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Arakan

New World Order 2030-50

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Things are moving and they are moving fast. What do you think the world will look like in 10 to 20 years? 

Thinking in historical dimensions, it seems to me that the upcoming decades will look more like the 1871-1914 era than anything else, i.e. instead of global corporation much more competition between the various major power blocs. 

The post WW2 cold war era was a bipolar world (plus others), with international cooperation though this cooperation was out of necessity. The 90s and the early 00s were a spill over phase of that era, a time where it seemed humanity had learned its lesson and cooperation is beneficial for all. 

That spirit is clearly gone. Several reasons:
- the rise of China as a new global superpower 
- the rise of the EU as an ever more integrated confederation of nations
- the decline of the US 
- the repercussions from the 2007/08 financial crisis 
- the perception of the US as unreliable actor (GW Bush, Donald Trump)

It will be interesting to see what the future of NATO will be, IMO the most important asset of US global hegemony.If it were up to the French, the EU bloc would already be on the path to a pan-European army. But German reluctance (and gratefulness for American support and protection during the Cold War era) kept NATO alive. Now with Brexit done it seems that the next logical step will be the final emancipation of the EU nations (also a reason why the smart American politicians never wanted the UK to leave the EU, they saw it coming). 

That would leave us with 3 major global power blocs (US, EU, China) and a group of secondary players (e.g. UK, India, Russia, Brazil, Japan) who will align themselves to one of those 3, depending on who makes the best offer. 

And of course there’s that whole issue with global warming and climate change...

Thoughts?

 

 

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I don't have any good feeling about the world that is coming. I hope for the best of course, but I expect the worst.

Few predictions

- An alliance between Russia and China is inevitable. China is in much better shape than Russia, but the former will realize that supporting the later is the only way to fight off western hegemony. Client states will join of course. I wonder about India. 

- Europe and many other western countries are not heading in a good way. We see these new protests regulations in UK. Police protections in Spain, France and elsewhere. Increase surveillance of citizens. Very soon, states will realize that all measures that have been useful (?) for the pandemic can be used for other purposes, like fighting hate speech (however it's defined), etc. Don't be surprised if the infamous Green Pass mutates itself as a tool to do everything, include signing in social media or connecting to internet. Pretty sure there are people salivating with the idea.

- Many parts of the developing world will continue to be plunged into the chaos. Partially due the stand off between China/Russia with the West. Partially because of the need to show how good we have over here. Do you want to become a Venezuela/Syria? DO YOU?

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There is absolutely no way Japan or the UK will *ever* look to China as a hegemonic sponsor in the time frame you've identified.  The historical connections and alliances based on shared values they have with the rest of the west aside, the United States is still well-poised to remain the dominant military power on the planet until well into the later part of the century.  Japan needs the aegis of the US military in the Pacific as a bulwark against Chinese regional expansionism, and it is simply unthinkable to consider the UK's allegiance for sale between 2030 and 2050.

I also disagree the EU can ever transform itself into some kind of power bloc able to rival a major power.  You brought up the effects of the 2008-09 financial crisis. The economic of fragility of the Union cannot be understated.  If another recession or depression occurs and the EU Central Bank insists on force harmonization of fiscal policies, this could spell the end of the Union in its current incarnation. The PIGS countries and whoever else may falter could well leave, perhaps to form their own union, rather than submit to a German-led insistence on austerity again.

Before any further analysis of Russia and China's threats to West are properly considered, their geo-strategic an ideological objectives need to be discerned more accurately than has been discussed so far (if at all), and therein lies the rub.  The annexation of the Crimea in 2014 is a good example - Russia's traditional need for access to a warm-water port (going back to Peter the Great), or Putin-esque global expansionism? Or if both, to what degree does the West need to be prepared for future expansion and the reasons for it.  This matters because both Russia and China have traditionally demonstrated a national paranoia about their borders and spheres of influence -at what point does a defensive buffer posture become perceived as aggressive?

