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[Francis Fukuyama, Identity. The demand for dignity and the politics of resentment. Deusto, Barcelona, 2019. 208 p.]
review / Emili J. Blasco
The democratic deterioration we are seeing in the world today is generating a literature of its own, like that which, on the opposite phenomenon, arose with the democratic springtime experienced after the fall of the Berlin Wall (what Huntington called the third wave of democratization). In that moment of optimism, Francis Fukuyama popularized the idea of the "end of history" -democracy as the final written request in the evolution of human institutions-; today, in this democratic autumn, Fukuyama warns in a new essay of the risk that identity, stripped of liberal safeguards, will phagocytize other values if it remains in the hands of resurgent populist nationalism.
The warning is not new. Huntington, who in 1996 published his Clash of Civilizations, highlighted the driving power of nationalism, was not moved by it; then, in recent years, various authors have referred to the recession of the democratic tide. Fukuyama quotation the expression of Larry Diamond "democratic recession", noting that compared to the leap made between 1970 and the beginning of the new millennium (from 35 to 120 electoral democracies), today the issue has decreased.
The last famous theorist of the International Office to write about this was John Mearsheimer, who in The Great Delusion notes how the world today realizes the naivety of thinking that the liberal architecture was going to dominate the domestic and foreign policy of nations. For Mearsheimer, nationalism is once again emerging strongly as an alternative. This had already been observed just after the decomposition of the Eastern Bloc and the USSR, with the Balkan war as a paradigmatic example, but the democratization of Central and Eastern Europe and its rapid entry into NATO led todelusion.
It has been the personality and policies of the current inhabitant of the White House that has put some American thinkers, including Fukuyama, on alert. "This book would not have been written if Donald J. Trump had not been elected president in November 2016," warns the Stanford University professor, director of his Center on Democracy, development and the Rule of Law. In his view, Trump "is both a product and a contributor to democratic decline" and is an exponent of the broader phenomenon of populist nationalism.
Fukuyama defines populism in terms of its leaders: "Populist leaders seek to use the legitimacy conferred by democratic elections to consolidate their power. They claim a direct and charismatic connection with the people, who are often defined in narrow ethnic terms that exclude important parts of the population. They dislike institutions and seek to undermine the checks and balances that limit a leader's power staff in a modern liberal democracy: courts, parliament, independent media and a non-partisan bureaucracy."
It is probably unfair to hold against Fukuyama some conclusions of The End of History and the Last Man (1992), a book often misinterpreted and taken out of his theoretical core topic . The author has then further concretized his thinking on the institutional development of social organization, especially in his titles Origins of Political Order (2011) and Political Order and Political Decay: From the Industrial Revolution to the Present Day (2014). Already in the latter he pointed to the risk of regression, particularly in view of the polarization and lack of consensus in American politics.
In Identity, Fukuyama considers that non-ethnic nationalism has been a positive force in societies whenever it has been based on the construction of identities around liberal and democratic political values (he gives the example of India, France, Canada and the United States). This is because identity, which facilitates a sense of community and belonging, can contribute to six functions: physical security, quality of government, promotion of economic development , increase in the radius of trust, maintenance of social protection that mitigates economic inequalities, and facilitation of liberal democracy itself.
However -and this may be the book's intended warning-, at a time of recession of liberal and democratic values, these are going to accompany the identity phenomenon less and less, so that in many cases it may change from integrating to excluding.
[Pablo Simón, The modern prince: Democracy, politics and power. discussion, Barcelona 2018, 272 pages]
review / Alejandro Palacios
The International Office are guided in each State by a series of leaders and, indirectly, by political parties that are elected more or less democratically by the citizens. Therefore, the high volatility of the vote that we see spreading today in our societies has indirect repercussions on the drift of the international system. This book attempts to review the political systems of some countries to try to explain, in essence, how citizens interact within each political system. The relevance of the book is therefore more than justified.
In fact, by understanding the voting tendencies of citizens, shaped by social divisions and the political system they face, we can get an idea of why such politically radical leaders as Trump or Bolsonaro have emerged. For example, voting in a majoritarian system is not the same as voting in a proportional system. Nor do young people and adults, city dwellers and country dwellers, or men and women vote the same (divisions known as the triple electoral gap).
The author of the book, the Spanish political scientist Pablo Simón, takes as a starting point the Great Recession of 2008, a moment in which new political options began to emerge, encouraged in part by the loss of confidence in both traditional political parties and in the system itself. At the same time, the work attempts to vindicate the importance of the existence of a political science that, as such, is capable of taking a popular assertion about a relevant topic , contrast it empirically and draw mostly general conclusions that help to confirm or disprove that belief.
Pablo Simón also combines the practical analysis of real cases in different countries with theoretical clarifications. This financial aid makes it easy for less familiar readers to follow the explanations of the phenomena he explains reference letter, thus making this book accessible to the general public and not only to an audience specialized in political theory and analysis.
The comparison that the author makes of the different political systems of several countries (he talks about Spain, but also about France, Belgium and the United States, among others) makes this book an excellent guide of enquiry for all those who, without being specifically dedicated to it, want to have a global idea of the party systems in the rest of the world and of the reason for the current political dynamics.
As a counterpoint to the effort of knowledge dissemination there is logically a lesser depth in certain aspects addressed. But it is precisely this informative approach that makes the text pleasant to read, both for the clarity and conciseness of its content (not excessively technical and with theoretical clarifications) and for its length (barely 275 pages). In final, a book which constitutes the perfect guide for all those interested in the functioning of politics in a broad sense, its causes and effects.
