Thanks to Geopolitical Experts
Yves Smith John Mearsheimer Sam Wilkin Compiler W. Antoniotti 6/14/19 Return to Geopolitics
Prelude: Follow the Dollar
1. Politics at Yalta
2. Post WW 2 American Led Prosparity, Stability, Populist React
3. Considering Past Mistakes
a New International Order
Ends, U.S. Dominates
US has all the Cards.
Liberal Foreign Policy Hegemony Failed
Isolationism, Offshore Balancing, Selective Engagement
to China: A Plan
Strategic Competition Replaced Strategic Engagement, Rules TBD
4. A New Normality in the making?
Trump's Geopolitical Trade War
1. Capitalism Requires Sound Money
The Gold Standard rules geopolitics until the 20th
A Dollar Standard was created by the US because she had enough consumer and business demand, financed by debt, to supply dollars for world trade. Dollars came back to the US as foreigners bought US assets and debt. The Euro was created as a multination currency controlled by Germany. She kept a tight reign on inflation. Members who did not manage budgets soon got into trouble. This coincided with a few European bank controlling worldwide dollar trade flows using Euro's, not dollars, as collateral. But contracts required payment in dollars and the banks, wanting to maximize profit, had borrowed dollars very short term. They were in trouble when the Great Recession created a need for dollars and rolling over dollar loans became impossible. The FED, as lender of last resort, created dollar obligations which were loaned to the world's financial community. Germany believing in austerity, force debt repayment on failing countries and banks. Populism resulted. Note: FED owes the dollar obligations to the Treasury and may or may not repay them. Since 1776, a strong US economy has allowed her to refinance debt. Cost is Interest Payments.
Iraq's Economic Restructuring Agenda was issued in September of 2003 by Paul Bremmer of the Coalition Provisional Authority. Many felt these dictums were illegal under the Hague and Geneva conventions so an interim sovereign government was created. It required many neoliberal economic requirements. Key among them were 1) Private Property for everything but oil 2) Free Markets with unlimited Foreign Direct Investment/Ownership 3) Unregulated International Trade 4) Unlimited Profit Repatriation. Entrepreneurship was fostered by guaranteed Intellectual Property Rights and a conservative Flat Tax.
A 1973 U.S. orchestrated Chilean Coup had set up a new government to follow neoliberal Chicago Boys privation advise with similar requirements except copper resource ownership would not change.
Unites States controlled IMF development programs follow similar guidelines in support of the US International Trade Hegemony. But more was involved as independent leaders like Thatcher in the early 1970's and Xiaoping in the late 1970's also embraced neoliberal economics. Then Germany required similar neoliberal economic requirements in response to Great Recession budget and banking problems. .
European Populism resulted.
1648 Peace of Westphalia
Sovereignty of participants over their lands, people, and agents abroad was established.
Broken by European Colonialism
First problem came immediately as Soviets did whatever it took to keep Communists in charge of the buffer state Poland.
The US responded with the Truman Doctrine. Eventually U.S./Britain sponsored covert activities would try to slow Communist advancement. One such activity was the September of 1953 GB/US sponsored Iranian Coup to keep control Iranian oil/profit. Unintended consequences followed. First came the seizure in 1979 of the Tehran U.S. embassy by Militant Iranian students. Then, 20 years later, the 9/11 Trade Center attacks made many American feel insecure.
The US would try to maintain its sphere of influence throughout Latin America and stop Russia and China spheres of influence. Both groups made the world their spheres.
4. US Hegemony 3?
Hegemony 1 was designed to meet Cold War needs by dominating global manufacturing trade. Domination, with it extensive profit and extensive worker wage gains, began to diminish because of Tiger Country competition. Liberals did not support labor, instead union buyback enhanced US ability to compete because of slow wage growth.
To protect profit, conservatives expanded neoliberal political activities. First goal was controlling the Supreme Court by financing conservative law students to create a pool of for choosing conservative federal judges.
Business turned away from local less profitable US manufacturing and invested in overseas production. They also expanded into corporate financing activities. Chairman Greenspan took charge of the lender of last resort Federal Reserve. Keynesian dominance was being replaced by neoliberal free unregulated market economics.
Hegemony 2 made Wall Street more important than Main Street as conservative presidents Reagan, Bush I and II combined with business friendly Clinton. Obama was Wall Street friendly. Neoliberalism economic dominance was complete. The stage was set for the public to pay for inevitable market failures caused by Less Financial Regulation. A Great Recession was followed by a European Financial Collapse. The FED created money and paid the entire cost.
