Alert readers will recall that last week I wrote about re-reading Ryszard Kapuscinski’s amazing book Another Day of Life, which is about the 1975 collapse of Portugal’s empire in Africa. This was part of my current investigation of the phenomenon of imperial decline, in general. The collapse of Portugal’s worldwide (mainly African) empire is an … Continue reading Exploring imperial decline with Kapuscinski and Farrusco
A large part of the international-affairs commentatoriat in the United States is opining on the issue of a possible “Cold War 2.0” with China. Some are warning it may come unless we do X, Y, or Z. Some are saying it is already here. Some are cheering it on. Some are “judiciously” saying it may … Continue reading Not Cold War 2.0. More like imperial collapse.
Ten days ago, I wrote: the world may thus soon become divided into two zones “Covid-safe” and “Covid-unsafe.” And those of us living in “Covid-unsafe” countries may find it extremely difficult to travel to many other countries… but especially to the “Covid-safe” ones. On May 13, the tireless Covid-chronicler/statistician Tomas Pueyo– who was the originator … Continue reading Pueyo and Haque on the effects of Covid-19
(This is Part 4 in my series “Covid chronicles.” Click here for the earlier parts. Note that on that portal-page the blog-posts are presented in reverse-chronological order. The image above is Wuhan, February 2020, by Yihya Alali.) The coronavirus has affected just about every country in the world, though it has affected them all very … Continue reading Covid crisis brings new global influence for China?
(This is Part 3 in my series “Covid chronicles.” Click here for the earlier parts. Also: The image above is from a video released yesterday by the Chinese TV network CGTN. I’m displaying it not because I approve of its racist depiction of Americans as babies but because it’s an interesting– probably not very effective– … Continue reading “Recovery” of nations from Covid-19
Within just 100 days, the Covid-19 pandemic has significantly shifted the balance of power in the global system from the United States toward China– and this trend looks set to continue, or accelerate, over the coming months and years. This is the case not just because U.S. deaths and death-rates from this virus (currently 71,152 … Continue reading Covid-19 sharply headbutts U.S. hegemony
There are, it seems to me, two distinct kinds of horizon that anyone considering the effects of Covid-19 on global politics and society needs to look at. One is the time horizon: Crucially, how soon until we can see the widespread (or universal?) delivery of a safe and functioning vaccine against this coronavirus. The other … Continue reading Horizons (temporal, geopolitical, & otherwise) on Covid-19
It is just as well that, when he met with Russian President Vladimir Putin in the Kremlin March 5, Turkey’s President Rejep Tayyip Erdogan did not look up to his right. If he had, he would have seen towering over him a lofty statue of Russia’s Catherine the Great, who in the 18th century sheared … Continue reading Two big powers arm-wrestle in Syria. Neither one is the United States.
It is a time of great uncertainty in international affairs. U.S. troops are deploying to Saudi Arabia for the first time in 16 years, presaging an increasingly probable showdown with Iran. The Anglosphere is likely to soon see a second, intensely nationalistic and straw-maned populist rise to the seat of government. The U.S. president has … Continue reading Reviving Westphalia
This week, Mideast watchers have been breathlessly awaiting the arrival in NATO member Turkey of the first of the two batteries of Russian-made S-400 air defense systems that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan purchased from Russia in December 2017. Officials in the State and Defense Departments have warned that, with Turkey’s receipt of the S-400s, … Continue reading Global Power Shifts Sparked in Syrian Hornets’ Nest