E’ sempre più inevitabile che, nell’assenza della politica (ancora più evidente nell’imperare della de-generazione partitica), la megacrisi diventi ingovernabile. E questo rappresenta un rischio evidente, conclamato, un pericolo strategico.
Crediamo nell’urgenza di un progetto di civiltà e, dunque, nella necessità di un realismo progettuale. Qui non giudichiamo le posizioni di parte, tutte tarate sulla parte di elettorato che si intende rappresentare. Notiamo, però, quanto ormai la situazione che viviamo sfugga ai radar della partitica, incapace di cogliere il vincolo strategico tra la globalità delle dinamiche storiche e le condizioni di vita delle persone. Quel terreno, di naturale elezione della politica, è pochissimo frequentato: nessuno sembra ri-flettersi nel valore decisivo di una nuova mediazione tra globale e locale: ciò che abbiamo chiamato glocale.
La megacrisi è assai potente e non chiede permesso. Si sprecano e si rincorrono, ormai, le dichiarazioni retoriche che, dal caro bollette alla siccità, disegnano scenari più o meno drammatici per i tempi a venire. Molto meno popolato, invece, è il coté politico, di quanti colgono che il tema è rappresentato dal futuro delle società aperte, sempre più messe in discussione. E, se si vuole, il tema è il futuro stesso delle democrazie che, con varia intensità, abbiamo esaltato (talvolta dogmatizzandole) nel corso degli ultimi trent’anni della nostra storia.
Ribadiamo ancora una volta quanto i regimi democratici siano del tutto preferibili ai regimi autocratici. Proprio per questa ragione, e considerando le speranze che le democrazie portano dentro, spetta loro un sussulto di responsabilità nella fase storica che viviamo. Responsabilità, lo sottolineiamo ancora, che fa rima con auto-critica. Ci torneremo.
Il vincolo glocale è il “dove” della politica. Diciamo, a vantaggio degli studiosi politici e sociali, che il bacino di utenza della politica per un progetto di civiltà è nel grande mare, in espansione, dell’astensionismo; perché esso, non va mai dimenticato, rappresenta una grande parte di popolazione che, oltre a non sentirsi rappresentata, cammina nella storia alla ricerca di soluzioni che non sa darsi, dentro una megacrisi che l’avvolge e la travolge. Ci vogliono nuovi paradigmi e il lavoro da fare è molto complesso e di lungo respiro: un progetto di civiltà.
Chi si astiene, in democrazia, lancia segnali chiarissimi a una partitica che non sa ascoltarli, capace solo di pensiero lineare, in rincorsa rispetto a una storia che la precede sempre. Oggi, e la discussione è aperta, i sacerdoti della globalizzazione si scontrano con l’altra faccia del loro dogma ma non sembrano avere capacità di lavorare nell’oltre. Nessuno nega, naturalmente, i progressi conseguiti con la globalizzazione ma il problema di quella spinta propulsiva, eccessivamente ottimistica, è nel progressivo svuotamento del “comune”, di quello spazio di relazione che rende coese le società.
Occorre ri-costruire prospettive per i disorientati della storia, persone che sentono il bisogno della politica (non sentendosi rappresentati dalla partitica) ma che non riescono a legare quel bisogno alla concretezza delle loro vite. Tutto questo può/deve ri-nascere a livello di città e di territori, dove si realizza il vincolo glocale (oggi non governato). Si pensi al grande spazio culturale e politico che si apre: la ri-costruzione del “comune glocale”, infatti, è una sfida complessa che riguarda la sostenibilità e la rivoluzione tecnologica ma, prima di tutto, la ri-generazione delle democrazie attraverso un re-investimento strategico (secondo nuovi paradigmi) nelle società aperte.
Siamo convinti di essere arrivati a un punto di svolta. Mentre crediamo che, in questi anni difficili, i sistemi democratici debbano salvaguardare il più possibile la stabilità (per governare al meglio possibile il “mentre” di ciò che accade), altrettanto pensiamo che occorra contemporaneamente cambiare via, e farlo radicalmente.
