It is indeed very difficult to explain power. It assumes various shapes. Still in its essence, it is one indivisible whole. However, for the purpose of academic analysis, it may be divided into various forces :

I. Military Power:

It is the most distinct form of national power. It is the last shape the other forms assume to express power. Every aspect of State is aimed at developing the capacity to wage and win war. ‘ It is the final alternative that determines power. It has been not only the most effect but also the most widely used form of natio­nal power.

2. Economic Power:


Next in importance comes the economic power. War cannot be fought and won unless a nation has a strong industrial and economic basis. In reality, the manifestation (show) of other forms of power depends upon economic strength.

It helps not only in building and maintaining huge military establishment but also in controlling markets, raw-materials, credit and transportation. It is used to exert pressure on other countries.

3. Power over Opinion:

Power over the opinion of masses is equally important for political purposes. Power over opinion is comm­only known as propaganda. It is used in various forms. It is used to give false news to lower down the morale of the enemy and also to turn other countries against him.


Conversely, it is used to build up morale at home, create public spirit for sacrifices and national unity.

4. Power over Diplomacy:

Palmer and Perkins consider diplo­macy also as one of the forms of power. Some scholars regard it as an element of power. Plainly speaking, it is through diplomacy that other forms of power are made really effective.

It is through diplomacy that some weak and poor nations may gain prestige in the international community.