Autor: Tiberio Graziani | 18. 8. 2020


Tiberio Graziani, Chairman Vision & Global Trends – International Institute for Global Analyses tibgraziani@gmail.com

Pandemic - international relations

  1. As far as international relations are concerned, the pandemic has undermined traditional partnership relationships, in particular those within the western field, accelerated the disintegration processes of the European Union, contributed to limiting the integration process of the Eurasian Economic Union , the emerging weight of Russia of and China is accentuated.

Systems based on liberal democratic principles, on individualism, on the so-called "western" principles, do not seem to resist the test of a pandemic of this magnitude. The application of these principles, or values, in conjunction with the globalization process, has destroyed the welfare system of the whole of Europe, in particular that one connected to public health.

The pandemic will be one of the factors for which new international relations and new ruling classes will arise. From this point of view, the best equipped nations will, likely, be those that will affirm the values ​​of solidarity, of the community as the foundation of political sovereignty.

  1. International relations, after Covid-19, will most likely not be the same. Now, Europeans seem to regress into national and even regional selfishness. A typical case is shown by the tensions between the central government of the Italian Republic and some regional governors.

The same principles that have so far governed international relations seem to become out of date day after day. The balance of international power is changing. This change could become irreversible if organizations such as the UN, IMF, WHO and military structures such as NATO fail to introduce adequate strategies.

  1. The pandemic has demonstrated the inadequacy of the supranational structures based on the liberal democratic model and on the so-called western values. New institutions will have to be built, based on solidarity relationships. From this point of view, the Brics forums could be a good experience to implement and extend globally.

Pandemic - global players

  1. Personally I do not have a feeling of fear about the pandemic. If we compare the Coronavirus pandemic with the "great flu" (the so-called Spanish) of the years 1918 - 1920 or with the Asian flu of the years 1956-1960, which killed millions of human beings, we can consider ourselves lucky. However, I understand the panic manifestations that occasionally take place in various parts of the world. In my opinion, they originated from the surplus of true and false information that remains in the network and is continually reiterated by social networks.

Rather, I am concerned about the lack of solidarity manifested by the European Union and its delay in planning aid to member countries such as Italy and Spain.

  1. Within the framework of competition between nations, catastrophes (natural or artificial) such as earthquakes, floods, fires, famines, exoduses and migrations, epidemics and pandemics are also folded for the purposes of power strategies. Beyond its specific origin, therefore also the Coronavirus pandemic is among the elements of comparison between the current main Powers. From this particular point of view, therefore, the current "pandemic" - as a threat to world health - also becomes a sort of global practical exercise in the context of the so-called "hybrid war", in particular, it seems to me, in the two sub-areas : that of the "information warfare" and that of the so-called "humanitarian diplomacy".

In the current pandemic, the information warfare seems to play a very important role and, in some respects, decisive, due to the pervasiveness of ICT. Wanting to be synthetic - perhaps even trivial - the "information warfare" at the time of the Coronavirus will be won by those who own the most performing algorithms and platforms.

  1. The current pandemic has exposed the fragility of states, at least of the western ones, and their subordination to the owners of large digital infrastructures. Today it is the large digital infrastructures that allow people to 'socialize' and ensure essential services. The role assumed in recent weeks by ICT will be resolved, after the emergency, in a negotiation between the main ICT companies and the States.

  2. Difficult to predict about the end of the pandemic. According to some analyses, it should arrive at a containment within a few months. However, let's remember that pandemics of this type have a long course that governments must manage.

Trump China

  1. The Trump administration's approach to the Covid 19 pandemic has been, from the outset, as confusing as it has been for several countries. Furthermore, it was an approach characterized not by the will to contain the pandemic on the rational basis of international cooperation and solidarity. On the contrary, Trump worried about pointing the finger at Beijing. There is a clear exploitation of the crisis due to the pandemic operated by Washington against Beijing. Trump is attempting to bring the health crisis back into the context of the economic, financial and geopolitical dispute with China that has characterized his foreign policy from the outset.

