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How many players are really in this "new cold war"?

Reader comment on item: The Middle Eastern Cold War: Updates

Submitted by Michael S. (United States), Mar 27, 2014 at 16:32

The Cold War, as well as the birth of the modern State of Israel and the collapse of the Colonial World Order, began with the plucking up of Germany, Italy and Japan in World War II. That war was a convulsive event, which led to the "Councilar Europe", "Eight Nation Alliance" and "League of Nations" powers essentially becoming vassals of the US -- all of them, that is, except the Soviet Union, the heir of the Russian Empire. The Russians remained as a common enemy of this new alliance, which was formalized into groups such as NATO & its sister defence treaties, the G-7 and the OECD. Besides having a common enemy, this super-alliance was held together by a common ideology, which could best be described as "Anti-Sovietism". The main points are as follows:

1. The Soviets were atheist; the West, therefore, represented Theism

2. The Soviets were socialist; the West, therefore, represented Capitalism

3. The Soviets were a dictatorship; the West, therefore, represented Democracy.

With the fall of the Soviet Union around 1989-91, the West was suddenly without a Bogeyman. The Ruskies were therefore quickly replaced by a succession of Third World players: first Saddam Hussein, then Al Qaeda and then, briefly, the Iranians. None of these fit very well as common enemies, because

1. the new players were Muslims; but it had become politically inconvenient to describe the West as "Anti-Islamic"

2. the West had become a mix of socialism and monopoly capitalism; and our new "enemies" didn't really have an economic agenda

3. Identifying with "democracy" has fallen on its face; because when given a democratic choice, much of the world freely chose to associate with our enemies.

What has happened, therefore, instead of a "New Cold War", is a New Unipolar World Order, led by the US and its sychophantic allies and opposed by a hodgepodge of regional players. The Saudi-Egyptian bloc, the Turko-Qatari bloc, the Iran-Syria bloc, the Al-Qaeda bloc and splinter Islamist blocs, opportunistic groups like the Lord's Liberation Army and purely criminal blocs such as the competing Mexican drug cartels have been the principal troublemakers. Because none of these satisfactorally fills the void left by the collapse of the Soviets, Mr. Obama has been fetching about to find a major new "enemy" of significant credibility. Lately, the Chinese fill that space in the minds of some 20% of Americans; more recently, with the Crimean "Anschluss", Russia is beginning to slide into that place. The comfortable, pacificst West, however, has not really latched onto either.

The "Cold War" is a global phenomenon. The conflicts between Israel, the Saudis, the Syrians, etc. are more regional in scope; they are simply not in the "Cold War" league. Eventiually, I DO expect the West to settle on a suitable enemy to align itself against: a messianic figure who plans to replace the current world order with a new, heavenly one. Whether such a figure is real or imagined is irrelevant: He, she or it simply needs to be real or monstrous in people's imaginations. In the imaginary world that people increasingly are living in, Israel would seem to fill the bill.

That's how I see it unfolding, though I certainly don't advocate it.

Submitting....

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