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America: The World’s Mediator? (1999 Daniel J. Meador Lecture), 51 Alabama Law Review 715 (Winter 2000)


The end of the Cold War brought about a substantial restructuring
ofmany aspects of the international political system,
including its method for managing disputes. Under the Cold
War's regime of bi-polarity, typically one of the "superpowers"
would line up behind one participant to the dispute and the
other "superpower" would line up behind the other. Bi-polarity
frustrated dispute resolution because each of the disputing
states would then have access to economic and military support,
to the friendship of a permanent member of the Security Council,
and to a network of alliances. The result, most commonly,
was deadlock. The end of the Cold War seemed to bring hopes of
avoiding such paralysis. The United States of America stepped
into a new role, and as "the only remaining superpower" it took
an increasingly active role in managing the disputes of other

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