Primarily, physical geography is the study of the earth’s surface facial appearance and the connected developments. Although physical geography explores the geographic patterns of climate, flora, soils, landforms, and the corporeal milieu that emanate from the internal reactions, it has been an integral tool in international relations.
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Significantly, physical geography amalgamates with human geography to produce a mixture of the multifaceted exchanges between the natural world and society. There are two branches of physical geography, climatology and geomorphology. Climatology deals with the observation and analysis of weather conditions over an extensive period. For example, physical geography deals with varieties, sources, and distinctiveness of climates right through the world thus, international relationship.
Through the study of physical geography, human beings are able to understand and recognize diverse kinds of climates and consequently, construe the regional blueprint of allotment over the surface of the earth. For example, flight between two countries is possible if each country understand the climate of another country.
On the other hand, geomorphology deals with the origin and development of landforms and in particular, the manner they occur on the surface of the earth. It also deals with the study of water catchment areas, oceanography and topographical features on the surface of the earth.
In general, geography is the study of distribution of human beings and things over the surface of the earth, and the interrelationship between human beings and the natural world. Thus, an understanding of physical geography is a vital component in examining the current events taking place on earth and international relations. In addition, through physical geography, we understand why some countries are poor while others are rich.
In most cases, countries that mine natural resources such as minerals and oil are rich and always dominate in international markets. Nevertheless, for countries to enter into agreement to exchange their goods and services, they have to sign treaties, which will oversee the smooth running of the affair. Not once, various countries have solved regional differences and conflict that result into political, economic and social interests due to the prior knowledge on physical geography.
Physical geography plays a significant role in international relations. For example, in solving boundary problems between two bordering countries, physical features like mountains and rivers all play a significant role. The ongoing conflict between Sothern and Northern Sudan that has claimed millions of lives is mainly due to physical resources.
This calls for diplomacy to solve the ailing problem. Geographical theories depicts the five geographical features, that is, size, location, topography, natural resources and climate, as the factors that dominate international relations. For example, for a long time, European Union has been in a deadlock over its institutional boundaries.
However, the prior knowledge of physical geography has enabled European Union to solve this problem by extending the institutional reach towards Central and Eastern Europe to include other countries for the sake of fostering regional peace. The main reason of extending the boundary to include countries form this region, considered by many as a crush zone, was to create peace between Western Europe and Russia.
A number of geographical factors have contributed to regional and international wars hence, calling knowledge of international relations to solve the disputes. It is important to note that the physical geography of a region favors a particular country in winning the war.
Perhaps this is the reason why even from the ancient times, the acquisition of natural resources has in most cases, resulted into conflict and war between communities or countries. Nevertheless, through the knowledge of international relations and physical geography, peace and tranquility has returned into war torn areas. Thus, physical geography is an imperative discipline in the study of international relations.