[David Alandete. Fake News: The New Weapon of Mass Destruction. publishing house Planet. Barcelona, 2019. 296 pp.]
review / Naiara Goñi Pérez
The field of defence and security today is not limited only to the military field, but having acquired greater dimensions, it requires a approach global. Cybersecurity requires more attention than ever before, as it affects so many Structures as well as the civilian population (this is known as a "hybrid conflict"). The fields of information, communication and political and social sciences are equally affected; Here their threat moves under the names of fake news, disinformation, emotional truths, post-truth...
The book "Fake News: The New Weapon of Mass Destruction" is a research about the dimension and presence that disinformation has acquired in the media. The author points out in his book the lack of protection to which journalists are subjected at a time when control of the distribution of information has been lost, due, among other factors, to the proliferation of social networks. The motivation for the book itself arises from a smear campaign suffered by the author himself, who from the pages of El País, a newspaper of which he was direct attachment, denounced the presence of both Russian actors and Julian Assange, creator of Wikileaks, in the Catalan conflict.
David Alandete provides a large number of sources to support his arguments. He supports his story with numerous examples of fake news, details the methods used to spread disinformation, and reference letter programs of study that measure the impact of these practices on democracy.
Although, as stated above, the purpose The aim of the book is to document the role of fake news and disinformation around the Catalan referendum of 1-O. Alandete also addresses other examples of interference, such as Brexit, the yellow vest protests in France, the German elections...
A total of 20 chapters make up the structure of the book, with headlines taken from disinformation campaigns, such as "Tanks in the streets of Barcelona" or "No one could expect this to happen in a country as prosperous as Germany", which give an idea of what will be uncovered and denied in the following pages.
Disinformation seeks, broadly speaking and in the author's own words, to recreate an alternative reality in which the sources of information are frequently points of view or opinions and are generally manipulated. Another characteristic feature is the absence of signature, which makes it difficult to trace the veracity of a particular content and impossible to hold its author accountable. The goal The main focus behind these campaigns is to destabilize democracy, and it is carried out by "studying the fears of each country, appealing to the most deep-rooted problems in each society and publishing dubious or outright false information to create divisions." The main architects are the media that amplify the news (the growth in the employment bots); They also have as an ally a decisive factor pointed out from the beginning of the book: "Human psychology is the main reason for the success of disinformation".
The interest of the work lies in the analysis of the status Once the disinformation machinery has acted. Spain is a clear example of passivity in the face of this challenge, since, as the author points out, in the case of the illegal referendum held in Catalonia in 2018 "there was no foresight or strategy. The battle of communication was already lost." However, countries such as Germany promoted the anti-fake news law before the elections. The truth is that these measures involve a tension between freedom of expression and sanctions for disinformation. To overcome this dilemma, it is necessary to establish preventive measures in such a way as to eradicate the problem without falling into the subjugation of freedom of expression.
The great contribution of the book is, without a doubt, to illustrate this "theory of disinformation" with practical and real examples of it. In finalhis purpose to base their arguments on a research convinces the reader that fake news is indeed the new weapon of mass destruction. goal it is to destabilize democracies.
degree program among the armed forces of major powers to develop and incorporate laser systems
With the development The use of intercontinental missiles could no longer make sense, as they can be easily intercepted and shot down, without causing collateral damage. In this way, the nuclear threat will have to turn to other possibilities, and laser weapons will most likely become the new object of desire of the armed forces.
▲ High Energy Tactical Laser [US Army]
article / Isabella León
Since the British government offered more than $76,000 to anyone who could design a ray gun that could kill a sheep at 100 meters before World War II, technology in this field has advanced a lot. In 1960 Theodore Maiman invented the first laser and that accelerated the research to develop deadly beams capable of destroying any artifact sent by the enemy and at the same time causing significant damage to electrical components through a side effect of radiation. Today, the Progress in this subject as the greatest military breakthrough since the atomic bomb.
Laser weapons are valued due to their speed, agility, accuracy, cost-effectiveness, and anti-stall properties. These weapons are literally a beam of light that moves coherently, so they can hit targets at a speed of 300,000 kilometers per second, intercept numerous targets, or the same goal many times, get to the goal with extreme precision without causing collateral damage and resisting electromagnetic interference. They are also much cheaper than conventional munitions, costing a dollar with each laser shot.
However, laser weapons possess some limitations: they require a large amount of power, a size and weight adapted to military platforms, and effective thermal management. In addition, their structure depends on the composition of their targets (wavelengths are absorbed or reflected according to the characteristics of the surface of the material), the different ranges they must reach and the different environments and atmospheric effects to which they will be subjected. These aspects affect the behavior of the weapon.
However, despite these limitations, the major powers have long been committed to the immense potential of this technology as a strategic weapon.
The department U.S. Defense Agencies has worked extensively to contribute to the development of the laser weapon system in specific protective fields, such as the U.S. Navy, Army, and Air Force.
In the department of naval defense, is particularly involved in this field. The Navy has developed what is known as the Laser Weapon System (LaWS) consisting of a solid-state laser and fiber optics that acts as an adjunct weapon, and is linked to a rapid-fire anti-missile system, as a defensive and offensive weapon for aircraft. The LaWS has as its goal shoot down small drones and damage small boats about a mile away.
The most recent developments have been awarded to the multinational company Lockheed Martin, with a $150 million contract, for the advancement of two high-powered laser weapon systems, known as HELIOS, which will be the successor to LaWS. This is the first system to blend a high-energy laser with long-range intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance capabilities, and its goal is to destroy and blind drones and small boats.
The Army is also experimenting with laser weapon systems for installation in armored vehicles and helicopters. In 2017, the Armed Forces Strategic Command (ARSTRAT) armed a Stryker with a high-energy laser and developed the Boeing HEL MD, its first high-energy mobile laser, with a missile, artillery and mortar (C-RAM) platform, consisting of a 10kW solid-state laser. At the same time, research has been carried out to reach 50 kW and 100 kW of energy.
