This is the year that serial hammer blows to the Western alliance system and the edifice of global governance threaten to bring the old order tumbling down.
“The geopolitical environment is the most dangerous it’s been in decades,” warns Eurasia Group, political risk adviser to the world’s elites, and a Davosian voice of globalist ideology.
Pax Americana is unravelling. The transatlantic concord underpinning the West since the 1950s is dying. Nato, the G7, the G20, the WTO, and the EU are all in varying degrees of crisis. Vladimir Putin’s Russia has an open goal.
“Every single one of these is trending negatively. And most in a way that hasn’t been in evidence since World War II,” said Eurasia in its annual outlook.
Anti-liberal strongmen are tugging away at the edges in Turkey, Brazil, and Hungary. Some in the twilight zones of the democratic world are drifting towards the Putin-Xi camp. “US alliances everywhere are weakening. The limited trust that underpins the US-China relationship appears to be gone,” it said.
The dystopian picture is grim enough even at this late stage of global economic expansion, which begs the question what would happen in a deep recession with mass unemployment.
Eurasia Group warned that 2019 could “turn out to be the year the world falls apart” although it is not the central forecast. Denouement may take a little longer. There is much ruin in a great geopolitical order, to paraphrase Adam Smith.