Paris nor Brussels! Stop
terrorism! We want to live in peace with all
regardless of their religion, color and origin. Therefore, we condemn any
kind of terrorism!
Ne više Pariz ni Brisel! Stop terorizam!
Mi želimo živjeti u miru sa svim našim
bez obzira koje su vjere, boje kože i porijekla.
Zato mi osuđujemo svaku vrstu terorizma!
Manal Saadi Postgraduate researcher in International Relations and Diplomacy at the Geneva-based UMEF University
doc.dr.Jasna Cosabic professor of IT law and EU law at Banja Luka College,
Bosnia and Herzegovina
Aleksandra Krstic Studied in Belgrade (Political Science) and in Moscow (Plekhanov’s IBS). Currently, a post-doctoral researcher at the Kent University in Brussels (Intl. Relations). Specialist for the
MENA-Balkans frozen and controlled conflicts.
Dr. Swaleha Sindhi is Assistant Professor in the Department of Educational Administration, the Maharaja Sayajirao University of
Baroda, India. Decorated educational practitioner Dr. Sindhi is a frequent columnist on related topics, too. She is the Vice President
of Indian Ocean Comparative Education Society (IOCES). Contact:
It is an Ankara-based
journalist and notable author.
She is engaged with the leading Turkish dailies and weeklies for
nearly three decades as a columnist, intervieweer and editor.
Her words are prolifically published and quoted in Turkish,
French an English.
By İLNUR ÇEVIK Modified from the original: They killed 1 Saddam and created 1,000 others (Daily Sabah)
Aine O’Mahony Aine O'Mahony has a bachelor in Law and Political Science at
the Catholic Institute of Paris and is currently a master's student
of Leiden University in the International Studies programme.Contact:
Elodie Pichon Elodie Pichon has a
bachelor in Law and Political Science at the Catholic Institute of
Paris and is currently doing a MA in Geopolitics, territory and
Security at King's College London. Contact :
a MA candidate of the George
Washington University, Elliott School of International Affairs. Her
research focus is on cross-Pacific security and Asian studies,
particularly on the Sino-U.S. relations and on the foreign policy
and politics of these two.
ALESSANDRO CIPRI Born in Chile and raised in Rome, Alessandro
Cipri has just finished his postgraduate studies at the department
of War Studies of King's College London, graduating with distinction
from the Master's Degree in "Intelligence and International
Security". Having served in the Italian Army's "Alpini" mountain
troops, he has a keen interest in national security, military
strategy, insurgency theory, and terrorism studies. His Master's
dissertation was on the impact of drug trafficking on the evolution
of the Colombian FARC.
Ms. Lingbo ZHAO is a candidate of the Hong Kong Baptist
University, Department of Government and International Studies. Her
research interest includes Sino-world, Asia and cross-Pacific.
Elodie Pichon, Ms. Elodie Pichon, Research Fellow of the IFIMES Institute, DeSSA Department. This native Parisian is a Master in Geopolitics,
Territory and Security from the King’s College, London, UK.
Ambassador Muhamed Sacirbey currently lectures on Digital-Diplomacy. "Mo"
has benefited from a diverse career in investment banking & diplomacy, but
his passion has been the new avenues of communication. He was Bosnia &
Herzegovina's first Ambassador to the United Nations, Agent to the
International Court of Justice, Foreign Minister & Signatory of the Rome
Statute establishing the International Criminal Court. He also played
American football opting for a scholarship to Tulane University in New
Orleans after being admitted to Harvard, oh well!!
Amanda Janoo is an Alternative
Economic Policy Adviser to governments and development
organizations. Graduate from Cambridge University with an MPhil in
Development Studies, Amanda worked at the United Nations Industrial
Development Organization (UNIDO) supporting government's with
evidence-based industrial policy design for inclusive and
sustainable growth. Her research focus is on the relationship
between international trade and employment generation. She has
worked throughout Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa promoting greater
economic self-determination and empowerment.
Michael dr. Logies,
Endy Bayuni The writer, editor-in-chief of
The Jakarta Post, took part
in the Bali Civil Society and Media Forum, organized by the
Institute for Peace and Democracy and the Press Council, on Dec.5-6.
Bellevrat is the WEO Energy Analysts
Kira West Kira West is the WEO Energy Analysts
Victor Davis Hanson— NRO contributor Victor Davis
Hanson is a senior fellow at the Hoover Institution and the author,
most recently, of The Second World Wars: How the First Global
Conflict Was Fought and Won.
Chief Research Fellow at the Primakov Institute of World Economy and
International Relations (Moscow, Russia). In 1989-1991 was a member
of Soviet negotiating team at START-1 negotiations (Defense and
Ingrid Stephanie Noriega
Ingrid Stephanie Noriega is junior specialist in International
Relations, Latina of an immense passion for human rights, democratic
accountability, and conflict resolution studies as it relates to
international development for the Latin America and Middle East –
regions of her professional focus.
Syeda Dhanak Fatima Hashmi
Author is a Foreign Policy Analyst and Research Head
at a think tank based in Islamabad. She has done Master of
Philosophy (M.Phil.) in Governance and Public Policy. Her areas of
research include both regional as well as global issues of
contemporary international relations.
Pia Victoria Poppenreiter Davos: The Other Side of the Mirror
An “inventor, startup guru, conceptualist and CEO” hangs out at the
world’s four-day power lunch
recession of plans and initiatives; systematically ignored calls for a
fiscal and monetary justice for all; €-crisis; Brexit and irredentism in
the UK, Spain, Belgium, France, Denmark and Italy; lasting instability in
the Euro-Med theatre (debt crisis of the Europe’s south – countries
scrutinized and ridiculed under the nickname PIGS, coupled with the failed
states all over the MENA); terrorism; historic low with Russia along with a
historic trans-Atlantic blow with Trump; influx of predominantly Muslim
refugees from Levant in numbers and configurations unprecedented since the
WWII exoduses; consequential growth of far-right parties who – by peddling
reductive messages and comparisons – are exploiting fears of otherness, that
are now amplified with already urging labour and social justice concerns;
generational unemployment and socio-cultural anxieties, in ricochet of the
Sino-US trade wars, while rifting in dilemma to either letting Bolivarism or
supporting Monroeism… The very fundaments of Europe are shaking.
Strikingly, there is a very little public debate enhanced in Europe about
it. What is even more worrying is the fact that any self-assessing
questioning of Europe’s involvement and past policies in the Middle East,
and Europe’s East is simply off-agenda. Immaculacy of Brussels and the
Atlantic-Central Europe-led EU is unquestionable. Corresponding with
realities or complying with a dogma?