Finally, when you are discussing the United States "decline," it must be taken into account that this decline will be in relative terms.  The US may implode due to hyper-partisan domestic politics, but with reference to their conventional military ability to project power at a specific time and space, they will continue to be significantly unrivalled. Outside of a terrible political decision to engage Russia or China in a conventional ground conflict on their own ground, the US will maintain a terrifyingly-capable military potential.

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While the assumption is that China will simply keep up its upward trajectory, there is an alternative possibility that if the world starts looking inward, becoming less globalised that China might lose out. If it can no longer be the factory of the world because other countries become more self reliant then that will cause it a ton of problems.

Obviously the Silk Road initiative is part of the plan to mitigate that possibility, but there is also the path that it might end up being a bit of a white elephant, China throwing tons of money at projects for which they get very little return, and end up being taken advantage of by countries they assumed they themselves were taking advantage of. 
 

As for the EU, right now it’s a bit of a mess. It’s current format doesn’t work, the Euro is a bit of a disaster and the whole bloc is going to need reform to make that currency work, essentially it needs to centralise a lot more ( one of the reasons Britain wouldn’t want to be part of that project) and there is going to be extra tension at moves to do that. Even now eastern countries are looking east rather than west. I’m not banking on EU superpower just yet 

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Until climate change, or something worse, flips the world upside down and forces everyone to come up with an entirely new model for how our global society needs to work things will mostly get worse, with short periods of false hope from both the left and right promising things they continue to fail to deliver.

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48 minutes ago, The Anti-Targ said:

Until climate change, or something worse, flips the world upside down and forces everyone to come up with an entirely new model for how our global society needs to work things will mostly get worse, with short periods of false hope from both the left and right promising things they continue to fail to deliver.

One would think that a pandemic would be sufficient to make countries and their people to work towards a common goal like when the US and Soviet Union worked to eradicate the smallpox. It hasn't been the case. In fact I feel the internal and international situation has just worsened.

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3 minutes ago, rotting sea cow said:

One would think that a pandemic would be sufficient to make countries and their people to work towards a common goal like when the US and Soviet Union worked to eradicate the smallpox. It hasn't been the case. In fact I feel the internal and international situation has just worsened.

This pandemic only killed old and unhealthy people in substantial numbers. If you want the world to truly come together over a disease then it has to either kill puppies or children (preferably both).

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8 hours ago, Tongue Stuck to Wall said:

There is absolutely no way Japan or the UK will *ever* look to China as a hegemonic sponsor in the time frame you've identified.  The historical connections and alliances based on shared values they have with the rest of the west aside, the United States is still well-poised to remain the dominant military power on the planet until well into the later part of the century.  Japan needs the aegis of the US military in the Pacific as a bulwark against Chinese regional expansionism, and it is simply unthinkable to consider the UK's allegiance for sale between 2030 and 2050.

I also disagree the EU can ever transform itself into some kind of power bloc able to rival a major power.  You brought up the effects of the 2008-09 financial crisis. The economic of fragility of the Union cannot be understated.  If another recession or depression occurs and the EU Central Bank insists on force harmonization of fiscal policies, this could spell the end of the Union in its current incarnation. The PIGS countries and whoever else may falter could well leave, perhaps to form their own union, rather than submit to a German-led insistence on austerity again.

Before any further analysis of Russia and China's threats to West are properly considered, their geo-strategic an ideological objectives need to be discerned more accurately than has been discussed so far (if at all), and therein lies the rub.  The annexation of the Crimea in 2014 is a good example - Russia's traditional need for access to a warm-water port (going back to Peter the Great), or Putin-esque global expansionism? Or if both, to what degree does the West need to be prepared for future expansion and the reasons for it.  This matters because both Russia and China have traditionally demonstrated a national paranoia about their borders and spheres of influence -at what point does a defensive buffer posture become perceived as aggressive?

Finally, when you are discussing the United States "decline," it must be taken into account that this decline will be in relative terms.  The US may implode due to hyper-partisan domestic politics, but with reference to their conventional military ability to project power at a specific time and space, they will continue to be significantly unrivalled. Outside of a terrible political decision to engage Russia or China in a conventional ground conflict on their own ground, the US will maintain a terrifyingly-capable military potential.

