Wednesday, October 07, 2009
(from the BC "The track of the storm" thread)
Ask yourselves a simple question. If you were the government of Japan, or Ireland, or Poland, or India or Kuwait or ...., and you saw what the government of the United States has done over the last 9 months, what would you do? This has nothing to do with whether you had previously been a friend of the U.S. or not. If your responsibility is for the future of your nation and you see the hegemon that had kept the system going for over sixty years imploding you would have to react.
The only choices available for smaller forces facing a new power distribution system with China rising and Russia rampant are confrontation or accommodation. To confront could be achieved in theory by forming new alliances to contain the rising powers. That may happen over time but for now without the promise of Uncle Sam to support them by acting as an offshore balancer to continental powers, a role that would have given space for smaller powers to play off the larger ones like France and India did during the Cold War, they are choosing to accommodate.
In Asia perhaps a coalition of nations like Japan, Australia and India will form over time. Perhaps the Japanese will be Finlandized. In Europe the triple pressures of Russian energy blackmail, Islamic subversion and Brussels authoritarianism stripping away the sinews of sovereignty make the future look even bleaker.