* * * *
One of the leading figures of European Renaissance that
grossly inspired European renewal is Dante. Alongside with Petrarca and
Boccaccio, he is considered as one of the three fathers of European
humanism. Hence, Dante puts Prophet Muhamed to the 8thcircle of his famous
Inferno. The only individuals bellow Muhamed were Judas, Brutus, and
Satan. “Islam was seen as the negation of Christianity, as anti-Europe…and
Muhammed as an Antichrist in alliance with the Devil…” as Rana Kabbani noted
in her luminary piece Imperial Fictions.
However, both religions trace their origins back to Abraham. They both lived
in harmony (or at least they successfully cohabitated) for centuries within
the MENA proper, notably in Lebanon, Syria Egypt and Iraq. Why than there
was no harmonious relationship between Christian Europe and the Middle East?
Was Europe opting to demonise the Muslims in order to artificially generate
a homogenous European self? No enemy at gate, no unity at home?
This is a story of the past centuries – one may say. Still, absence of any
self-reflection on the side of the EU towards its policy in the Middle East
today, makes it worth to revisit some of the bleak chapters of European
history, and the genesis of its pre-secular and secular thoughts.
Brussels: Extra Euro-Atlanticum, nulla salus
Europe came to be
known as ‘Christendom’ because its identity was imagined or invented as the
Catholic in contradistinction to the Islamic Middle East and to the Eastern
(authentic, trueor Orthodox) Christianity.1
The Christianity, of course, originated in the Middle
East not in Europe. It was subsequently universalised and, by spreading onto
peripheral world, Europeanised by the Balkan-born Roman Emperor – Constantin
the Great (Edicto de Milan, 313 AD). He himself spent much of his
life on Bosporus and hence, was buried in Asia Minor.
Surely, it was by the legal design of this glorious Emperor (fully backed by
the Empire’s political elite) that the city of Rome was (re)turned into an
administrative periphery, politico-ideological outcast and geostrategic
suburbia (by 324 AD). The official seat of Roman Empire including the Roman
Senate – by yet another historic edict of 330 AD – became Constantin-polis
(Constantinople), and it remained as such until a very end of the Empire, 11
Therefore, the post
Roman/Byzantine inauguration of ‘Christendom’ as a pure western culture
necessitated a sustained intellectual acrobatics – starching the truth away
from an elementary geography and historical evidence. Such an inversion by
which an ideological and geopolitical periphery presents itself as a centre
required considerably emasculation – both, physical coercion and imposed
narrative over the extensive space and time.2
This a ’lacard creation of Catholic Christendom or to say; Western
Ummah, served two vital objectives: domestic and external. Both helped
solidification of the feudal socio-economic and politico-military system,
and based on that of a precolonial European collective identity.
Domestically, it served for a coherent sense of selfhood – us vs. them
paradigm: Unity, oppression and obedience. Extra ecclesiam nulla salus
– no salvation
outside the church, following the old Roman rational ‘no world beyond
Limesline’, or the modern one:
‘no prosperity outside the EU’. Externally, here was found the ‘moral’
narrative – a justifier for the subsequent military voyages and other forms
of organized plunders. Such an image build-up, of course, was coupled with a
coercive societal identity – the ‘Dark ages’ for at home, crusaders for
This is how Europeans started to view the religious conflict as the
identifying attribute of the system’s formation, while elsewhere on the
globe the interethnic and interreligious coexistence was a traditional modus
operandi within and among countries.
By the time of
Renaissance, Catholic Europe came to realize that, in order to effectively
project itself – to physically and/or mentally colonise overseas territories
– it needed either coercion (rarefying and assimilation), labour-camp
detention (slavery) or final solution (physical extermination). These
strategic dilemmas over the instruments to use, influenced and dominated
European debates of the time. It brought about the conception of the ‘noble
savage’ – who could be assimilated, versus the ‘ignoble savage’ who was
destined for either labour detention or final solution. That
coerce-or-exterminate dilemma of ‘soul salvationists’ even culminated within
the pre-Westphalian Christian Ummah. It was best epitomised in the famous
Valladolid controversy of 1550, by which Juan Ginés de Sepúlveda’s notion of
the ignoble savagefaced off against Bartolomé
de Las Casa’s view of the noble savage.
In both cases – the
claim was offered – the Amero/AfroAsian Natives deserve salvation as they
have a ‘strong desire for it’, but the views differed on whether the
Natives’ prone wishes exceeded their mental capacity to receive
Christianity. Hence, the debates – which were the roots and origins of the
later liberal theories as well as the early precursors to the subsequent
regime change, humanitarian interventionand preemptiondoctrines, and to
the (onesided ultimatum of) EU Accession criteria
always presupposed the inferiority (and passivity) of the
remains a constant behaviour in international relations: E.g. views on Libya
differed, as they differ today on Syria. However, what is common to all
views is; nobody consults the local population and considers what they would
like for themselves.3
Legitimizing the imperialism of imagination
In a course of
subsequent centuries, the notion of final solution underwent through a
sophistication, and was eventually replaced by the combination of
cultural conversions/ submissions (induced submissiveness),
politico-military obedience and socio-economic apartheid. A subtle apartheid
(that is easy to deny, but hard to prove) is usually better than the brute
genocide (which is traceable and easily quantifiable). At the peaks of
imperialism a noble-ignoble savagedilemma was embodied in an implicit and explicit racism.
Debate was focused on a question whether the nations’ inferiority can be
remedied through the imperial ‘civilizing’ mission, with social Darwinists
and ‘scientific’ racists being rather pessimistic, but more forthcoming on
central dilemma of liberalism – Is it liberal to impose liberal values on
illiberal societies –
was of course only an innocently looking tip of the large
iceberg, of the tireless othering. This ‘epistemology’ was further
soft-embedded in the so-called Peter Pan theory with a romanticised image of
the Otheras more childishly careless
and helpless, than intentionally cruel and barbaric. Foreign remained
Other, but ‘became’ rather alluring, promiscuous and exotic.
