follow in the international system. An example would be 9/11 because the US is fighting a non-state actor which has never happened before.

13. Does the recent resurgence of Russia signal the end of what has been a unipolar world? Frame your argument in the context of the 2008 Georgia-Russia conflict and the lead-up to it, as well as Russian-American relationship in the post Cold War context.

Russia has been attempting to establish itself as a world dominating power and try to get some sort of balance of power with the United States. Its GDP has jumped 162% driven by oil and gas. Russia controls all pipelines except one and puts strangle hold on energy of all countries in the areas because the are threatening to cut off all energy to different countries. Russia also beings to challenge US on military front saying they will respond to US missile defense by putting missiles in Europe. Russia invaded Georgia and Georgia is a US ally, but they didn’t care showing Russian challenge. Russia did this possibly to block Georgia from getting into the NATO. Russia invaded Georgia in the first place because there are distinct ethnic groups across the borders of the two countries. Ossetia is backed by Russia to dissent in Georgia. Georgia begins fighting Ossetia and then invade their territory because they said they were acting preemptively because Russia was going to invade them no matter what.

14. What are some of the arguments for and against nuclear proliferation? Why is the question of nuclear proliferation pertinent in the case of Iran’s relationship with the rest of the world.

Arguments for nuclear proliferation would be that it creates a balance of power in the international system. If everyone has nuclear weapons then it would deter any country from having a military advantage over another. This in turn would stop wars because every country would fear the others use of nuclear weapons against them. Arguments against nuclear proliferation would be that there is to easy a chance that a country could have a leader that would want to use weapons or worse with so many weapons floating around they could fall into the hands of terrorist groups. Tyranical leaders could also sell their nuclear weapons to terrorists to make a lot of money or keep power in their territory without problems of terrorism. Iran had nuclear capabilities but says they have no interest in making it weapons grade and only for energy purposes. The IAEA was allowed to investigate and came with no conclusions that weapons grade weapons were being created. This call Iran’s right to have nuclear weapons and what they would due with that technology. The fear of the United States would be that they would fall into the hands of terrorists that are pertinent in the area. This also relates to the non-nuclear proliferation act saying that nuclear technology can not be spread to other countries that don’t have that technology.

15. Describe the sources of international law and discuss how it is different from domestic law. What are some of the limitations of international law?

The sources of international law are customary laws, theological laws, and treaties in the international system. It is different from domestic law because domestic law is created by a legitimate authority, states are required to follow the laws, and it is a very old and sophisticated system. The differences in international law are also its shortcomings. It is newly formed, states do not have to follow it because states are the highest power, states can act in their own interests, there is no formal law making body, and there are no law documents. States do tend to follow at times only by will because they care about their international reputation and fear disorder in the international system. Realists believe that the only time states follow it is when it coincides with their interests and liberalists believe they follow it because everyone benefits by working together. Positivists believe there is no international law to being with only laws that men makes themselves and naturalists believe that international law is inherent because it is made of natural universals rights and responsibilities.


