The national interest, often referred to by the French expression raison d’ Etta (English: reason of the State), is a country’s goals and ambitions whether economic, military, or cultural. The concept is an important one in international relations where pursuit of the national interest is the foundation of the school.

The national interest of a state is multi-faceted. Primary is the state’s survival and security. Also important is the pursuit of wealth and economic growth and power. Many states, especially in modern times, regard the preservation of the nation’s culture as of great importance. Concept today

Today, the concept of “the national interest” is often associated with political Realists who wish to differentiate their policies from “idealistic” policies that seek either to inject morality into foreign policy or promote solutions that rely on multilateral institutions which might weaken the independence of the state.

As considerable disagreement exists in every country over what is or is not in “the national interest”, the term is as often invoked to justify isolationist and pacifistic policies as to justify interventionist or warlike policies.