Essentially, the East as a child enveloped in innocence, a derided inferior
who would never grow up. This, of course, gave rise to various binary
categorisations, the us-vs.-them/either-orlistings, in order
to manufacture rift and hence to facilitate a decisive and long-lasting
differentiation between the constructed West and the East.5
The West as a constructed male vs. the East as a constructed female. A
‘mind-oriented’ west vs. a ‘body-oriented’ east. Phallusoid peninsulas and
islands of (Atlantic-Scandinavian) Europe vs. womb-like continental landmass
of Afro-Asia; Erective and explosive vs. reflective and implosive; an
Omnipresent (ever seafaring and trading) extroverted male vs. humble,
handcrafting, waiting female. Masculine, phallusoid, progressively erected
temporal linearity vs. periodic menstrual leakages of femininity in
regressive cycles of stagnation. Clearly, anything beyond that was deemed
ideological, active, polarizing, determined vs. metaphysical, spiritual,
esoteric, atmospheric, inclusive, holistic. No wonder that all
operationalized ideologies originated solely in Europe. What else, since no
one ever, but Asians revealed any significant religion to the world.6Ideology penetrates,
AgitProp – Non-stop
imperial civilizing mission (Expansion is a path to Security) got a
new form, often under the watchful care of ‘Five Eyes’. It became a moral
duty – R2P (Responsibility to Protect), as much as the parental duty
is to raise their infant child. The handsome, masculine and strong Western
Prince Charminghas one duty – to emancipate his Eastern Sleeping
Beauty. Giving a ‘kiss’
meant projecting the
western physical military presence, Christianity and commerce.7Who was/is the
Eastern Sleeping Beauty?
famous 1899 poem, The White’s Man Burden offers some answers while
describing the Eastern peoples as ‘half-devil and half-child’. “The blame of
those ye better / The hate of those ye guard” – Kipling warns and instructs,
he describes and invites. In his classic novel of 1847, Tancred – The New
Crusade, much celebrated British Prime Minister Benjamin Disraeli claims
“A Saxon race, protected by an insular position, has stamped its diligent
and methodic character of the century. And when a superior race, with a
superior idea to Work and Order, advances, its state will be progressive…All
is race!”8Quite an
intellectual acrobatics for Disraeli himself, who was neither Saxonic nor
Over the period, western Catholic missionaries constituted one of the most
powerful and influential lobbying voices for this civilizing mission. It was
of course weaponisation of religion, a notorious misuse for ideological
purposes. Same like today, fanatics then and there, were identified,
manipulated and further radicalised, to say ’inspired’. In that time Europe,
they would have usually got hired as the AGITPROP – an Ideological police by
the predatory elites which hid behind the Feudal European states.
justifications were looked upon in any Biblical narrative. E.g. the
re-invoking the Genesis story of Noah’s three sons, and interpreting it as
the ‘duty’ of Japheth (Europe) to absorb Shem (Asians) and enslave and
colonise Ham or Canaan (Black Africa and Indianos of America). Amazingly,
according to Genesis ch.9, verse 27: “God shall enlarge Japheth and he shall
dwell in the tents of Shem, and Canaan shall be his servant”.9
(While Europe was to face a holocaust of 30-years War among essentially
Rimo-Catholic Christians, “Asians commercial and cosmopolitan cities formed
a network of hubs spanning numerous multi-ethnic and multilingual empires” –
says Parag Khanna.)
The later Protestant
revival infused the next wave of Christian missionaries to force this
narrative into the matrix of colonisation as ‘wilful’ implants onto the
minds and bodies of overseas peoples. Therefore, James Lorrimer and other
architects of that-time political and international legal order divided the
world in three segments: civilized White, barbarous Yellow and savage Black.
Yellowswere ‘fallen people’, inhabiting a terra infantilis,
bound to civilize (what will later evolve into indirect rule, with a social
apartheid in place). The area occupied by the Blacks, Redbonesand Aborigine
was a ‘borderless space’, terra nulliusjust to conquer and
settle, since the indigenous have no ‘birthright’ to it (meaning: physical
colonisation and direct rule, displacement final solution and genocide).
Even the champion of European rationalism, Max Weber, divinised Europe:
“Protestant Reformation and the Protestant ethic it spurred played a key
role in facilitating the rise of modern industrial society in Western
Europe.” Before him, the world’s most famous egalitarian, Karl Marx – who
sow nations and states not as a statistical reality but as a revolutionary
cause – was not so enthusiastic in preaching the proletarian revolution
beyond the narrow western world. In Marx’s writings, Revolution is reserved
for the advanced peoples (that even excludes the eastern European Slavs),
and is not meant for those civilisationally behind.
Nevertheless, the unfinished business of ‘salvation of
the world’ came back home; to Europe of the 20thcentury. Hitler’s interpretation of it was: civilized
White(Arian) – Central Europe;
Yellows(fated for indirect rule,
with ‘only’ social apartheid in place) – Atlantic and Scandinavian Europe;
Blacks(whose territory is
predestined for a physical colonisation by the superior race upon a decisive
final solution and genocide) – all Slavic states of Eastern and Russophone
Indeed, ever since the 18thcentury on, European notion that ‘civilization’ was the
monopoly of the West, clearly implied that there is no civilization – and
therefore, salvation – outside the western model.11To comply fully with
this new myth, the civilizational late comer from the geographic suburbia –
actually a remote peninsular northerly extension of the huge Asian
continental mass – started calling itself an Old Continent.Historian Toynbee
calls it “a secularized version of the primitive Western Christian
proposition Nemini salus …nisi in Ecclesia.” See for yourself how
much current debates, sparked by the ongoing refugee crisis, follow the
Prof. Anis H Bajrektarevicis chairperson and professor in international law and
global political studies, Vienna, Austria. He has authored six books (for
American and European publishers) and numerous articles on, mainly,
geopolitics energy and technology. Professor is
editor of the NY-based GHIR (Geopolitics, History and Intl. Relations)
journal, and editorial board member of several similar specialized magazines
on three continents.
His 7thbook is just realised in New York.
Kabani, R. (1994), Imperial Fictions: Europe's Myths of Orient,
Brading, D.A. (1991), The
First America: the Spanish Monarchy, Creole Patriots, and the Liberal
Cambridge University Press, (pages 80-88)
A. (1971), The
Controversy between Sepúlveda and Las Casas in the Junta of Valladolid,
The Northern Illinois University Press, (pages 280-282)
Toynbee, A. J. (1934-61),
A Study of History, Vol
VII:Universal States; Universal Churches (Oxford University Press 1954) and Vol XII:
(Oxford University Press 1961)
McBrien, R. (2000),
Lives of the Popes,
Harper San Francisco
Wright, L. (2006),
The Looming Tower: Al-Qaeda and the Road to 9/11,
First Vintage Books
Kipling, R. (1899),
The White Man’s Burden: The United States and The Philippine Islands,
NY 2(99) McClure’s Magazine, (reprint, 1934)
Disraeli, B. (1847), Tancred: Or the New Crusade (Complete),
Echo Library August 28, 2007)
Khana, P. (2019),
The Future is Asian,
Simon & Schuster
Curtain, P.D. (1984),
Cross-Cultural Trade in World History,
Cambridge University Press
Abu-Lughod, J. L. (1989),
Before European Hegemony,
Oxford: Oxford University Press
Lorimer, J. (1880), The
Institutes of Law: a Treatise of the Principles of Jurisprudence as
Determined by Nature (2 ed.),Edinburgh – London: William
Blackwood & Sons (retrieved
via Archive.org as of 14102018)
Wolf, E. R. (1982),
Europe and the People Without History,
Berkeley: University of California Press
Hobson, J.M. (2004),
The Eastern Origins of Western Civilization,
Cambridge University Press
Manning, P. (1996),
Slave Trades, 1500-1800: Globalization of Forced Labour(Variorium:
Aldershot, UK). Volume 15 of An
edited by A. J. Russell-Wood. (ed. and introduction).