I agree to the first part. The UK and Japan will stay in the US domain of influence. Not so sure about other rising ASEAN countries, e.g. the Philippines or Indonesia. 
 

I completely disagree with your assumption about the EU. I don’t know where you are from but what politicians from the UK or US never understood: the EU project was always much more than a economic alliance but especially the Brits only saw it through the economic lens. A huge blindness. Not everything in life is about money but this is not easily understandable for countries who never saw widespread devastation. The French, the Benelux countries, Italy or Germany on the other hand know very well what that means. The EU from the Franco-German perspective is a value union. As I said, so far it was mainly Germany who was a hindrance to a further integration in terms of foreign and security policies. This is changing, slowly but steadily. The core EU will not break, that’s just a wet dream of Trumpists and Brexiteers. And as I said earlier not everything in life is about money. 

With regards to China and Russia and their national „paranoia“. Another blind spot based on ignorance especially among UK and US politicians. Let it put this way: given what those countries went through between 1914-45 (Russia) and 1890-49 (China) this „paranoia“ is understandable. I mean the US went full berserk mode because of a very limited single attack on its soil with a limited number of casualties (911). It would be wise for the US to accept that those countries define, rightly or wrongly, their limited spheres of influence. The same the US does (though limited in this case means the whole of Latin America). The Chinese and Russians will not stand down in this case, monetary losses notwithstanding. 
 

Understanding international relations also means understanding cultural, sociological and psychological attitudes of nations and people. Something the Anglo-Americans are very bad at (and Germany quite good). 
 

Yes, the US will stay a dominant military power but their soft power will decrease more and more. Believe it or not, accept it or not, it’s the European Union which is ever more becoming the shining city on the hill, a viable alternative to the US and model for Africa, Asia and Latin America. 

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The problem is that the EU is connected to a whole lot of places that can easily screw them over; the US is not. 

The EU is going to continue to have a massive brunt of a refugee crisis down the road. As more and more countries start having crisis after crisis due to climate change, they're going to be going to places that they can reach which have support - and for a lot of those countries, that's the EU. North Africa, ME, other parts of Asia, Russia - all have relatively easy times getting to the EU. By comparison, the US has the Mexico border, and Mexico alone makes that very difficult to deal with (and will be even worse in 10-15 years). 

EU might be seen as that shining city on the hill, but that's going to make it worse for them. 

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American soft power really won’t be replaced by EU power. EU is struggling to maintain soft power within  its own neighbours 

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51 minutes ago, Heartofice said:

American soft power really won’t be replaced by EU power. EU is struggling to maintain soft power within  its own neighbours 

Who said replaced? An alternative? For sure. Just ask Asians, Latin Americans or Africans. With Brexit finally done the EU will more and more align itself internally which will help externally. And a big plus is that basically all the world sees the EU as a fair and correct player. Not perfect for sure but at least trying. 
 

American and UK rightwingers are hating everything the EU stands for, hoping for its implosion. But guess what, we are here to stay. Cooperation and solidarity instead of selfishness and egotism. Sounds quite sexy to me. 

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2 minutes ago, Arakan said:

Who said replaced? An alternative? For sure. Just ask Asians, Latin Americans or Africans. With Brexit finally done the EU will more and more align itself internally which will help externally. And a big plus is that basically all the world sees the EU as a fair and correct player. Not perfect for sure but at least trying. 
 

Do they think that? I find that pretty questionable. If that is their opinion then I’d say they were a little forgetful
 

I don’t think even the most hardline brexiteers want the EU to implode. Reform definitely. I don’t think the aims of the EU and the reality of the EU go hand in hand, and that is the issue.

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We've been living in the Gilded Age for quite a while already, where massive corporate and capitalist and political corruption has run amok, and I don't really care prevail.  Only some massive regulation and trust busting and labor progress will change things.  But even Teddy R's vaunted trust buster actions were not all that much.  Only FDR's administration truly changed things.

Climate catastrophe for the poors! Socialism for the rich!

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14 hours ago, Chataya de Fleury said:

Children, and at a 30% mortality rate, with most of the survivors being blind or disfigured.