On the other hand, the Air Force wants to attach lasers to fighter jets, drones, and cargo planes to attack ground and air targets. In fact, the Army has continued its research to test its first airborne laser weapons in 2021. One of its programs is a 227 kg Gamma that produces 13.3kW and whose structure allows many laser modules to combine and produce a 100kW light.
In addition, another contract has been awarded to Lockheed Martin to business Work on a new laser turret for aircraft, in which a beam that controls 360 is implemented Degrees to shoot down enemy aircraft and missiles above, below, and behind the aircraft. The system has undergone many examinations and emerged in the project SHiELD, whose goal is to generate a high-powered laser weapon for tactical fighter jets by 2021.
In recent years, China has implemented opening-up policies that have put the nation in a state of crisis. contact with the rest of the world. The same process has been accompanied by a modernization of its military equipment, which has become source of concern to their strategic rivals. In fact, there have been several diplomatic confrontations in this regard. With this modernization, China has developed a five-ton chemical laser system that will be located in the leave Earth orbit by 2023.
China divides its laser weapon system into two groups: strategic and tactical. The former are high-powered, airborne or ground-based, which have as their goal intercept ICBMs and satellites thousands of miles away. The latter are low-powered, generally used for short-range air defense or defense staff. These targets are unmanned aerial vehicles, missiles and slow-flying aircraft with effective ranges between a few meters and 12 kilometers away.
Among the most striking Chinese innovations is the Silent Hunter, a 30 to 100kW laser weapon based on vehicles with a range of 4 kilometers, capable of cutting 5 mm thick steel at a distance of one kilometer. This system was first used at the G20 Summit in Hangzhou as a means of protection.
Also noteworthy are innovations such as individual laser weapons, which are laser guns that blind enemy combatants or their electro-optical devices. Within this category are the BBQ-905 and WJG-2002 dazzling laser rifles, and the PY132A and PY131A blinding laser weapon.
Little is known about the level of capabilities related to Russia's laser technology. However, in December last year, a representative of the Russian Ministry of Defense, Krasnaya Zvezda, referred to the Peresvet laser system, which is part of the country's ongoing military modernization program. The objectives are very clear, shooting down hostile missiles and aircraft, and blinding the enemy's system.
Presumably, Russia possesses an extensiveresearch field In this subject, as its policy and behaviour relating to guns has been consistent skill and rivalry with the United States.
Germany's bet on laser technology is the Rheinmetall laser weapons demonstrator, which has 50kW of power and is the successor to the latest 10kW version. This system was designed for air defense, asymmetric warfare, and C-RAM operations. The Rheinmetall laser is composed of two laser modules mounted on Oerlikon Revolver Gun air defense turrets. He managed to arrive at a destructive 50kW laser by combining Rheinmetall's beam overlay technology to focus a 30kW laser and a 20kW laser in the same location.
The Future of Laser Weapons
When talking about laser weapons, the first thing to consider is the tremendous impact that this technology will have in military terms, which will make it decisive on the battlefield. In fact, many other countries that have a constantly modernizing army have implemented this system: this is the case of France in the Rafale F3-R aircraft; the United Kingdom with the high-energy laser Dragonfire, or even Israel, which in the face of the growing threat of missiles has accelerated the development of this technology.
Today, many ships, aircraft, and land vehicles are being designed and assembled in such a way that they can accommodate the installation of laser weapons. Continuous improvements are being made to create greater range ranges, increase energy, and perform adaptive beams. It can be said, then, that the time for laser weapons has finally arrived.
With the development From this technology, military equipment such as ICBM missiles or UAVs, mainly, could cease to make sense, since laser weapons are capable of intercepting and shooting down these missiles, without causing collateral damage. In the end, launching the ICBM would be a waste of energy, ammunition, and money. In this way, the nuclear threat will have to turn to other possibilities, and laser weapons will most likely be the new emphasis of the armed forces.
In addition, it is important to highlight the fact that this military innovation drives international security towards defense, rather than offensive actions. For this reason, laser weapons would not nullify tensions in the international sphere, but they could somehow diminish the chances of a military confrontation.
The meeting COP24 made progress on regulating the Paris agreement , but "carbon markets" remained blocked.
Mobilisations for governments to take more drastic action on climate change can make us forget that many countries are taking real steps to reduce greenhouse gases. Although international summits often fall short of expectations, climate agreements are gradually making headway. Here are the results of the last such summit: a small step, admittedly, but a step forward.
Plenary session of COP24, held in December in Katowice (Poland) [COP24].
article / Sandra Redondo
The climate summit (also known as COP: Conference of the Parties) is a global lecture prepared by the United Nations, where measures and actions related to climate policy are negotiated. The last one, dubbed COP24, took place from 2 to 14 December 2018, in the Polish city of Katowice. It was attended by around 3,000 delegates from 197 countries that are party to the United Nations Convention on Climate Change framework . Among them were politicians, representatives of non-governmental organisations, members of the academic community and the business sector.
The first COP took place in 1995, and since then these summits have led to the creation of the Kyotoprotocol (COP3, 1997) and the Parisagreement (COP21, 2015), among other mechanisms for international action. The main goal of the quotation in Katowice was to find a way to implement the 2015 Paris agreement , i.e. to implement cuts in pollutant emissions to avoid an increase in global warming. COP24 was the last summit before 2020, when the Paris agreement will enter into force.
goal The 2015 Paris Agreement agreement was signed by 194 countries with the aim of preventing pollutant emissions, which cause the greenhouse effect, from increasing the planet's temperature above two degrees Celsius Degrees compared to pre-industrial levels. Degrees The international community is calling for a concerted effort to ensure that the temperature increase does not exceed 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels. The summit aimed to create a clear, concrete and common outline to be followed by all countries in order to make agreement a reality.