Il “comune glocale” può essere ri-pensato e ri-costruito solo dentro un serio e informale coinvolgimento di diverse esperienze, sensibilità, competenze. Ciò che può apparire un paradosso è, in realtà, la chiave di volta: il vincolo ci libera ed è nel vincolo che possiamo ri-trovare le condizioni di una libertà responsabile, vera libertà. Il vincolo è fondamento della relazione che, a sua volta, è fondamento del “comune”. Come scrivevamo, non basta più parlare di cambiamento: è il tempo di porre le condizioni per una metamorfosi complessa e complessiva, governandola.
- (Progetto di civiltà) Non basta più parlare di cambiamento
- (Progetto di civiltà) La questione glocale
- (Progetto di civiltà) Luoghi di vita, glocalità e rivoluzione tecnologica
- (Progetto di civiltà) Informalità progettuale e giudizio storico
- (Progetto di civiltà) Le città-laboratorio come vincolo complesso
- (Progetto di civiltà) La politica può rifondarsi nelle città
FROM GLOBAL THINK TANKS – DAILY NEWSLETTER
AROUND THE WORLD
- July 15, 2022. John S. Van Oudenaren, The Jamestown Foundation. For decades, the People’s Republic of China (PRC) has abstained from seeking formal alliances. Chinese leaders often invoke the principle of advancing state-to-state relations through “dialogue rather than confrontation [and] partnerships rather than alliances” (对话不对抗、结伴不结盟, duihua bu duikang, jieban bu jiemeng) (Xinhuanet, June 23; Gov.cn, November 22, 2021). The PRC highlights its multitude of strategic partnerships and lack of official alliances as emblematic of its self-proclaimed anti-hegemonic approach to international relations, which is predicated on inclusivity, mutual respect and “win-win cooperation.” Chinese Communist Party (CCP) propaganda regularly juxtaposes this purportedly positive-sum approach to world politics with its stock depiction of the United States as a decaying but violent empire, which practices a ruthless brand of power politics based on zero-sum thinking. For the CCP, America’s “cold war mentality” manifests in its global military presence and formal security alliances in Europe and Asia, which Beijing characterizes as “closed and exclusive cliques” (PRC Foreign Ministry [FMPRC], April 12; China Brief, October 22, 2021). China’s Shifting Approach to Alliance Politics
China – Pakistan
- July 15, 2022. Syed Fazl-e-Haider, The Jamestown Foundation. On June 10, the Foreign Office in Islamabad received a diplomatic communication from the Pakistani ambassador in Beijing (The News, June 13). China assured Prime Minister (PM) Shehbaz Sharif, who replaced former PM Imran Khan in April, that it is eager to work with the present government (PRC Foreign Ministry [FMPRC], June 17). China also confirmed the rollover of a $2.3 billion loan to Pakistan at a reduced rate, which is a great help to the cash-strapped nation (The Express Tribune, June 22). Furthermore, China agreed to extend additional financial assistance between $2.5 to $2.8 billion, and pledged to support Pakistan’s fragile economy through the multi-billion China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) (Business Standard, June 29). Chinese leadership also urged the present government to reinvigorate CPEC projects, which were neglected under Imran Khan’s government (The News, June 13; Business Recorder, June 15). However, PM Sharif’s government has inherited a plethora of problems and issues plaguing progress and causing delays in the execution of projects that fall under the umbrella of CPEC. Will the China-Pakistan Corridor Get a Boost with a New Government in Islamabad?
