Lineups at the Present
صف بندی های گلوبال در زمان حاضر
To better understand state of the world with regards to radical Islamist attacks and wars in the Middle East, it may be useful to take a fresh look at global lineups at the present. Over ten years ago at the time of US intervention in Iraq, new global visions to comprehend the world in contrast to the Cold War era were extensively discussed (1). The conflict of US and other Western countries with Russia in Ukraine last year showed the changed Cold War type of spheres of influence still plays a major role in regional conflicts.
In Europe, most former Eastern Bloc
countries such as Baltic States are NATO members, are in the U.S. sphere of
influence and keep distance from Russia; whereas some others are like Belarus
which is not only CSTO member but is very close to Russia. Also remnants of
countries like Yugoslavia are mainly US allies except for Serbia which is close
to Russia. Some Eastern European countries that used to keep distance from
Russia but were not US allies, such as Albania, are not only NATO members today
but are fully in US sphere of influence. The same can be said about Romania. In
Asia Minor, some former Soviet states such as Armenia are closer to Russia,
whereas in Caucasus region, Georgia is a close US ally and Azerbaijan, although
a CIS member, is closer to the US. It is as if the Cold War map has changed but
it still exists. In Middle East, Iran which used to be a US ally is now closer
to Russia whereas Iraq that used to be close to Russia is now closer to the U.S.
and they are both more nonaligned than they were during the Cold War era.
The reality is that although such lineups of the past are redrawn but neither Russian power is that important globally nor US-Russia's lineups are determining factors in global power maps. In fact, not Russia, but China is the only world power that rivals the US. China which is the only major Communist country in the world has so far handled its relations with the West in a cordial manner in the 21St Century. Perhaps a lot of what tensions we see in the relations of Russia versus US and Europe is more due to arrogance and errors of diplomacy on both sides than to be the inevitability of differences of socio-political systems that world witnessed during the Cold War era. The global lineups of US and Russia are basically remnants of the past Cold War in a new form. The world has seen similar phenomena when old colonial powers like Portugal, Holland and Spain were replaced by UK, France and Germany. The heat due to remnants of old world order should not be mistaken with the forthcoming global lineups that are not necessarily defined by political power of nation states in the future (2).
The relationship of radical Islamist movement and globalization has been discussed extensively during the last decade (3). Facing radical Islamist threat today which is similar to the situation in 2001 requires a global cooperation of modern forces. All sides of the remnants of Cold War era are modern and reality is that neither side believes in any Utopian paradise for the world. But many of the Islamist forces used to be US allies and still the opposition of many of these groups to Russian influence is welcome by the US. On the other hand, the Utopian totalitarian models which were present in modern states in the forms of Fascism and Communism of 20th Century are far from the thinking of Russia and China of today. We are not living in the times of Stalin and Mao. The only movements that are promoting Utopian models to justify their despotic actions are the Islamist radicals and that is a global issue to deal with. The radical Islamists provide false hope for those seeking such pipe dreams in a world which has no modern lineup to advocate imaginary paradises. In short global lineups in the world are on one hand the remnant of the Cold War era which still lingers on and prevents global efforts to make progress on the regional issues; and on the other hand we are facing a very strong fanatic Islamist movement that advocates a Medieval Utopia as a panacea to fix all problems of humanity (4).
Hoping for a democratic and secular futurist republic in Iran,
Sam Ghandchi, Editor/Publisher
January 19, 2015
1. A Vision from City of Heretics
2. Nation States and Global Lineups
3. Islam and
4. Middle East Trapped in Utopianism