One of the challenges in achieving this goal lies in establishing a balance that allows all nations to participate in this struggle, but taking into account the reality of each one of them: the different technological and financial capacities, as well as the circumstances of vulnerability and historical contamination. As countries with great differences among them are involved, the task of reaching consensus is understandably difficult. This was one of the measures intended to be implemented from the Paris agreement , in which governments pledged to help countries at development to achieve greater and more permanent adaptation.
In the words of Patricia Espinosa, UN Climate Change Executive administrative assistant , in addition to measures to make the Paris agreement effective, it is important to "promote a cultural change in the ways our societies produce and consume in order to rethink our models of development".
Wang Yi, China's foreign minister, said that his country reaffirms that only a joint work among all countries will provide an effective solution in the fight against climate change.
At these summits, agreements must be accepted by all participating states, which can cause negotiations to drag on. This is what happened at COP24. Negotiations were scheduled to end on Friday, but dragged on until the final agreement was reached the following day. The final text, C by all countries in attendance, turned out to be less ambitious than expected, especially on reference letter on greenhouse gas emission cuts.
Despite the declarations of willingness of some countries, certain tensions were inevitable in the negotiations, especially when it came to the assumption that more ambition is needed in this fight. On the one side was the conservative side, with countries such as the United States (which is one of the countries that contributes the most CO2 per capita to global warming) and Saudi Arabia among others. On the other side were the European Union and other states, some of them island states, threatened by rising sea levels, which will continue to rise as a result of rising global temperatures.
Another cause of delay was a demand from Turkey at the last minute to improve financing conditions. With regard to financing, the final agreement acknowledges that more resources need to be devoted to this fight, particularly to the reduction of greenhouse gases.
report of the International Panel on Change
In addition to the measures and cuts that were agreed at this summit, a declaration was to be made with the conclusions of the experts'report group Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), which would warn that the world does not have much time left to avoid the worst consequences of climate change.
This report, which was one of the big battles of the summit, details what will happen if the global temperature rises 1.5 Degrees centigrade above pre-industrial levels. Currently the temperature is one Degree above pre-industrial levels. Despite the fact that it should have been considered of great importance by all countries, given that these are facts that affect the world, there were countries such as Russia, Kuwait, the United States and Saudi Arabia, which tried to play down its importance and raised doubts about the veracity of the conclusions of the report, while other states defended the unquestionability of the conclusions. A common characteristic of these opposing countries is that they are the world's major oil producers.
The report of the International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), presented at COP24, indicates that, if no change continues, between 2030 and 2050, these will be the consequences:
-Increase in flood risk from 100% (at 1.5°C) to 170% (at 2°C).
-If we exceed 1.5°C, more than 400 million people living in cities will be exposed to extreme droughts by the end of the century.
Arctic ice will decrease so much that there will be an ice-free summer at least once every 10 years.
-150 million deaths could be avoided by limiting this 1.5°C temperature rise.
-Nearly 50 million people could be affected by a sea level rise by 2100 if the temperature increase exceeds 1.5°C.
-Corals would be among the worst affected, as they would all be lost by 2100 if the 1.5°C rise is exceeded due to rising ocean acidity. Reaching 1.5°C would result in the loss of 70% of them.
According to calculations also made by the IPCC, CO2 emissions will have to fall by 45% by 2030 to limit warming to 1.5 Degrees. In addition, "carbon neutrality" must be achieved by 2050, i.e. to start having negative emissions, i.e. to stop emitting more CO2 than is removed from the atmosphere. The longer it takes to implement these measures, the less time we will have before the negative consequences affect us all, and may even become irreversible. With each passing year, not only are greenhouse gas emissions not being reduced, but they are increasing. That is why now is the time to act.
As a conclusion of the IPCC's report it should be clear that in order to avoid an increase above 1.5 Degrees it was necessary to cut current emissions by 45%. However, due to the disagreement of several states with this report, and the fear of the failure of the summit, these cuts were omitted from the final agreement . This delay in taking drastic action only reduces the time we have to save our planet, risking being too late to avoid the worst consequences.
At meeting in Katowice it was possible to reach consensus on the regulation of the Paris measures agreement , which is already a great achievement, but the agreement came at the cost of setting aside carbon markets, i.e. the set of carbon trading mechanisms that allow countries that emit more greenhouse gases to buy emission rights from those countries that do comply with the targets and emit gases below the established limit. This section blocked the negotiation of other issues for hours, as several countries that benefit from the current status, such as Brazil, opposed modifications. Finally, it was decided to postpone the negotiations until the COP25 meeting next year in Chile.
The common set of rules for all countries allows them to present their progress in the fight against climate change in the same way. We have to remember that the problem after agreement in Paris was that each country decided to present the data pledge cuts in a different way. For this reason, a agreement to unify rules and criteria in a common way is a breakthrough. These transparency rules are particularly important, as they will make it possible to analyse the progress of what has been proposed at each point in time, and this will make it possible to analyse the targets achieved and the need for further action. For example, among the data that all countries are required to include in their reports are the sectors included in their targets, gas emissions and the year of reference letter against which they will measure the process.
Although some are disappointed that they expected more results than were achieved, the mere fact that agreement was reached among all the participating countries must be considered a success.
We must bear in mind that some of the participating states that showed less interest and put less effort into the negotiations for this fight, and even raised obstacles in the negotiations, are very important countries in the international sphere, with great economic and political power. For this reason, we should consider the agreement reached as a further step towards raising awareness of the fight against climate change. A small step, but a step forward.
▲ U.S.-Mexico border at Anapra, outside Ciudad Juárez [Dicklyon].