Acemoglu, D. and Robinson, J.A. (2012),
Why Nations Fail,
Crown Business (Random House) NY
Harari, Y.N. (2018),
21 Lessons for the 21st
Penguin – Random House UK
Delantry, G. (1995),
London, Macmillan (p.84)
From WWI to www.,
Addleton Academic Publishers, New York
Palacio, A. (2016), Europe on the
Sidelines, Project Syndicate (13 Feb 2016, pg.27).
German Biology Book of 1942 (Biology
for the Middle School, For 5th Grade Girls; chapter: The Laws of
Nature and Humanity)
We have established that all creatures, plants as well as
animals, are in a constant battle for survival. Plants crowd into the area
they need to grow. Every plant that fails to secure enough room and light
must necessarily die. Every animal that does not secure sufficient territory
and guard it against other predators, or lacks the necessary strength and
speed or caution and cleverness will fall prey to its enemies… The battle
for existence is hard and unforgiving, but is the only way to maintain life.
This struggle eliminates everything that is unfit for life, and selects
everything that is able to survive. Mankind,
too, is subject to these natural laws, and has won its dominant position
through struggle. Our Führer tells us:
He who wants to live must fight, and he who does not want to fight in this
world of perpetual struggle does not deserve to live!” (Mein Kampf,
life form strives to ensure the survival of its species… The number of
offspring must be greater than the number of the parents if the species is
to survive (law of the larger number of offspring). Each species strives to
conquer new territory. Here, too, we can recall the Führer’s words: The
goal of female education must be to prepare them for motherhood.(Mein Kampf,p. 460)
These natural laws are incontrovertible; Those who resist them will be wiped
out. Biology not only tells us about animals and plants, but also shows us
the laws we must follow in our lives, and steels our wills to live and fight
according to these laws. The meaning of all life is struggle. Woe to him who
sins against this law. Our Führer reminds us: The world does not exist
for cowardly nations. (Mein Kampf,p. 105)
1Western animosities towards Russia that are constantly
here (with some short-lived exceptions during the Metternich post-Vienna
congress period, Bismarck chancellorship and Yeltsin dizzy years) are
escaping any rational explanation. The only possible logics to find is if
going back to the moment of split of the Christian Church, mid XI century.
That is the time when the Roman curia decided to compete with Constantinople
by organising the invading tribes in Europe for its ‘civilising’ mission
(read: geostrategic ends), alongside the parallel process that have started
with the Russophones undertaking a similar mission in the norther and north
eastern portions of Eurasia. Two parallel ‘civilising’ missions, competing
over concept and territories for centuries.
2Transferring the official seat of the Roman Empire to
Bosporus marked far more than just an event of the peripheral maturity;
periphery pressing onto the centre. It meant that – at the peak times of the
Milan’s Edict of Constantin the Great – the peripheral power successfully
relocated itself closer to the centre; ideologically (metaphysically,
religiously) but also geopolitically (physically, geographically). Not to
insert itself (like during the subsequent Crusaders), but to transcend. That
is a real meaning of the transfer of imperial capital from Rome to Bosporus
once for good. This will be the first and the last such a successful move
from Europe, in human history. With this adjustment – past its failed
European experiment, Roman Empire returned to its origins; Balkans and the
Middle East, which extended the Empire’s life impressively – for over 1,000
3For centuries, it follows the same matrix: doctrinated/induced
inferiority, denouncing, attack, marginalization, passivation, plunder,
indirect rule, remote control presence. Or, reduced to a binary code
formula: victimisation-criminalisation. Namely: humanitarian intervention.
4E.g. Cecil Rhodes, the 19th
century British businessman and the architect of Apartheid, used to say that
to be born an Englishman was to have ‘won first prize in the lottery of
life’. He is also remembered of the following: “I contend that we are the
first race in the world, and that the more of the world we inhabit the
better it is for the human race.” Large part of colonial Africa was called
after his name – Rhodesia, until rather recently, 1979.
5Small surprise that the 43rd
US President (un)famously claimed: ‘you are either with us or against us’.
His father, the 41st
US President, viewed the Cold War and summarised its epilogue effectively:
‘We win, they lose’. For the Atlantist’s world all should be Kierkegaardian either-or, a binary choice.
6To this end: Inventive, proactive, scientific, rational,
disciplined, sell-controlled/self-constraining, sane, sensible, practical,
‘mind-oriented’, independent, and most of all paternal West. The East, of
course, was on the opposite side and inferior: imitative, passive,
superstitious, lazy, irrational, spontaneous, insane, emotional, exotic,
body-oriented, dependent, and above all, child-like. Tall, matured
‘masculinity’ vs. immature and physically underdeveloped ‘femininity’. The
masculine phallus of military, industry, technology, shipping and trade that
is welcomed, if not heartedly invited, to tap and drill the womb-like dwell
of resources, while at the same time seeding the ideological semen of
7To this very day, most of the so-called
Multinational/Cross-continental Trade Pacts are closer to the capitulation
agreements (like those that Britain imposed on China after the Opium Wars)
than to any fair, balanced and mutually beneficial commercial accords. Their
stipulations are regularly kept away from public eyes. When was the last
time you have seen one of them publicly available? No wonder, what a popular
language of today calls barriers to trade
are in fact the remaining socio-economic sovereign rights and other rarefied
instruments of nation’s well-being that these Trade Pacts are derogating. “By
hook or by crook” – as the
Dutch East India Company
formulated it in its XVII century business model moto.
8The novel itself is named after the Norman leader of the
First European Crusades, that later became the Prince of Galilee, and regent
of the satellite Europe’s state on the territory of today’s Syria and Turkey
poor you will always have with you, and you can help them any time you want.
But you will not always have me…” /Mark 14:7-9 (NIV) New International
Version/ was a Biblical verse, allegedly spelled out by Jesus from Nazareth.
It was among most quoted and misused lines – as to justify Europocentrism,
exceptionalism and institutionalisation of inequality which then and there
have started its global conquest.
10To illustrate a centuries-long residual climate of
jingoism, later conceptualised and postulated as the European ideology of
Biologism, let us quote the III Reich’s Biology schoolbook: “The meaning of
all life is struggle. Woe to him who sins against this law. Our Führer
reminds us: ’He who wants to live must fight, and he who does not want to
fight in this world of perpetual struggle does not deserve to live!’ (Mein
Kampf, p. 317) Hence, ‘the world does not exist for cowardly nations’. (Mein
Kampf, p. 105).” (For the full quote see appendix: Biology for the Middle School, The 5th Grade Girls;
chapter: The Laws of Nature and Humanity,
Textbook of 1942)
11The Spirit of Laws
and other writings of Montesquieu were the most decisive influencers on the
French revolutionaries, Jacobins and Napoleon himself. In the hands of
French revolutionaries, Buonaparte and later his own nephew – Napoleon III,
the Montesquieu’s teaching shaped the administrative and legal order of
Europe up to this very day. How did Montesquieu see Europe and the world?