  2. Australia also tries to use the crisis due to the pandemic against Beijing. It does so for both internal security and geopolitical issues, particularly affecting the South China Sea.

  3. Most likely, some countries in the so-called western world will support the US in somehow holding China responsible for the spread of the Coronavirus, in order, most likely, to weaken China's credibility. This could happen and be speeded up if some industries bring legal proceedings against Beijing.

  4. The intensity of the current tension between Washington and Beijing will follow the evolution of the effects of the pandemic in the fields of economics and finance.

US elections

Due to the pandemic, it is very difficult to make predictions about the US presidential election. Until a few months ago, Trump's re-election was taken for granted.

The global lockdown due to Coronavirus, the increase in unemployed (estimated between 25 and 30 million), the collapse in oil prices and Trump's "original" claims combine to create a climate of mistrust towards the current Republican administration . This, however, does not automatically translate into an advantage for the Democratic Party which is still struggling to shrink behind Biden.

The blows made by Trump during his tenure against the so-called Deep State destabilized not only the Democratic Party, but also the cross-cutting alliances of large and powerful pressure groups in the fields of industry and finance.

It could be said that, in this period, in the USA, but also in other countries of the so-called Western world, politics is not in good health. She also appears to be suffering from a strange virus …

The general climate of mistrust that winds among all Americans will most likely reward the candidate who, from now until November, will be better able to negotiate with the US lobbies, the Fed and the Pentagon and who, above all, will show them a concrete reliability.

Following this logic, the winning candidate should be Biden. However, whether Biden is elected or Trump is reconfirmed, the Americans will have a presidency "commissioned" by large industrial groups, finance and investors in digital infrastructures, which, thanks also to the pandemic, are assuming an increasing decision-making role.

In the case of an upcoming administration led by Joe Biden, the great US strategy in the international arena will not change.

The enemies will always be Beijing and Moscow: the two lungs of the Eurasian mass. Probably, the new administration will try to play, depending on convenience, Moscow against Beijing, Beijing against Moscow, New Delhi and Moscow against Beijing.

Likewise, Washington will attempt to further weaken France and Germany to strengthen its manufacturing production.

The new US administration will have the task of redefining the traditional alliances that arose after the Second World War in the context of a reformulation of a new international order.

Washington will be forced to strengthen its relations with Britain, Israel and Japan. The strengthening of the special partnership with London will aim to help Washington control the countries of continental Europe, contain the hegemonic aims of Paris and Berlin and, internationally, influence the world financial market. Still within the framework of the control of Europe and the "containment" or, better, of the destabilization of Russia, Washington will continue in its policy of "friendship" with Warsaw, Kiev and Tbilisi.

A renewed friendly relationship with Israel, also due to the unpredictability of Erdogan's Turkey, will allow the US to maintain its role in the Near East, particularly in the context of the dispute with the Islamic Republic of Iran. A probable new relationship with Tokyo will be based on the common opposition with Beijing.

Nihil sub sole novum

Inter-ethnic protests are a constant in the US political and socio-economic dynamics. In a sense, the history of the United States itself can be interpreted as the history of relations between ethnic groups, declined within the framework of the specific North American ideology of manifest Destiny. The peculiarity of this ideology, however closely connected to the modern values of liberalism and their current evolution, is to circumscribe their conceptual horizon within the limits of the New Testament interpretation of their history and to provide a moral justification of their work to the classes and groups ethnic groups that dominate US society.

The idea of the construction of the City upon a Hill, still at the basis of the US hegemonic project, gives us back today a torn and insecure country, in the perennial search for an internal enemy (now black, but also the policeman) or external ( now China, but also Russia) and "happiness". The violent protests of recent days remind US citizens and world public opinion that the "American dream" is a nightmare from which the most marginalized classes and ethnic groups are victims. Unfortunately, the dominated will hardly be able to wake up from this nightmare, as their protests are already widely exploited in the context of the current clash between their rulers. The furry support given to the protests by the representatives of the Democratic Party is intended to condition the potential rebellion of the squares and to bring it back into the usual dialectic of American democracy.