- July 15, 2022. Simrit Kaur and Harpreet Kaur, East Asia Forum. Heatwaves in India have become more frequent, prolonged, intense and geographically spread-out. Twelve of the country’s warmest 15 years have been since 2006, with death tolls rising three-fold since the 1950s to over 3000 people. Addressing such natural disasters, including heatwaves, requires a coherent and collaborative policy response by the Indian government. Building a heatwave-resistant India
Islamic State – Africa
- July 15, 2022. Daniele Garofalo, The Jamestown Foundation. Islamic State (IS) propaganda in videos, photos, and editorials since June has increasingly focused on Africa, particularly Nigeria and Islamic State in West Africa (ISWAP). However, its publications have also regularly referred to Mozambique, Congo, and the Sahel. Although it appears that through propaganda and militarily conquests, IS is conquering Africa, which is certainly the organization’s focus at present, in reality, both in Nigeria and elsewhere on the African continent, IS does not have a monopoly. In fact, al-Qaeda’s affiliates remain strong and credible rivals to IS’s expansion. Islamic State Propaganda Renews Focus on Africa, but a “Jihadist Monopoly” Remains Elusive
Islamic State in Khorasan
- July 15, 2022. Lucas Webber, The Jamestown Foundation. On June 18, Islamic State in Khorasan Province (ISKP) militants attacked a Sikh place of worship, or gurdwara, in Kabul, killing two people, although Islamic State (IS) touted a much higher casualty total (The Hindu, June 19). IS formally claimed the operation through its Amaq News Agency and claimed the raid against the “temple for Hindu and Sikh polytheists” was intended to avenge the Prophet Muhammad following recent blasphemous comments made by Indian politicians (Twitter/@Minalami, June 18). These comments about India drew considerable attention. However, there was another angle to the IS media strategy in revealing the attacker as “Abu Muhammad al-Tajiki,” which received much less commentary (NDTV, June 20). Islamic State in Khorasan Province Exploits Tajik Martyrs for Online Recruitment in Central Asia
Pacific Island Nations – China – West
- July 15, 2022. Martin Purbrick, The Jamestown Foundation. In recent years, the People’s Republic of China (PRC) has significantly increased its engagement with the Pacific Island Countries, which has resulted in growing Chinese influence across the region. In response, Australia, the U.S. and allied countries have made efforts to counter these growing inroads. The expanding PRC links to the Pacific Islands have occurred in parallel to declining recognition of the Republic of China (Taiwan) with many countries seduced in to switching diplomatic ties from Taipei to Beijing. In September 2019, the Solomon Islands ended 36 years of recognition of Taiwan and established diplomatic relations with the PRC, a move which was followed days later by Kiribati (Xinhuanet, September 23, 2019; People.cn, September 28, 2019). The Pacific Islands are a key target of the PRC’s ‘One China’ policy as Taiwan retains diplomatic relations with Tuvalu, Nauru, Palau and the Marshall Islands, all of which Beijing is pursuing with offers of economic and security related assistance. Twin Soliloquies in the South Pacific: China and the West Pursue Pacific Island Nations
- July 15, 2022. Neha Ansari, Atlantic Council. On July 7, 2022, Pakistan’s Parliamentary Committee on National Security formally approved the beginning of negotiations between its military and the outlawed terrorist group Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP). Military leadership reportedly warned parliamentarians that the TTP is seeking to join hands with Islamic State-Khorasan Province (IS-K), which would be catastrophic for the country. In this context, argued the military, Pakistan is “compelled” to seek a peace deal with the terrorist group in order to avoid the dire consequences of an impending TTP-IS-K alliance. Pakistan must stop accommodating the Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan
Pakistan – Baluchistan
- July 15, 2022. Kiyya Baloch, The Jamestown Foundation. When the ethnic Baluch separatist insurgent group, Baluch Liberation Army (BLA), claimed responsibility for a female suicide attack by Shari Baloch in the southern port city of Karachi on April 26, it asserted that the attack was against projects launched by Beijing and Islamabad in the restive Baluchistan province under the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) (Terrorism Monitor, May 20). The CPEC is an estimated $62 billion collection of energy and infrastructure projects, which Baluch separatists consider to be exploitative. The BLA further claimed that hundreds of its “highly-trained male and female members” were ready to carry out “harsher” attacks in the future. Pakistani Counter-Insurgency Measures Risk Fueling Further Unrest in Baluchistan Province
Russia – Ukraine – China
- July 15, 2022. The Jamestown Foundation. This is the second part of a two-part article series that addresses both a prominent Russian Federation state disinformation campaign related to the war in Ukraine—namely, that the Russian invasion was justified due to the alleged presence of U.S.-sponsored biological warfare research facilities in Ukraine—as well as the ways in which this conspiracy theory has been supported and amplified by the state-controlled media system of the People’s Republic of China. The first article in this series (Part 1: Accusations Concerning the War in Ukraine), which appeared in the June 17 issue, provided details of this disinformation campaign, as well as examples of how Beijing’s diplomatic and media systems have backed up Russian narratives. This second article seeks to place this coordinated disinformation campaign in broader context—both by providing a historical case study of similar biological warfare disinformation dating back to the Korean War, as well as analyzing Beijing’s contemporary motivations for providing informational support for Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine. Beijing’s Propaganda Support for Russian Biological Warfare Disinformation, Part 2: Historical Context and Contemporary Motivations
