There has been some mainstream media press of late, lightly touching on the subject of global polarity. Yet with little intuitive and/or accurate thought; not unlike a similar case to be made for their biased and/or non-comprehensive MSM political commentary and analysis.
That view simply seeing the U.S. in lone and unchallenged hegemonic status for decades to come. Indeed, one far from reality, with no recognition whatsoever of how “Commulism” (COMMUnism fueled by CapitaLISM) has almost overnight, disturbingly crept in to aggressively challenge that supremacy.
The Analyst offers the following objective assessment to open the debate with thoughtful OpEdNews readers and thinkers, on this important distinction and vision of the future. Commentary generated which hopefully is then considered by the MSM to rethink its own on this and other related fronts. And to help the U.S. evolve with the times, to still thrive and lead.
From a “polarity” in international relations perspective, the overall Cold War situation was really one that can be described as bi-polar, with the world strategically aligning in two camps. Of course the Sino-Soviet split during that period might suggest a multi-polar situation, but the Chinese were again visibly quiet and aside from population numbers arguably not true super power status. So it's questionable during that period whether there was an active third superpower, and too if it came down to picking sides, they’d certainly align Communist (Soviet).
One can argue the period from 1989 until just recently as the world living in a uni-polar situation, with but one superpower being the U.S., possessing most of the global cultural, economic, and military influence. Call it the age of U.S. hegemony, which is now rapidly disappearing as the world moves back to a bi-polar if not derivative multi-polar mix.
Bi-polar from the standpoint that “Commulist China” has emerged as the new superpower offset to the U.S.. Multi-polar from that standpoint that a resurgent “Commulist Russia” is on the heels of China in regaining superpower status. Of course, unlike China and its diversified economy, the Russian economy’s unique exposure and sensitivity to oil and the oil price collapse is inherently clear. However, assuming no collective and substantive global effort to stabilize and sustain lower oil prices, and assuming the Russian economy can avoid collapse, that this economic setback then is a short term phenomenon only, as oil eventually recovers and dramatically increases again in the intermediate to long term.
Note: See Author’s coming article on “Oil Dictatorships”.
Other key nations, most notably BRIC + V countries India and Brazil are on the rise and at the cusp of achieving superpower status too. Vietnam (V), has aggressively embraced Commulism and is rapidly on the rise and emerging as a global power player. Given it’s growing economic might (e.g. As China’s prosperity causes labor costs to rise, China now increasingly contracts for outsourced manufacturing with Vietnam. Think Vietnam’s development at a point where China was 15 years ago), not to mention huge standing military, the Analyst suggests it be added to the high profile BRIC mix.
With Russia (and Vietnam) clearly aligned with China and Commulism, it then comes down to how India and Brazil and their own respective global strategic partners ultimately either align or not to the U.S. or China or a derivative block unto themselves and others, that will determine the next evolutionary phase of global polarity at least over the intermediate term.
A comment regarding the term "superpower". In the purest sense, which historically implied the ability of a nation to sustain itself more or less independent of the rest of the world, "superpower" may be a term of the past as respects both the U.S. (and China too) which is now deeply rooted and dependent on the global economy. China, with its ravenous appetite for natural resources, has increasing demands for food, water and minerals from across the globe to support both its population’s basic needs as well as fuel for its economic growth engine, thus generating growing dependencies and designs on other nations too. To this point, China’s (and Russia’s) aggressive investment and influence generating efforts in both Africa and South America are of significant interest and note, seemingly falling under the radar of the MSM, evident the lack of notice and coverage.
Thus, the passing of the hegemonic and/or monolithic superpower model is at hand. Unlike Cold War I, the dawn of the age of true “power blocks” is here. These will not be simply at the ready, paper military alliances but rather integrated, active and driven economic power projection entities.
This too helping the U.S. to constructively evolve under President Obama from a hegemonic to a bipolar world, yielding a refreshing new (vs. the last eight years) and shifting “unilateralism to diplomacy” approach towards the international community. This under the new umbrella theme - “Smart Power”.
Accordingly, the term hegemony will soon fade from the public lexicon, for good, as the term “superpower” itself evolves to “superblocks”.
Note: Watch for the Author’s upcoming follow-on article - “Avoiding the Roman Fall”.