ANALYSIS / Túlio Dias de Assis and Elena López-Doriga
With a vote of 152 countries in favor, five against and twelve abstentions (1), the United Nations General Assembly approved last December 19 the project resolution ratifying the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration, agreement signed a few days earlier in the Moroccan city of Marrakech. This is the first international pact, under the auspices of the UN, aimed at addressing migration at the global level. While it is not a binding agreement , it is intended to reiterate important principles on the protection of the human rights of migrants in a universal and unified manner, as it is implemented by the UN General Assembly.
Despite the positive aspect of reaching a broad consensus, many countries abstained from voting or positioned themselves directly against the pact, generating uncertainty as to its effectiveness. Although the long-awaited signature was eventually carried out in Marrakech, in the end there were far fewer signatories than expected during the negotiations. Why this rejection by some countries? And the neutrality or indifference of others? Why the multiple debates that have taken place in various parliamentary chambers around the world in relation to the pact? These are some of the questions that will be addressed in this analysis.
Before addressing the covenant itself, it is important to differentiate between the concepts of "migrant" and "refugee". A migrant is defined as a person who arrives in a country or region other than his or her place of origin to settle there temporarily or permanently, often for economic reasons and generally with the goal aim of improving his or her standard of living. While the concept of refugee makes reference letter to people fleeing armed conflict, violence or persecution and are therefore forced to leave their home country to ensure their own safety. The reasons for persecution can be of many different types: ethnic, religious, gender, sexual orientation, among others. In all of them, these causes have given rise to well-founded fears for their lives, which, after due process, make them "refugees" in the eyes of the international community.
It should be noted that this covenant deals only with the rights of migrants, since for refugees there is already the binding historical reference of the 1951 Convention relating to the Status of Refugees and its 1967 amendmentprotocol , both signed and ratified by a large majority of UN member states. In addition, it should be mentioned that, simultaneously with the elaboration of the migration pact, a similar non-binding pact on refugee issues was also drawn up. This pact was supported by a large majority of States, with only two votes against (USA and Hungary) and three abstentions (Dominican Republic, Libya and Eritrea). Therefore, it could be concluded that at least in subject of refugees most countries do not seem to have any problem; as far as migrants are concerned, the opinion seems to change quite a lot.
The origins of the text date back to the 2016 New York Declaration on the Rights of Migrants and Refugees, which proposed the elaboration of both covenants - on the one hand the one concerning refugees, and on the other hand, the one on migration - as a further initiative of the implementation of the diary 2030. Since then, both documents were gradually elaborated until the text of the one that concerns us was finalized in July 2018.
The document, of a non-binding nature, consists of several parts. The first, commonly referred to as the "Chapeau", is simply a statement of shared values that all States in the international community are supposed to possess. It is followed by a list of 23 objectives, mainly at subject of international cooperation, largely through the International Organization for Migration (IOM), a subsidiary body of the United Nations. Finally, the text explains how the periodic review of the progress of the signatory States with regard to the 23 objectives is to be carried out.
The most controversial part throughout and after the negotiations is the Chapeau, especially for equating the rights of migrants and refugees. The document as a whole is also criticized for not clearly distinguishing the rights of regular migrants from those of irregular migrants. Finally, another highly controversial measure was the call for signatory countries to facilitate a greater issue of visas.
Other important points of the text attracted substantial support agreement, although they were not spared the criticism of the more conservative governments: among them the guarantee of good conditions and care for migrants in cases of deportation, the principle of non-refoulement applied to migrant deportations (the non-refoulement of migrants to conflict zones), the granting of social rights to migrants in the countries where they are, the creation of a better network of international cooperation in subject of migrants under the administration of the IOM, as well as the creation of measures to combat discrimination against migrants.
During the negotiations only two countries explicitly showed an aversion to treaty-making. Sharing the position of Orbán's Hungary was Trump's USA, which did not even bother to participate in the negotiations. The then US ambassador to the UN, Nikki Haley, took a strong stand against the agreement. "The U.S. prides itself on its migratory origins, but it will be the Americans themselves who will decide how to control their borders and who can enter," Haley declared, emphasizing the U.S. interest in making its national sovereignty prevail. The US ended up not signing the document.
In addition to the reasons provided by the Trump Administration, the loss of IOM leadership by the US to Portugal's António Vitorino candidate - and thus the loss of control over the implementation of the pact - may also have played a role. Perhaps not so much in the primary decision not to participate in the negotiations of the pact, as in the final attitude of not signing it. Likewise, it is striking that several countries that at first seemed to support the pact ended up withdrawing, as in the case of Brazil after Jair Bolsonaro's inauguration, or not signing, such as Chile or the Dominican Republic, which had not initially opposed the proposal. This lack of adhesion would be justified, according to some of the negotiators, by the persuasion attempts of US diplomats, although this US effort does not seem to have been limited to the Latin American sphere. Similarly, it is worth mentioning that the decision of the Dominican delegation was also largely influenced by internal pressures from some groups in the legislature.
"Hungary could never accept such a partisan, biased and pro-migration document. Migration is a dangerous phenomenon". So began the speech of Hungarian Foreign Minister Péter Szijjaártó during the celebration of the end of the pact negotiations on July 13. Hungary, together with the USA, was one of the few countries that opposed the proposal from the beginning, but the Magyar representation, in contrast to the US, did take part in the negotiations. The fact that the Magyar representation took such a different position from the outset compared to the other EU member states meant that the seat assigned to the European diplomatic corps was empty during the entire negotiations.
However, Hungary was not the only European country to take such a radical position on agreement. It is worth noting that, once the negotiations were over, along with Hungary there were four other countries in the General Assembly opposed to the pact: Poland, the USA, the Czech Republic and Israel. In addition, twelve more abstained, including several EU members, such as Austria, Bulgaria, Italy, Latvia and Romania, while Slovakia absented itself from the vote.