1. Arms Control- A process that produces agreements to limit the production of use of weapons or agreements on their managment 2. Democratic Peace- The phenomenon whereby stable democracies are unlikely to engage in militarized disputes with each other or to let any such disputes escalate to war. 3. Disarmament- a process aimed at the reduction in number or total elimination of weapons 4. Nuclear Proliferation- The spread of nuclear weapons or the spread of technology to other states who previously did not have those capabilities. 5. International Law- system of governing relations between states to bring order by coordinating behavior and commanding behavior and clarifying rights and duties 6. Humanitarian Intervention- The use of military force, without the consent of the target state, in which the main purpose is to relieve human suffering 7. Arms Race- An action-reaction process of acquiring arms in response to the arms acquisitions of an adversary 8. Coercive Diplomacy- A violent military threat to use force or economic sanctions. 9. Economic Sanctions- restrictions placed on the economy of one country by another country as a form of punishment 10. Checkbook Diplomacy- Giving monetary rewards to get what a country wants 11. Deterrence- a policy aimed at influencing another state or nonstate actor to not do something it would otherwise do 12. Nuclear Non Proliferation Treaty- States that did not already have nuclear weapons promised not to acquire them and states that did have nuclear weapons promised not to transfer them to nonnuclear states. 13. Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty- treaty agreed on by nuclear powers to no longer develop or test nuclear weapons 14. Legality- It is usually determined by legitimacy and often prohibits us from intervening, it cannot be upheld in the international system. 15. Legitimacy- right to use power in international affiars 16. Massive Retaliation- US policy that the US would respond with a full-fledge nuclear attack to any Soviet expansion. 17. Flexible Response- US policy to maintain both conventional and nuclear forces in order to have flexibility in dealing with communist threats 18. Positive Rights- How the benefits of society are shared by people in society, for example, your right to social welfare, right to old age pension, etc? 19. Negative Rights- fundamental freedoms of individuals of the state such as right to speech, usually involves humanitarian intervention 20. Liberalism- A perspective that emphasizes the importance of institutions and linkages between states for facilitating cooperation, coordination, and nonviolent modes of conflict resolution. 21. Realism- perspective of international relations that emphasizes the importance of self-interest power and the competitiveness of states in an anarchic international system 22. Marxism- A theory that emphasizes the dialectical or conflictual relationship between capitalists and communist states in the international system leading to the triumph of communism, not democracy. 23. Multinational Corporation- an economic enterprise with subsidiaries in one or more countries 24. World Systems Theory- A holistic view of the global economy highlighting the relationships of dominance and dependence linking the ?center? (North) and the ?periphery? (South). 25. Neo-realism- anarchic world system, state main actors, and states self-interested to maximize power but different from realism because higher emphasis is put on use politics so not always in state of conflict 26. Neo-liberalism- They believe in the scientific modeling where they try to apply things to the real world, similar to neo-realists. Other similar assumptions to those of neo-realists is that they accept anarchy and accept the importance of states but they don?t agree with realists in that its all about power and asserting your power. Neo-liberalists say that even though they are acting in their own interest, they still think that everyone can cooperate for everyone to gain (multi-sum game). 27. Polarity- Where the power of international system lies within the states (number of hegemonies) 28. Hegemony- A situation in which one state, by virtue of its military and economic predominance, is able to determine and maintain essential rules by which relations among states are governed. 29. Sovereignty- independence from any authority outside one’s territory and having supreme authority over all other entities within one’s territory 30. Nation State- 31. European Commission- organ of the european union that has the exclusive authority to initiate legislation and pursuer the goals of an ever-closer union 32. Global South- Unindustrialized countries south of the equator that depend on the economies of the North. 33. NGOs- transnational organization composed of private actors whether individuals or groups 34. Supranational Organisations- Institutions above the level of the state that are motivated by common, rather than state-specific goals, for example, the European Commission. 35. Inter governmental organisations- international organization composed of states, in which delegates represent the interests and policies of their home governments 36. Balance of Power- An arrangement, whether bipolar or multipolar, in which capabilities are fairly evenly distributed among the major actors. 37. Security Dilemma- situation in which one states security is seen as another states insecurity leading to a vicious cycle of competitive power accumulation 38. Interdependence- A relationship in which changes or events in one part of the system produce some reaction or have some significant consequence for other parts of the system. 