Well, Montesquieu registered the geographic regularity in prosperity and
poverty concentration. His explanation to it was the geography hypothesis:
that people in tropical climates tended to be ‘lazy and to lack
inquisitiveness.’ Consequently, they didn’t work hard, were not innovative,
which ultimately led them to poverty. Montesquieu further speculated that
lazy people tended to be ruled by despots – due to their tropical location –
a political phenomenon linked with economic failure, and harsh primitive
APRIL 21, 2019
Other Side of the Mirror
An “inventor, startup guru, conceptualist and CEO”
hangs out at the world’s four-day power lunch
Pia Victoria Poppenreiter
has been a couple of months since I was hanging out in Davos
learning about this year’s World Economic Forum. Perhaps I have a
unique view, because I am the founder of Peppr and Ohlala, described
as “the one dating app where everyone’s intentions are very clear.”
and the person said to be responsible for the #escortgate
controversy, in which paid escorts showed up at one of the world’s
most exclusive investor conferences in Berlin in 2016. I am also the
author of the statement that “We
all have sex work to do,” I follow up on all conversations
related to escorting and sex work, which I deliberately call “paid
I have been following up on the conversations ever since: about
world leaders said to be not acting as role models (or acting as bad
role models), about the hypocrisy over sustainability, philanthropic
models or the proposals to adjust taxes for the wealthier among us
to secure a basic standard of living for all, a conversation the
ones directly affected seemed to be avoiding.
Davos, as we know, brings together so many of the world’s most
powerful leaders – parleys occur, deals are made and opportunities
appear that likely don’t ever arise elsewhere. And among these deal
makers are people whose drive takes other avenues.
As one woman
was quoted as saying: “It’s the kind of place where if a woman
turns away to exit a conversation and looks back just quickly
enough, she’ll find her posterior aesthetic being carefully
dissected by the man who just asked her for her business card — even
if he is the CEO of a major bank. When we weren’t being asked how we
got here, we were constantly being stared up and down by CEOs, hedge
fund managers, finance ministers and embassy heads.”
However, I am still a bit confused about the opinionated statements
that were going on this year after Davos. It’s the same debates and
thoughts we had around #escortgate. I have been wondering how to
productively progress the conversation around this morally,
emotionally loaded topic, because clearly we are running around in
What I have seen is a whole lot of personal, subjective judgments of
people sometimes labeled as “escorts” and how they are not supposed
to be around in places like Davos. I had hoped for a more deliberate
thought-through conversation, a dialogue, but mostly what I read
stigmatizes and judges people on their very personal choices and
agreements: how they want (or have to — as most of us do) to make
money, to afford a living.
“I don’t want to be mistaken for a prostitute”
You might wonder which conversations or statements I was so confused
existence of escorts at the Forum, by a young woman named
“And then I heard the whispers of what happens at night, at the
parties, in the hotel lobbies and at the famous Piano Bar where it
was an unspoken understanding that some men ‘took off their wedding
rings.’ Almost all my male colleagues commented on the presence of
female escorts at these venues, many of which were guest-list only,
or required a hotel badge to access. A quick online search displayed
a number of articles confirming that the existence of and easy
access to escorts at Davos is nothing new, and what for some
delegates, could be a strong motivator to attend.” Statement found
Demand creates supply. It’s as simple as that and from an economic
standpoint, I do understand wo/men going there to seek business, in
any sense. Also, on that particular one.
However, I wonder: What is so bad about the “existence of and easy
access of escorts” in the first place? Why shouldn’t there be men or
women who get paid to date at the World Economic Forum? If it’s
true, maybe some men took off rings because they are in an open
marriage? Why would you care about someone else’s choice? (Unless
you are the wife of that person and you have a personal private
agreement to stay physically faithful and not take the ring off.)
In Switzerland, at least, if there really were some men or women
paid to have sex, it would be legal and regulated — not even a
breach of law. For me, these workers should be as much part of the
conversation as anyone else in Davos.
Actually, given the current political environment in the US around
the topic of sex work, they should definitely be part of the
conversations, because this industry screams: “Please reinvent me
and improve circumstances for those who are not protected. Make it
safer for everyone involved.”
What else has been subject of the realm on feeling “unsafe” or
“discriminated” at Davos.
I look and check bodies all the time myself, with men and women. I
can appreciate a beautiful person without having the urge to hook
up. We do check out people all the time — on Instagram and Facebook.
But we are not allowed to look in real life? Everyone does it.
Recently, I have found myself with other people in the office
kitchen wondering how cute the new intern is. #Wetoo do it.
Third quote about warnings regarding sexual
“At the Davos opening Women’s Reception, with some male allies in
attendance, I asked a question: Why is it that in 2019, young female
delegates are forewarned about sexual harassment — as if it’s our
responsibility to protect ourselves — but the delegates themselves
aren’t given training on how (or why) not to harass? There was no
answer, other than a murmuring recognition that it was a known
issue: many of the women who attended in past years had personal
experience of sexual harassment.”
What is actually sexual harassment? Can we come up with a
definition? Does sexual harassment go both ways? Where does it
start? Where to draw the line?
There is always two sides of the story and I feel like, in the realm
of the “gender narrative debate” (certain traits assigned to genders
because of a gender), we need to let both parties speak in order to
find a common ground. What one attempt-to-hit-on-someone finds okay,
another may feel totally offended.
Of course we could be confused anyway. Every third relationship
evolves in a work-related context. So that means, including these
events, it could be a dating market as well, right? Personally, 90
percent of my time, I am surrounded by people with whom I somehow
work together. The chances that I meet someone that I want to
partner up with is high. So naturally, events like this also create
a space where I might get to know someone for a night, maybe more.
I understand, there are certain limits: If someone runs up to
someone during the day time event in a straightforward business
context and does a pussy or penis grab (Presidential style?), I
understand negative sentiment. But if people (yes, men AND women)
hit on each other in a Piano Bar to romantic music at 2 in the
morning, after a couple of glasses of wine or even four gin and
tonics, where people go to hang loose and left the laptop in their
hotel room, you cannot possibly be surprised that this is happening.
Again, it goes both ways. We all forget our manners sometimes, when
we are drunk (or high, or whatever). On a personal note: The most
aggressive hit on me ever was by a drunken woman, not a man.
“I think about what I wear more because there are a lot of
prostitutes in Davos, especially at the Piano Bar,” one woman said,
referencing the popular late-night hot spot. “I don’t want to be
mistaken for a prostitute.”