In several of these countries there was a bitter parliamentary discussion . In Belgium, which eventually accepted the text, Prime Minister Charles Michel lost his coalition government for having signed the pact, as the New Flemish Alliance, his main ally in the Executive, refused to ratify the document. In the Bundestag there was also some controversy caused by Alternative für Deutschland and some CDU members, although the adoption was finally approved after a vote in which a majority of 372 in favor, against 153 votes against and 141 abstentions, ended up approving the measure. In Latvia, the Riga parliament clearly rejected the agreement, as did the governments of Bulgaria, Austria, Poland, the Czech Republic and Slovakia. Italy and Switzerland did not accept the pact at first, but the Executives of both states have referred the decision to their respective parliaments for final say. In the rest of Europe, the pact was accepted without major problems, despite the fact that in almost all national parliaments, far-right or right-wing conservative parliamentary groups raised objections.
China, Russia and others
The positions of other countries should also be highlighted. Australia was the first to withdraw its support for the pact after the negotiations; it justified its exit by stating that its current system of border protection is totally incompatible with some parts of the pact, a security invocation also used by Israel. China and Russia ended up signing the pact, but reiterated their refusal to comply with several of the objectives. Finally, practically all the countries of Africa and the Middle East supported the initiative, without raising any particular resistance, probably due to the fact that these are regions where the most significant migratory flows originate.
BAD FOR THE EU AND FOR THE UN
At final, the difficulty of a global migration pact lies in the concern with which many migrant-receiving countries view these movements of people. The reluctance of European countries is largely due to the migratory crisis in the Mediterranean, caused by the various conflicts in the Maghreb and the Middle East; in the case of the United States, it would be motivated by the migratory flows to its border with Mexico from Central and South America. In general, all the countries that resisted the adoption of agreement have in recent years been destination points for massive immigration, against which they have established strict border controls; in these societies the civil service examination to such an open-minded proposal as the one promoted by the United Nations, despite not being binding, has been seen as normal.
On the European scene, the different positions taken by the EU member states could be a bad sign for European integration, as once again the European External Action Service seems to have failed to create a common position for the EU. The fact that European representation was not present from the outset, due to Hungary's initial unwillingness to change its position, calls into question the common diplomatic service. Moreover, the initial common position that the other 27 EU states seemed to have, apart from the Magyar position, completely vanished at the end of the process, as several of them ended up dissociating themselves from agreement. This marked a clear division within the EU on migration, an issue on which there are already quite a few open debates in the European institutions.
In general, despite the large issue of signatory countries, taking into account all the civil service examination created and the political crises that occurred in some countries, the initiative on migration could be classified as of doubtful effectiveness, and in some aspects even as a failure on the part of the UN. It is evident that the United Nations seems to have lost some of its ability to promote its global diary , as it used to do until a decade ago. Probably ten years ago, the West would have unanimously accepted the migration proposals of University Secretary; today, however, there is a greater division among Western countries, as well as within their own societies, among which there is skepticism towards the organization itself.
After all, it is clear that among the countries that have opposed a global migration pact, a certain alignment against the idealistic approach is beginning to be noticed at International Office, while at the same time we see an enhancement of the attitude known as realist: just look at Trump's USA, Salvini's Italy, Orbán's Hungary, Bolsonaro's Brazil and Netanyahu's Israel, to cite the most emblematic cases.
In the future, the UN will probably have to adapt its projects to the new international political reality if it hopes to maintain its influence among its member states. Will the UN be able to adapt to this new wave of realist conservatism? Undoubtedly, interesting times await us for the next decade on the international scene...
(1) Against: Czech Republic, Hungary, Israel, Poland, Poland, United States. Abstaining: Algeria, Australia, Austria, Bulgaria, Chile, Chile, Italy, Latvia, Libya, Liechtenstein, Romania, Singapore and Switzerland.
[Josep Piqué. The world that is coming to us. Challenges, Challenges and Expectations of the 21st Century: A Post-Western World with Western Values? Deusto. Barcelona, 2018. 254 pp.]
review / Ignacio Yárnoz
Europe may lose relative economic weight or, worse, demographic weight and competitiveness, putting the sustainability of its welfare state at risk. It may become less and less relevant on the global geopolitical stage and move away from the planet's new center of gravity. However, it remains an indisputable pole of attraction for the rest of humanity due to its peace, democracy, freedom, gender equality and opportunities, tolerance and respect. This is what the author Josep Piqué wants to convey to us in The World That Comes to Us. We are talking about an economist, businessman and political leader – head of several ministries, including Foreign Affairs, during the government of José María Aznar – who has experienced first-hand the transition from a Eurocentric world to one that looks more to a thriving Asia.
The work turns out to be a good geopolitical analysis of the world, in which a fragmented European Union, a very thriving China, a Russia nostalgic for its imperial past, a Middle East divided in wars between irreconcilable factions and an Anglo-Saxon world withdrawn into itself stand out. I divide it into different chapters depending on the area geographically, the book takes an in-depth look at each and every topic.
First of all, the author emphasizes the status that the Anglo-Saxon world is experiencing, especially the United States and the United Kingdom, countries that have renounced their world hegemony for the sake of a retreat into themselves. In the case of the United Kingdom, we talk about the divorce from the European Union, and in the case of the United States, we talk about President Donald Trump's policies, such as the withdrawal of the TPP (Trans Pacific Partnership) with Japan, Chile, Canada, Australia, Brunei, New Zealand, Mexico, Peru, Malaysia, Vietnam and Singapore. Paradoxically, in the face of the attitude of these two actors, there is the rise as a power of a China that no longer dissembles in its actions, that no longer wants to be that silent power that Deng Xiaoping formulated.
Russia and its actions abroad are also subject to analysis from different perspectives, but mainly in light of Russia's obsession with its security. As the author argues, it is a state that is very sensitive to its borders and tries to keep the enemy poles as far apart as possible, which implies a policy of influence in the states bordering its border. This explains their reactions to the change of sides of the Eastern European countries and their gradual incorporation into the European Union or NATO. Nor can we forget the topic of gas, the implications of the melting of the Arctic, the oil deposits in the Caspian Sea or other issues that the author reviews.