39. Geopolitics- conduct of foreign policy with a view to the political-geographical arrangement of states, like physical location, topography and resource possession 40. Unipolarity- international system where there is one single major actor usually a single state that possesses a predominant share of capabilities and influence 41. Super terrorism- terrorism perception changed and states are seen as sitting targets where the goal is to kill as many people as possible 42. Asymmetrical warfare- exploitation of technology and psychology to target the peripheral vulnerabilities of a larger foe 43. North Atlantic Treaty Organisation- 44. Pre-emptive attacks- an attack against a country that is preparing to attack you 45. Civil War- war between groups of people between states borders usually ethnicity based wars 46. IAEA- It is an intergovernmental organization that seeks to promote the peaceful use of nuclear energy and to inhibit its uses for military purposes 47. United Nations Security Council- council in the United Nations made of – permanent members and then – rotating members with the right to veto any bill passed by the United Nations and if not agreed on by all members of the security council then the bill cannot be passed 48. Military-Industrial Complex- armory industry requires war to keep in business and those businesses put pressure on governments to keep war at hand to keep making money 49. Anarchy- arrangement that lacks a higher authority and a central feature of the modern international system 50. Tragedy of the Commons- threat to shared resources that comes from individuals having few incentives to curb their destructive behavior 51. Sustainable development- pursuit of human economic and social development while at the same time preserving the ecological systems on which development depends 52. Globalisation- process whereby economic, political, and sociocultural transactions are decreasingly constrained by national boundaries and the authority of national governments 53. Nationalism- set of psychological, cultural, and social forces that drive the formation of a nation and sustain national identity 54. Failed States- states whose governments, if they exist, cannot provide their citizens with the minimum level of security and well being expected of sovereign states 55. Nuclear Triad- nuclear force structure consisting of a bomb-carrying aircraft, land-based missiles, and a submarine-based missiles 56. First Strike Capability- ability to launch an initial nuclear attack and greatly reduce a states ability to retaliate 57. Second Strike Capability- The ability to sustain a first strike and then still retaliate with your own surviving weapons 58. Regime Type- the type of rules that govern behaviour in some specified area of international relations 59. New Wars- ideological and technical wars that have less death and destruction because of better communication to make better decisions which focus on conflict over recourse, ideologies, ethnic boundaries, and tyrannical leaders 60. Major Wars- Wars between states that have high casualty rates and large amounts of destruction 61. alliances- formal defense arrangement wherein states align against a greater power to prevent dominance 62. appeasement- a policy of making concessions to a stronger for because a nation is less willing to consider the use of force 63. Baruch Plan- manage and cooperate with nuclear weapons to eventually phase them off the face of the earth completely 64. collective security- establishment of a common institution and rule among states to settle disputes peacefully and to enforce agreements by a preponderance not balance of power 65. constructivism- a perspective that emphasizes ideas, such as worde content and social discourse over institutions or power 66. disarmament- process of mutual reduction of military arms by international agreements or convention 67. domestic level of analysis- level that focuses on demostic features of a country as a whole such as its capitalist economic system 68. European Council- summit meetings of the council of the European union involving heads of state and government to deal with issues that cut across jurisdictions and resolve issues that are blocked at lower levels of organization 69. European Court of Justice- judicial body that has the power to interpret and enforce european community treaties and law 70. gross demostic product- quantification of a country’s production of goods and services at home 71. mutually assured destruction- strategy where two nuclear powers both contain second strike capabilities and will destroy each other if entered into nuclear war 72. proxy wars- conflict sponsored by superpowers elsewhere in third party states to substitute for direct conflict 73. Bandwagoning- Joining the stronger alliance of states, in the hope of sharing the spoils of victory. 74. Absolute gains- shorthand for arrangements that improve the welfare of a state or society, even when those arrangements may be of greater benefit to other states or societies. 75. Brinkmanship- A strategy of taking a contest to the point in which both opponents are threatened with great harm or death. 76. Prisoner?s dilemma- a game in which the best strategy for both opponents is to defect, but that yields an outcome worse than the one achieved by mutual cooperation. 77. Relative gains- shorthand for agreements that improve the welfare of a state or society to a greater degree than they do for other states or societies

China- competes with the US on an economic scale. China strong economic growth and the US is strongly in debt which China has begun to help with which intertwines the two economies further. China holds 6% of US GDP, but Chinese economy depend on the US markets. Olympics show desire to be a part of international system and for the rest of the world to take them a note as being a major player. China has a very different political system so its tough for the US to understand and relate to China. China challenges US with domination of Asia and taking control of Africa as they pump money into rebuilding project. China held back from being new hegemon because major powers in that area disagree with many things they stand for. Examples are India, Japan, and Russia. China doesn’t have soft power, resources, or alliances to gain that hegemon position.

Case studies- analyze from both sides of the conflict and relate the conflict to how the different theories would analyze them. Then take a position on the conflict and explain what I think is right and defend it. Civil Wars, why take place, how they differ from major war, human rights, international law, when intervention take place, include a reference to an article read

Final Essay- How westphalian system came about and was changed throughout history to change the rules of the game for International relations and how things work in the international system today. How terrorism changes rules of the game, why terrorism differ from major war, terrorism treated as war or criminal act, how should states address this issue, how does this change the international system, how have power changes effected international relations (Russia, China, EU), are these changes good or bad and are they peaceful, nuclear weapons changes rules, clash of civilizations, include a reference to an article read

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