When we gender mainstream almost everything, even adjust anthems of
countries, toilet signs, why don’t we just get rid of that
particular word too? Or best: all of them: escort, prostitute,
whore. Those devaluating terms are connected directly to women. We
will not evolve in any of the conversations if we use preconceived
terms. We need to let go of these terms. When we talk empowerment,
we need to empower all women (or people in general). That certainly
includes also those who get paid to date.
I would like to start proposing a couple of solutions and quick
fixes. Here are some ideas that I would like to propose as to how to
progress in this entire discussion:
Power of perception: Could you, instead looking down toward
this type of entrepreneur, take it as a compliment? Flip the
coin. Be bold and brave. So what? Maybe that person misread the
signs? If he/she thinks you want to be paid to date: just say.
‘No, I don’t‘. This way you are still respecting other people,
especially women who do this — as a personal choice entering
into an agreement — and you maintain your own integrity. Problem
solved. That I find acting out of a position of power, instead
of victimizing yourself.
Let’s stop gender blaming! People can have female and male
traits. This makes the whole gender debate almost irrelevant.
This is “how men are” or this is “how women are” is simply
stereotyping our way to further separation. Even the Davos
Vanity Fair – as my legendary professor Anis H. Bajrektarevic
calls the WEF – advocates the gender neutrality.
This whole finger pointing and mansplaining doesn’t solve anything
but create negative sentiment because we simply sometimes don’t know
anymore as to how to behave in certain contexts. I feel like the
whole dynamic is ruled by fear, as to what we are not supposed to
do, instead of relearning how we can handle each other in certain
contexts. Reframe it in a positive way. Look at it as a chance or
And it goes both ways, this #metoo. We have to find a common ground
towards a #wetoo. From he said, he did, she said, she did. We need
to evolve to a “#wetoo are going to solve this together.”
3. Education is key. We need proper training of all sorts on how to
handle each other. Why not invest in our (work) relationships?
Maybe we need to elaborate a guideline. We could design a new sort
of “Knigge” or a Code of Conduct on how to behave in a work-related
context. This could help navigate through some uncertainties,
especially if cultures vary across borders and continents.
Or maybe even a defense class to train people for difficult
situations. For example: I had a compulsory defense class in middle
school. We were trained by really big guys to defend ourselves. The
impact in my life? I always feel/felt safe, because though I might
be physically inferior, I know some really important tricks. It gave
me a lifelong confidence. Maybe that’s what we all have to learn at
the end of the day: articulate our intentions properly and (be able
to) show the limits.
Imagine a world, free from personal judgement, where “it” would be
decriminalized. People active in this field could seek help if they
needed it and would pay taxes. The proceeds of the taxes could be
used to combat negative forces within this market.
That for me, is a desirable future. One I would like to help shape.
What do you think?
Davos: The Other Side of the Mirror
An “inventor, startup guru, conceptualist and CEO” hangs out at the
world’s four-day power lunch
Pia Victoria Poppenreiter
APRIL 21, 2019
The Sino-US Trade War – Why China can’t win it
Prof. Anis H. Bajrektarevic
our history only appear overheated, but is essentially calmly
predetermined? Is it directional or conceivable, dialectic and
eclectic or cyclical, and therefore cynical? Surely, our history
warns. Does it also provide for a hope? Hence, what is in front
of us: destiny or future?
One of the biggest (nearly schizophrenic) dilemmas of
liberalism, ever since David Hume and Adam Smith, was an insight
into reality; whether the world is essentially Hobbesian
or Kantian. As postulated, the main task of any liberal
state is to enable and maintain wealth of its nation, which of
course rests upon wealthy individuals inhabiting the particular
state. That imperative brought about another dilemma: if wealthy
individual, the state will rob you, but in absence of it,
the pauperized masses will mob you. The invisible hand
of Smith’s followers have found the satisfactory answer –
sovereign debt. That ‘invention’ meant: relatively strong
central government of the state. Instead of popular control
through the democratic checks-&-balances mechanism, such a state
should be rather heavily indebted. Debt – firstly to local
merchants, than to foreigners – is a far more powerful
deterrent, as it resides outside the popular check domain. With
such a mixed blessing, no empire can easily demonetize
its legitimacy, and abandon its hierarchical but invisible and
unconstitutional controls. This is how a debtor empire was born.
A blessing or totalitarian curse? Let us briefly examine it.
The Soviet Union – much as (the pre-Deng’s) China itself – was
far more of a classic continental military empire (overtly
brutal; rigid, authoritative, anti-individual, apparent,
secretive), while the US was more a financial-trading empire
(covertly coercive; hierarchical, yet asocial, exploitive,
pervasive, polarizing). On opposite sides of the globe and
cognition, to each other they remained enigmatic, mysterious and
incalculable: Bear of permafrost vs. Fish of the
warm seas. Sparta vs. Athens. Rome vs. Phoenicia… However,
common for the both was a super-appetite for omnipresence. Along
with the price to pay for it.
Consequently, the Soviets went bankrupt by mid 1980s – they
cracked under its own weight, imperially overstretched. So did
the Americans – the ‘white man burden’ fractured them already by
the Vietnam war, with the Nixon shock only officializing
it. However, the US imperium managed to survive and to outlive
the Soviets. How? The United States, with its financial capital
(or an outfoxing illusion of it), evolved into a debtor empire
through the Wall Street guaranties. Titanium-made Sputnik
vs. gold mine of printed-paper… Nothing epitomizes this better
than the words of the longest serving US Federal Reserve’s boss,
Alan Greenspan, who famously said to then French President
Jacques Chirac: “True, the dollar is our currency, but your
problem”. Hegemony vs. hegemoney.
Conventional economic theory teaches us that money is a
universal equivalent to all goods. Historically, currencies were
a space and time-related, to say locality-dependent. However,
like no currency ever before, the US dollar became – past the
WWII – the universal equivalent to all other moneys of the
world. According to history of currencies, the core component of
the non-precious metals money is a so-called promissory note –
intangible belief that, by any given point of future, a
particular shiny paper (self-styled as money) will be smoothly
exchanged for real goods.
Thus, roughly speaking, money is nothing else but a
civilizational construct about imagined/projected tomorrow –
that the next day (which nobody has ever seen in the history of
humankind, but everybody operates with) definitelly comes (i),
and that this tomorrow will certainly be a better day then our
yesterday or even our today (ii).
This and similar types of social contracts (horizontal and
vertical) over the collective constructs hold society together
as much as its economy keeps it alive and evolving. Hence, it is
money that powers economy, but our blind faith in (constructed)
tomorrows and its alleged certainty is what empowers money.