- July 16, 2022. Dushni Weerakoon, East Asia Forum. Sri Lanka’s slide into political instability since April 2022 culminated in the resignation of former president Gotabaya Rajapaksa following public protests on 9 July 2022. The government’s policy blunders and resistance to course correction were blamed for unleashing the harshest economic crisis on the Sri Lankan population in recent history. The former president’s resignation paves the way for the formation of an interim all-party government. Sri Lanka’s crisis of legitimacy
- July 15, 2022. Mathis Lohatepanont, East Asia Forum. On 1 June 2022, Chadchart Sittipunt officially assumed office as Governor of Bangkok. In doing so, he became the first figure identified with Thailand’s opposition camp to enter a prominent executive position since the military coup of May 2014. New Bangkok Governor challenges government’s grip on power
USA – Middle East
- July 15, 2022. Daniel B. Shapiro, Barbara Slavin, Ariel Ezrahi, Thomas S. Warrick, Shalom Lipner, Carmiel Arbit, Nadereh Chamlou, Sina Azodi, Mark N. Katz, and Andrew L. Peek, Atlantic Council. This week, from July 13-16, US President Joe Biden is visiting the Middle East. The trip focuses on repairing relationships across the region in an effort to foster regional stability and advance normalization with Israel. Below, Atlantic Council experts react to the trip and what it means for the wider region. Experts react: What’s next for the Middle East after Biden’s big visit?
Defense, Military, Security, Space
- July 15, 2022. Derek Solen, The Jamestown Foundation. It is a truism that organizational culture can be a decisive factor in determining a military’s fate on the battlefield, but its intangibility and qualitative nature make analyzing a military’s culture difficult, particularly from the outside. However, the Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA) recently published several articles reporting instances of successful cultural change in the PLA Air Force (PLAAF). These articles reveal some of the cultural problems that units in the PLAAF had, problems that reduced their combat effectiveness and even defeated the purpose of their training. Nevertheless, given the nature of the medium in which the articles were published, it is likely that they were published to provide other units examples to emulate, so it is also likely that the same cultural problems that were reportedly remedied still exist throughout the PLAAF and the PLA as a whole. PLA Air Force Remedies Self-Defeating Training Culture
- July 15, 2022. Ryan C. Berg, Clara Sophie Cramer, Maxwell Kushnir, Emily Santor, Otto Svendsen, Likai Zhao, CSIS. “The U.S.-Brazil relationship is stronger than ever.” With this decisive statement, the U.S. embassy in Brazil introduced a publicly available fact sheet in 2020 summarizing the key areas of cooperation between the Western Hemisphere’s two most populous countries. The document calls the United States and Brazil “partners for a prosperous hemisphere” and reflects, in part, the unique moment created by the close, personal relationship between former U.S. president Donald Trump and Brazilian president Jair Bolsonaro. The two presidents bonded over their anti-establishment candidacies, creating a close working relationship that promised a breakthrough in U.S.-Brazil ties, which have often suffered from mutual suspicion and hesitancy. A critical milestone in Brazil’s approximation with the United States came in 2019, when Washington designated Brazil a “major non-NATO [North Atlantic Treaty Organization] ally” (MNNA), a status codified in U.S. law that grants foreign partners significant benefits and privileges in the areas of security cooperation and defense. The Future of U.S.-Brazil Security Cooperation: Opportunities Presented by Brazil’s Major Non-NATO Ally Status
- July 15, 2022. Cheng Li, China-US Focus. China’s ambition and achievements in space exploration have received much attention around the world over the past decade. Less noted but perhaps equally remarkable has been the rise of aerospace business executives in the Chinese political leadership. A new term, “the cosmos club” (hangtianxi or yuzhoubang in Chinese), has recently been coined to refer to the distinct cluster of technocrats who have risen through the ranks of China’s space and aviation industries to the national and provincial levels of leadership. The Reshuffling Report
- July 15, 2022. Katherine Walla, Atlantic Council. It’s time for the Netherlands and its European allies and partners to get “European defense in order,” said Dutch Minister of Defense Kajsa Ollongren. Europe ‘must get its act together’ on defense, says Dutch defense minister
- July 16, 2022. US Department of State. The United States welcomes Saudi Arabi’s signing of the Artemis Accords on July 14, affirming its commitment to safe, sustainable, and responsible space exploration. Kingdom of Saudi Arabia Signs the Artemis Accords