Hegemony 3? Will US dominates in the a world of political populism
Post WW 2 American Led Prosparity, Stability,
1648 Peace of Westphalia Sovereignty of participants over their lands, people, and agents abroad established. Broken by European Colonialism1941 Atlantic Charter No spheres of influence, territorial self-determination required
1945 Yalta Conferencesets some guidelines
First problemcame immediately as Soviets did whatever it took
to keep Communists in charge of Poland.
The US responseTruman Doctrine eventually actions like the U.S. and Britain sponsored covert activities like 9/8/53 Iranian Coup
Source History Repeating: Why Populists Rise and Fall video
A. New Boarders Especial in the Middle East
B. Europeans Faced the Moral Abyss because, as the most civilized people, she had killed 100 million people.
C. Nations must be controlled before they destroy each other.
Multiple International Organizations were needed
Success resulted as there was a 70 Year peace.
1-2. Six Weeks Changed the World
2. Russia was back and there is going to be trouble
B. Financial Organizations failed
to stop Lehman Brothers
C. Self-Ruling Technocrats failed
because they did not understand:
A. Unemployment of 20%
was not German pain and
B. Polarization was dramatic
within countries as
European Union was usurping the future
D. Not only did technocrats fail to see the problems,
the nation and they limited liberal central authority solutions.
E. Hatred, anger and outrange had to be dealt with.
1-4 Why Populist Win
History Repeating: Why Populists Rise and Fall video
A. Mainstream Elite Establishment Failed and Must be
Dr. George Friedman, Geopolitical Forecaster
A. The 21st century will be politically volatile,
The nation state is needed to bind people together.
D. World will revolve around nations
1. US with 25% of the world economy, even when acting stupidly,
still must be considered.
2. Russia, dependent on oil prices, will again continue her decline.
3. China will begin more normal economic growth but must deal with
a billion poor people.
4. Germany is trade dependent in stagnating world,
continues mercantilism, will not lead.
5. Japan has third largest GDP, a stable society, a strong Navy
and is the Asian power.
6. Russia who faces an equal Turkey, hopes for coexistence,
and hopes not to react.
7. Poland is fastest growing European economy and must be considered.
A. Multilateral Organizations Solve All of Problems.
B. Harvard Graduate Manage Organizations Solves Problems.
Source The Creation of a New International Order 20 min video
Like 1914, West Not Managing Social and Economic Change
Europe enjoyed nearly 100 years of peace.
One reason was the 1815 Treaty of Vienna had given top priority in negotiations over how various territories were to be ruled.
Second, the new liberal order, powered by the Industrial Revolution was producing improved apparent domestic prosperity reducing the attractiveness of war.
Third, British and European states territorial ambitions and colonial land grabs offered more upside with less risk of manpower and treasure.
By Anatol Lieven. a professor in the War Studies Department of King’s College London and a senior fellow of the New America Foundation in Washington DC. See Anatomy of American Nationalism republished in September 2012. Originally published in The National Interest on December 22, 2018; cross posted from open Democracy
Peace ended with World War 1 in which some 16 million Europeans died, two great European countries destroyed, and others crippled was recently celebrated. This year may be the last of 29 relatively quiet years before the world’s major powers once again moved into deep and structural mutual hostility.
WW 1 engendered the scourges of Communism and Nazism. It led to a Second World War and the near destruction of European civilizations.
Nothing the political and cultural elite who were swept away for leading their countries into war could potentially be worth the potential lost.
Western allies portrayed the war as civilizations against German barbarism. Today one can certainly say the British and French systems were better than the German; but one must admit that an Algerian subject of the French Empire or an African subject of the British Empire might have a different perspective. Also, the Russian Empire made a pretty odd member of the supposed alliance for democracy.
The 1914 barbaric threat to European civilizations was the ruling establishments. It came from decades of social and economic changes which generated hatreds and tensions building within European societies.
Before 1914, the European conservative elites encouraged aggressive nationalism to divert mass support away from socialism. To preserve the old European order, they moved in a most disastrously direction.
Today, the new cold war against China and Russia represent grave threats being generated by the conservative western establishment. A new geopolitical direction, it is comparable to that taken in during the early 20th century.
This new cold war is serving as a distraction from vastly graver threats. Western political elites are unwilling to address threats which would involve radical changes to their ideological positions. Their obsession with their own righteousness and civilizational superiority is leading to the moral civilizational fantasies that had helped bring on the 1914-18 disaster. This is liable to engender the distortion in judgment which, in the blindness of crusading frenzy, destroys nations and civilizations.