Clearly, the universal equivalent of all equivalents – the US
dollar – follows the same pattern: Strong and widely accepted
promise. What does the US dollar promise when there is no gold
cover attached to it ever since the time of Nixon shock of 1971?
Pentagon promises that the oceanic sea lines will remain opened
(read: controlled by the US Navy), pathways unhindered, and that
the most traded world’s commodity – oil, will be delivered. So,
it is not a crude or its delivery what is a cover to the US
dollar – it is a promise that oil of tomorrow will be
deliverable. That is a real might of the US dollar, which in
return finances Pentagon’s massive expenditures and shoulders
Admired and feared, Pentagon further fans our planetary belief
in tomorrow’s deliverability – if we only keep our faith in
dollar (and hydrocarbons’ energized economy), and so on and on
in perpetuated circle of mutual reinforcements.
These two pillars of the US might from the East coast (the US
Treasury/Wall Street and Pentagon) together with the two pillars
of the West coast – both financed by the US dollar and spread
through the open sea-lanes (Silicone Valley and Hollywood), are
an essence of the US posture.
This very nature of power explains why the Americans have missed
to take our mankind into completely other direction; towards the
non-confrontational, decarbonized, de-monetized/de-financialized
and de-psychologized, the self-realizing and green humankind. In
short, to turn history into a moral success story. They had such
a chance when, past the Gorbachev’s unconditional surrender of
the Soviet bloc, and the Deng’s Copernicus-shift of China, the
US – unconstrained as a lonely superpower – solely
dictated terms of reference; our common destiny and direction/s
to our future/s.
rarely a game-changer
Sadly enough, that was not the first missed opportunity for the
US to soften and delay its forthcoming, imminent
multidimensional imperial retreat. The very epilogue of the WWII
meant a full security guaranty for the US: Geo-economically –
54% of anything manufactured in the world was carrying the
Made in USA label, and geostrategically – the US had
uninterruptedly enjoyed nearly a decade of the ‘nuclear
monopoly’. Up to this very day, the US scores the biggest number
of N-tests conducted, the largest stockpile of nuclear weaponry,
and it represents the only power ever deploying this ‘ultimate
weapon’ on other nation. To complete the irony, Americans enjoy
geographic advantage like no other empire before. Save the US,
as Ikenberry notes: “…every major power in the world lives in a
crowded geopolitical neighborhood where shifts in power
routinely provoke counterbalancing”. Look the map, at Russia or
China and their packed surroundings. The US is blessed with
neighboring oceans – all that should harbor tranquility, peace
and prosperity, foresightedness.
Why the lonely might, an empire by invitation did not
evolve into empire of relaxation, a generator of harmony?
Why does it hold (extra-judicially) captive more political
prisoners on Cuban soil than the badmouthed Cuban regime has
ever had? Why does it remain obsessed with armament for at home
and abroad? What are we talking about here – the inadequate
intensity of our confrontational push or about the
false course of our civilizational direction?
Indeed, no successful and enduring empire does merely rely on
coercion, be it abroad or at home. However, unable to escape its
inner logics and deeply-rooted appeal of confrontational
nostalgia, the prevailing archrival is only a winner, rarely
To sum up; After the collapse of the Soviet Union, Americans
accelerated expansion while waiting for (real or imagined)
adversaries to further decline, ‘liberalize’ and bandwagon
behind the US. Expansion is the path to security dictatum
only exacerbated the problems afflicting the Pax Americana.
That is how the capability of the US to maintain its order
started to erode faster than the capacity of its opponents to
challenge it. A classical imperial self-entrapment!! And the
repeated failure to notice and recalibrate its imperial retreat
brought the painful hangovers to Washington by the last
presidential elections. Inability to manage the rising costs of
sustaining the imperial order only increased the domestic
popular revolt and political pressure to abandon its ‘mission’
altogether. Perfectly hitting the target to miss everything else
* * * *
When the Soviets lost
their own indigenous ideological matrix and maverick
confrontational stance, and when the US dominated West missed to
triumph although winning the Cold War, how to expect from the
imitator to score the lasting moral or even a momentary economic
Neither more confrontation and more carbons nor more weaponized
trade and traded weapons will save our day. It failed in past,
it will fail again any given day.
Interestingly, China opposed the I World, left the II in rift,
and ever since Bandung of 1955 it neither won over nor joined
the III Way. Today, many see it as a main contestant. But, where
is a lasting success?
Greening international relations along with greening of economy
(geopolitical and environmental understanding, de-acidification
and relaxation) is the only way out. Historically, no global
leader has ever emerged from a shaky and distrustful
neighborhood, or by offering little bit more of the same in lieu
of an innovative technological advancement. Ergo, it all starts
from within, from at home. Without support from a home base,
there is no game changer. China’s home is Asia.
Hence, it is not only a new, non-imitative, turn of technology
what is needed. Without truly and sincerely embracing mechanisms
such as the NaM, ASEAN and SAARC (eventually even the OSCE) and
the main champions of multilateralism in Asia, those being India
Indonesia and Japan first of all, China has no future of what is
planetary awaited – the third force, a game-changer, lasting and
trusted global leader.
Prof. Anis H. Bajrektarevic,
Vienna, 31 MAR 2019
Author is chairperson and professor in international law and
global political studies, Vienna, Austria. He has authored six
books (for American and European publishers) and numerous
articles on, mainly, geopolitics energy and technology.
Professor is editor of the NY-based GHIR (Geopolitics, History
and Intl. Relations) journal,
and editorial board member of several similar specialized
magazines on three continents.
‘From WWI to www. – Europe and the World 1918-2018’ has been
APRIL 21, 2019
CHRISTIAN SCHWARZ-SCHILLING NEVER SURVIVES: "Let
the High Representative pass a law on the negation of the
GENOCIDE, today's LAW Dodik takes a grave offense on himself
This March, two European people, Europeans, called on us to
remember memories of last-century disasters: the verdict against
Radovan Karadzic and the appearance of Chetniks in Višegrad,
writes in the authorial text for DW Christian Schwarz-Schilling
The final verdict of the Hague Tribunal for Yugoslavia declared
former Bosnian Serb leader Radovan Karadzic finally guilty of
crimes against humanity in Bosnia and Herzegovina and, in
particular, for genocide in Srebrenica. His sentence has been
changed to life. It is difficult to imagine a different sentence
for this gravity of the crime, the planned killing of thousands
of innocent people. It is far more astounding that politicians
who now have responsibility for BiH are criticizing this High
Court judgment in The Hague and the Bagatelish, or even totally
denying war crimes and human rights violations that fall into
the worst crimes in Europe after World War II.
Claiming that the genocide did not happen, the current state
president of BiH, Milorad Dodik, a representative of the
Republika Srpska and the Serbian "constituent people", publicly
said in 2008 that "Srebrenica was a genocide".