If we look at the picture in the Middle East, the status It does not seem to be reaching a lasting peace. Neither in the panorama of the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, nor in the different proxy wars between Iran and Saudi Arabia, not to mention the failure of the different Arab Springs. This status It leads the author to analyze in historical perspective how all this has happened. On the other hand, it analyzes the complexity of the different intersecting interests between Turkey, Syria, Russia, Saudi Arabia and Iran that complete the chessboard represented by the Middle East.
Finally, we must not forget the chapter that Josep Piqué reservation for your thesis at the beginning of this article. article: the future of the European Union. As he himself points out, Europe represents the neo-Western synthesis in a post-Western world. However, you need to realize this potential and benefit from it. As Piqué argues, the attractiveness of the European Union as much as project inclusive as well as the liberal and democratic values it represents must be a card that the EU must play more in its favour. However, it also faces challenges such as the rise of nationalism and anti-Europeanism, Russian interference in internal affairs and the lack of credibility of the European institutions. All of this in the framework of the severe economic recession of 2007, which the author also analyzes as a good economist of degree program. Finally, we must not forget some final notes dedicated to the implications of new technologies, Latin America and the opportunities that Spain has.
All of this together represents a complete journey through the world of geostrategy – in the review of the regions of the planet, only one is missing. accredited specialization to Africa – which details all the keys that a person with an interest in international relations should take into account when analysing current affairs.
COMMENTARY / Naiara Goñi
The dazzle of a few years ago by the enormous possibilities of big data, when the mainstream media echoed its extreme usefulness for the provision of services in a democratic society, as long as it was in good hands, has given way in a short time to a generalized pessimism, fueled by the increase in cyberattacks on companies and States and a greater threat to the privacy and freedoms of citizens.
In 2010, The Economist magazine published a special report graduate "Data, data everywhere" welcoming the era of a new revolution, this time not based on steam or chip, but on data. "The effect is felt everywhere, from business to science, from governments to the arts. Computer scientists and engineers have coined a new term for the phenomenon: 'big data.'"
The dangers to privacy and freedoms posed by the storage of enormous information about each of the individuals in a society were already pointed out, but then the possibilities that opened up weighed more. From the field of cybersecurity, which has had a development Parallel to that of big data, with which it is closely related, Henry Kissinger was already warning at that moment of optimism that the future would not be placid.
In his book World Order (2014),1 the experienced American politician and diplomat pointed to the risk that the development of this new technology meant for international stability. Although he was not the only voice to be raised early on this matter, Kissinger's authority in the field of diplomacy allows us to use him here as a reference letter. If Zhou Enlai said that diplomacy is a war continued by other means, today we can say the same about cyberwar.
In the chapter graduate "Technology, balance, and human consciousness," Kissinger notes that the backbone of the concept of cybersecurity is technology. It emphasizes the fact that in the past, cybernetics were an element that could not be controlled in its entirety, and therefore became a complement in war situations. Today, however, it has established itself as a factor to be taken into account, thus altering the capacities of the actors involved in the world order. Kissinger asserts that the greater or lesser stability of the world will depend on who develops this technology and for what purposes
It is therefore necessary to inquire into the theoretical and ethical limits of this development technological. In fact, Kissinger states that "the penetration of communications in network in the social, financial, industrial and military sectors (...) anticipating most rules and regulations (...) it has created that state of nature with which philosophers speculated."
Kissinger takes a closer look at the notion of cybersecurity, mentioning that the technological revolution has brought about two different types of response. On the one hand, democratic countries allow this revolution. Conversely, countries with totalitarian regimes tend to dominate or impose themselves on it.
Although, as has been said, access to data In Kissinger's words, one can sense a certain alarm and concern, which has only recently been accentuated. In recent months, there have been numerous international examples of disruptive hacking, cyberespionage against companies or political formations, and cyber-interference in electoral campaigns.
In its 2018 edition, the report Cyber Threats and Trends by the National Cryptologic Center (CNN) indicates that "state actors – analogous to criminal organizations – are in a permanent search for new methods that allow them to infiltrate networks without being detected."
There have been many cases of cyberespionage attempts by non-democratic governments. In China, for example, a new search engine online: "Dragonfly". This tool it will allow the Chinese government to exercise greater censorship and control, as it claimed one publishing house of The New York Times.
However, the CCN points out that the forecast in democratic countries is not much more hopeful: "Over the next period, experts expect a growth in cyber espionage due to geopolitical triggers or economic sanctions, but also, due to the strategic objectives of nations."
The only possible way to control this phenomenon is clear and strict legislation, both internationally and by individual States. However, we must note that this is a reality that is advancing at a much faster speed than legislation, and that it does so without consensus and definitions.
1. Kissinger, H. (2014). World Order. New York: Penguin Press
[Robert Kagan, The Jungle Grows Back. America and Our Imperiled World. Alfred A. Knoff. New York, 2018. 179 p.]
review / Emili J. Blasco
At this point in the century, it is already clear that the consecration of the liberal system in the world, after the breakup of the communist bloc at the end of the Cold War, is not something that will happen inexorably, as was thought. It's not even likely. The divergent models of China and Russia are gaining traction. Democracy is in retreat, even in Western societies themselves.
It is the jungle that grows again where a garden had been extended. This is the image that Robert Kagan uses in his new book to warn about the desirability of the United States not shirking its responsibility to lead the effort to preserve the liberal world order. For Kagan, the liberal system "was never a natural phenomenon," but a "great historical aberration." "It has been an anomaly in the history of human existence. The liberal world order is fragile and not permanent. Like a garden, it is always besieged by the natural forces of history, the jungle, whose vines and weeds constantly threaten to cover it," he says. It is an "artificial creation subject to the forces of geopolitical inertia," so that the question "is not what will bring down the liberal order, but what can sustain it."