Ironies involved with the US leading a new “league of democracies” against an “authoritarian alliance” include the anti-Chinese participation of Vietnamese communists, murderous Filipino authoritarian populists, and above all Indian Hindu neo-fascists. Authoritarian and cultural nationalistic member Poland is bitterly anti-Russian. Add France in 2022 if she elects a president from the National Front.
Diverting domestic discontent into external hostility rarely works because the factors that created the discontent remain unchanged. Does anyone who has interviewed the “Yellow Vests” in France seriously think that they are acting as they do because of manipulation from Moscow? Does anyone who has seriously studied the crisis of the white working classes in the USA believe they have voted for Trump because they have been swayed by Russian propaganda?
A More important link between Russia and America is the rise of Putin and Trump. Another is the rising death rate among working class males since the 1990’s in Russia and recently in America. In addition is the diseases and addictions fueled by economic, social and cultural insecurity and despair. In Central America a far more terrible version of these pathologies is driving millions of people to seek US asylum. This is driving U.S. radicalization. Yet total US aid to Mexico in 2017 was less than that to is Ukraine or Egypt, and a fraction of that to Afghanistan. Does any truly responsible national establishment neglect its own neighborhood in this way?
Climate change threatens damage greater than anything the Chinese or Russian governments could or would wish to inflict. Yet media-politically generated hysteria over a minor Russia/Ukrainian clashes in the Sea of Azov could overshadowed close US-Russian co-operation to block the latest UN report on climate change.
There are real threats from Russia and China (notably trade) where the USA needs to push back. But these are limited issues which are negotiable or containable. They do not justifies restructuring western national geopolitical strategies and institutions around a new cold war. .
If Khrushchev had not transferred Crimea from the Russian Soviet Republic to the Ukrainian Soviet Republic in 1956, everyone would recognize the Sea of Azov as Russian, and this issue would not even exist. In the South China Sea, the USA is pushing back against China in the name of an international Law of the Sea which the USA itself does not recognize. If the Chinese were ever so mad as to use their position in the South China Sea against US trade, the US Navy could block Chinese trade to the whole of the rest of the world.”
Serbian nationalist triggered WW 1. Most British soldiers who died in the First World War had ever heard of Serbia or of Sarajevo. In the name of God, let us not make this mistake again.
1. The 21st century will
be politically volatile,
2. World is no longer
"hard wired" to a liberal
4. World will revolve around
1. Multilateral Organizations Solve All of Problems.
2. Harvard Graduate Manage Organizations Solves Problems.
2. Saving Liberal Democracy from the Extremes, FT's M. Wolf
Ends, U.S. Dominance Continues
1-1 Designing a US Foreign Policy
Determining what we want requires
Political Party System at a time when political
parties are in a reinvention process
Have a Conversation on
replacing the Breton Woods trading system
Set a Foreign Policy Goals
from a next group countries needing little
TAKE IT or LEAVE IT message to Germany, China, Russia, Korea and say
1. Largest strip of high-quality arable land in the world
2. Most Navigable Water ways in the world
3. Control best parts of a continent with moats on either side
4. If US trading system breaks down, US suffers the least! but
5. Trade is how we subsidized the Global system so getting NAFTA correct is important.
6. US is delusional
China is the next super power,
that is productive and protected from outside forces
Favorable Demography for high growth with
Ample energy to fuel the economy as dependency put a governor on grown
Doing this analysis was reported in Accidental Superpower.
Russia, a seriously terminal country, is our biggest fear
world's protector means little need to
faster because Obama did less than expected,
Obama did not care enough to have related policies.
US has forced a
acceleration of adjustments by world players.
Situation 2 U.S.
Liberal Foreign Policy Hegemony Failed
Liberalism: Focus on individualism and makes room for social contracts.
All have inalienable rights, it is universalism.
Nationalism: Focus on social group, tribalism, make room for individualism.
Realism: Focus on the state, the top of the geopolitical food chain.
Balance of Power is realist's only concern, political system is irrelevant, a black box.
Liberal foreign policy to spread liberal democracy not possible.
Defensive Realists feel competitive geopolitics, limits aggression, perpetuate status quo.
Against force in Vietnam because balance of power was not at stake.
Nationalism, "the" most powerful geopolitical doctrine, made US Vietnam success problematic.
U.S. Liberal Geopolitical Hegemony
Failures of Liberal Foreign Policy
Zone of Liberal Democracies created by expanding NATO eastward
Driving both Russia and Iran toward China is not appropriate policy.
Liberal foreign policy toward China ignored balance of power concern creating a Goliath.
National Security State is needed to fight for Democracy
around the world has
A Foreign Policy aimed at creating a Liberal Hegemony has failed.
2-5 A Realist Grand