I think you have the formula for world peace.

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I think it's unlikely but not actually impossible that by 2050 the US will no longer exist as it stands now. If that happens all bets are off the table. Empires don't often exist this stably for this long, and we've seen the cracks widening in recent years quite obviously.



 

10 hours ago, Arakan said:

And a big plus is that basically all the world sees the EU as a fair and correct player. Not perfect for sure but at least trying. 


The EU itself might be seen as a fair player (not sure that's entirely true, but it's seen as fucking over its own members eg Greece more than others so it doesn't have colonialist implications in the whole world like others do) but its member states carry huge baggage, Belgium/Holland/France/Spain/Portugal with colonial legacies, Poland/Hungary with increasingly problematic governments. That isn't gonna go away, with the former causing troubles with relations outside the EU and the latter potentially weakening it from the inside. And although the UK was the loudest 'we don't want to be the USEU' voice it certainly wasn't the only one, EU integration isn't gonna be magically smooth from here on out.

Don't get me wrong I think the EU is a great project but you definitely seem to be overestimating how smoothly it's gonna come together and step up in play as a world power that everyone loves.

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18 hours ago, The Anti-Targ said:

This pandemic only killed old and unhealthy people in substantial numbers. If you want the world to truly come together over a disease then it has to either kill puppies or children (preferably both).

 

16 hours ago, Chataya de Fleury said:

Children, and at a 30% mortality rate, with most of the survivors being blind or disfigured.

If you look at history, it’s actually children (smallpox) or cows (rinderpest)

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, polishgenius said:

I think it's unlikely but not actually impossible that by 2050 the US will no longer exist as it stands now. If that happens all bets are off the table. Empires don't often exist this stably for this long, and we've seen the cracks widening in recent years quite obviously.



 


The EU itself might be seen as a fair player (not sure that's entirely true, but it's seen as fucking over its own members eg Greece more than others so it doesn't have colonialist implications in the whole world like others do) but its member states carry huge baggage, Belgium/Holland/France/Spain/Portugal with colonial legacies, Poland/Hungary with increasingly problematic governments. That isn't gonna go away, with the former causing troubles with relations outside the EU and the latter potentially weakening it from the inside. And although the UK was the loudest 'we don't want to be the USEU' voice it certainly wasn't the only one, EU integration isn't gonna be magically smooth from here on out.

Don't get me wrong I think the EU is a great project but you definitely seem to be overestimating how smoothly it's gonna come together and step up in play as a world power that everyone loves.

You are right of course that currently we do have a rightwing Problem within the Union. Especially Hungary is worrisome. But I am not surprised, these proto-fascist and racist attitudes have been building up over many decades. They (same as the Austrians) never did honest soul-searching when it comes to their Nazi/fascist past so to say. For Americans: imagine Deep South attitude towards the ante bellum era and civil war. Poland I am hopeful to turn the tide. Awesome people who have been misguided by shit politicians. 
 

Maybe I am too hopeful but what else is their hoping for? The alternative is going back to a dog eat dog world full of selfishness when it comes to international relations. And if that happens we can forget about even thinking fighting global warming or the repercussions of climate change. 

Edited by Arakan

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Posted (edited)

The thing is, countries cooperate all the time , on a number wide ranging issues. You seem to be under the assumption that without the EU everything would be dog eat dog.

Cooperation is a good thing. The question  is whether you need a centralised, politically foggy organisation whose ultimate goal is federalisation like the EU to do it

Edited by Heartofice

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41 minutes ago, Heartofice said:

The thing is, countries cooperate all the time , on a number wide ranging issues. You seem to be under the assumption that without the EU everything would be dog eat dog.

 

I mean, one of the primary objectives of the EU was to reduce the number of occasions where entire nations spend millions and millions blowing each other to shit. History says they did a pretty good job of that.

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5 minutes ago, Spockydog said:

I mean, one of the primary objectives of the EU was to reduce the number of occasions where entire nations spend millions and millions blowing each other to shit. History says they did a pretty good job of that.

What makes you think the EU is responsible for that? Would you concede there might be a number of other reasons at play? 
 

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