Kagan is outlived in the media by the label He is a neoconservative, although his positions are in the central current of American Republicanism (majority for decades, until the rise of Donald Trump; in fact, in the 2016 campaign Kagan supported Hillary Clinton) and his work is developed at the rather Democratic Brookings Institution. He does defend clear U.S. leadership in the world, but not out of self-assertion, but as the only way for the liberal international order to be preserved. It is not that, by sponsoring it, the United States has acted disinterestedly, because as one of its builders, Secretary of State Dean Acheson, said, in order to protect the "American experiment in life" it was necessary to create "an environment of freedom" in the world. But the other Western countries, and others where the regime of freedoms of democratic societies has also been extended, have also benefited.
The thesis Kagan's central point is that, although there was America's own interest in creating the international architecture that ordered the world after World War II, it benefited many other countries and guaranteed the victory of free societies over communism. Crucial to this, according to Kagan, is that while Washington at times acted against the values it preached, it generally played by certain rules.
Thus, the U.S. "did not exploit the system it dominated to gain lasting economic advantages at the expense of the other powers of order. Put simply: he could not use his military dominance to win the economic competition against other members of the order, nor could he treat the competition as zero-sum and insist on always winning. It's true that the U.S. benefited from being the main player both economically and militarily, "but an element of core topic to hold the international order together was the perception of the other powers that they had reasonable opportunities to succeed economically and even sometimes surpass the United States, as Japan, Germany, and other nations did at various times."
Kagan admits that Washington's willingness to engage in large doses of fairplay on the economic plane "did not extend to all areas, particularly not to strategic issues." In these, "order was not always based on rules, because when the United States deemed it necessary, rightly or wrongly, it violated the rules, including those it claimed to defend, either by carrying out military interventions without UN authorization, as it did on numerous occasions during the Cold War, or by engaging in covert activities that had no international backing."
It has been an order that, in order to function, "had to enjoy a certain Degree of voluntary acceptance by its members, not to be a competition of all against all, but a community of like-minded nations acting together to preserve a system from which all could benefit." "Order was kept in place because the other members viewed U.S. hegemony as relatively benign and superior to other alternatives." test This is why the countries of Western Europe trusted Washington despite its overwhelming military superiority. "In the end, even if it didn't always do so for idealistic reasons, the United States would end up creating a world unusually conducive to the spread of democracy."
Kagan disagrees with the view that after the dissolution of the USSR, the planet entered a "new world order." In his view, what was called the "unipolar moment" did not actually change the assumptions of the order established at the end of World War II. That is why it made no sense that, with the fall of the Berlin Wall, the world was thought to be entering a new era of unstoppable peace and prosperity, and that this made America's role as a gardener unnecessary. The withdrawal from the world carried out by Trump and initiated by Obama (Kagan already in 2012 published The World America Made, in defense of American involvement in the world), would be allowing the return of the chaotic vegetation of the jungle.
The Jungle Grows Back is in the format of a small book, typical of a essay It is a restrained film that aspires to convey some fundamental ideas without wanting to overwhelm the reader. Despite pointing out the dangers of the liberal order, and noting that the United States is in retreat, the book offers an optimistic message: "This is a pessimistic view of human existence, but it is not a fatalistic view. Nothing is determined, neither the triumph of liberalism nor its defeat."
[Pedro Baños, The World Domain. Elements of power and geopolitical keys. Ariel. Barcelona, 2018. 366 p.]
review / Manuel Lamela
If your previous submission, The Keys to World Domination, served as a guide to introduce us to the vast world of geopolitics and international relations, in his new work, Colonel Pedro Baños Bajo, unveils us and gives us a glimpse of the sample the key elements and instruments for world domination and how these are used by the various actors in their constant struggle for power on a global scale. We are on the verge of a paradigm shift on the international scene, and this process, as the author explains, will be led by demography and technology.
In his business In order to democratize geopolitics, Pedro Baños uses clear and precise language to facilitate the understanding of the work. There will be numerous illustrations present in the book that will be accompanied by brief explanations to get a broader vision of the topic to be treated.
The Elements of World Power is the name given to the first half of the book, it is divided into nine different parts that according to the author are key when it comes to understanding the global power game. In this first half, issues of rigorous relevance and tremendously important on the international scene will be discussed. From the hybrid threat, which represents a new way of waging war, to the role of intelligence services today, to the transcendental importance of natural resources and demographics. It is certainly a fairly comprehensive analysis for those looking for a brief explanation of the greatest challenges that threaten to destabilize our current social order. It is true that some of the explanations can be defined as simple, but this does not have to be understood as a pejorative characteristic. The author's ability to synthesize extremely complex issues can encourage the reader's curiosity and make the leap to other great works where they can delve into more specific topics.
In the second part of the book we find a more concrete analysis in which the author focuses on only two factors: technology and demographics. The population imbalance, the large migratory flows and what some call the fourth industrial revolution are some of the issues that Colonel Baños highlights in his analysis. In the author's opinion, the transformations to which these two elements will be exposed will mark the course of humanity in the coming years. In this more incisive study, the author sample how vulnerable human society is to the future changes that are to come and how this alleged weakness will make conflicts difficult to avoid in the near future. Pedro Baños argues that despite the belief we have of living in a perfectly organized and structured society, the reality is far from the latter, since it is a small group The human being charged with directing and leading the destiny of all humanity as a whole.
Despite distilling a certain pessimism throughout the work, Pedro Baños decides to conclude his analysis with a message of hope, advocating for a united humanity. manager and in solidarity with their environment.