Today's lies Dodik takes on a grave guilt. In Germany, after the
Second World War, there was a similar situation with the
prosecution of Holocaust crimes before the War Crimes Tribunal
in Nuremberg: the perpetrators were, however, sentenced to death
or to very long prison sentences. But in spite of that, there
were citizens and politicians who simply denied killing in
concentration camps like Auschwitz.
To this, the German Bundestag, the highest parliament of the
Federal Republic, passed a law that denies the Holocaust to be
punishable. Why does not the same happen in BiH? If there are
politicians who, with their votes in parliament, prevent such a
law, then the task of the High Representative is to consider the
peace process in BiH to pass such a law in order to protect the
rule of law.
Chetniks on the Drina
In the first half of March, the incredible performance of
Serbian Chetniks took place in Višegrad on the Drina River. More
than a hundred Chetniks came in black uniforms and screamed
their war songs like
"there will be hell again and bloody Drina, here are the
Chetniks from Serb mountains."
During 1943, the Chetniks at this region in the Drina Valley
committed the most severe crimes together with the German
Wehrmacht, the Nazis. Their supreme commander, Draza Mihailovic,
led this terrorist gang and killed thousands of people. In 1946
he was sentenced to death in a Belgrade court. This provocative
performance in March 2019 is being held in honor of him now! As
the German newspaper "taz" states correctly:
"Fifty years later, in 1993, the events were repeated: the Serb
extremists attacked the towns of Foca, Visegrad and killed
thousands of Bosniaks, drove surviving women to rape camps - to
a hotel three kilometers away from Višegrad - and live men bound
in the Drina. "
Then, as it is supposed, about 3,000 people were sent to death.
To use these events today for celebration goes beyond the power
of the imagination of every democracy. It is inconceivable that
in Germany today hundreds of former members of the SS gather in
their uniforms, sing songs to Hitler and celebrate in honor of
Mr. Himmler. As it is heard, the Bosnian State Prosecution has
launched an investigation. This investigation should quickly
lead to the results and appropriate court proceedings. I am
afraid that if BiH wants to protect democracy, parliament must
quickly pass the missing laws. Not only the denial of genocide
in Srebrenica must be punishable, but also membership or obvious
cooperation with fascist associations.
And if such a legislative initiative again opposes the
opposition of one of the "constituent peoples," the High
Representative must interfere.
Nothing in Bosnia is more important than democracy.
The great historian and politician Karl Popper published the
book "Open Society and Its Enemies" after the Second World War,
"Democracy is an invaluable battlefield for any meaningful
reform, because it allows for reforms without the use of
violence." But if democracy is not the first priority every
single battle in this battlefield, then the latent
antidemocratic tendencies that it has always can lead to the
collapse of democracy. Where there is no understanding of these
principles, it must fight for their development; the reversed
policy can be catastrophic, it can lead to defeat in the most
important fighting, namely the struggle for democracy itself. "
Prof. dr. Christian Schwarz-Schilling was from 1982 to '92.
Minister of Post and Telecommunications in the German government
of Chancellor Helmut Kohl. From the protest against the German
government's restraint during the war in BiH, he resigned. Ten
years was an international mediator for BiH, in the period
2006-2007. he served as the High Representative in BiH.
Occasionally he writes columns for DW.
MARCH 29, 2019
Huawei case: The HiFi Geostrategic Gambit
Juan Martin González Cabańas
In a general, comprehensive, strategic outline of the global
scenario we can see that China is being harassed on several
fronts by the US: commercial pressures, diplomatic maneuvers to
block the progress of infrastructure projects (OBOR/New Silk
Road), at technological level, the boycott/ restrictions against
Huawei. These are some of the current modalities of strategic
competition between great powers, without involving the direct
use of hard / military power, which we could well consider a
Cold War 2.0.
Analyzing the factors and interests at stake, the events in full
development during the last months are not surprising, as the
advances of the US government against the Chinese technological
giant Huawei. Since the arrest of its CFO, Meng Wanzhou,
daughter of the founder of the company, to accusations of
espionage, boycotts and diplomatic pressure to annul Huawei’s
advances in several countries.
Huawei is the flagship, the spearhead of the Chinese
technological advance. This onslaught is not a coincidence.
While formally not having direct links with the Chinese
government, Huawei has a prominent role in the Chinese strategic
technological plan "Made in China 2025", because
of its development and implementation of 5G networks, key part
of the plan, which are estimated to be available around soon.
The strategic approach is to change the Chinese productive
matrix towards a "High Tech" economy, of design and
innovation, to position China in the forefront in the
technological advanced sectors of the modern economy (artificial
intelligence, biotechnology, robotics, automation, the internet
of things, telecommunications, software, renewable energies, and
the element that is in the most interest for us to analyze, the
5G). In Washington, they do not feel comfortable with Chinese
The Eurasia Group consulting firm argues that the
installation of 5G networks will involve one of the biggest
changes in our time, comparing its appearance with major breaks
in the technological history such as electricity. Some
specialists, websites and the press have coined the term "Sputnik"
moment, by comparing the potential impact of competition for the
development of 5G technologies with the space race in the Cold
War at the time.
The 5G will allow the use of faster network data, as well as the
widespread and coordinated use of advanced technologies such as
artificial intelligence, the internet of things, smart cities,
automation, improvements in health, and in the military field.
The US has put pressure on several of its allies (Australia, New
Zealand, Germany, Great Britain, and Canada to name some) to
block Huawei's advances in services and investments in their
countries, while restricting the purchase of Huawei's products
and services on North American soil.
While it is true that several countries could give in from the
pressure from Washington to "encircle" Huawei and
restrict its services and products, so is the fact that many
other countries, especially the many that have China as their
main trading partner, in addition to all the pleiad of emerging
and developing countries that are being seduced by the economic
possibilities, and in this specific case, technology offered by
China and its companies. What it would imply, a worldwide
competition between American diplomatic muscle and Chinese sweet
And also in commercial terms, the progress of Huawei into the
top of the tech companies is remarkable, due to its production
methods and its business model, having surpassed, for example,
APPLE among the largest companies that sells mobile phones being
only second to Samsung.
Does anyone remember free trade? Competition? What’s up with
that? Or was it just a trick? It seems that in the global
economic game, the US throws the chessboard away when it loses,
and uses the geopolitical muscle, without any problem, following
the Groucho's Marx doctrine: "Those are my principles, and if
you don't like them... well, I have others."
The fears about Huawei's technology are hiding a power struggle,
a hegemonic dispute over technology. So far the accusations of
espionage against this corporation perhaps are valid in
theoretical sense, but unprovable in facts, what left them as
mere speculations. The accusations by the US against Huawei,
through the speech of “the threat of espionage” are
unbelievable, and hypocritical in some sense, and the speech is
marked by a double standard… Who represents the threat?
is the same US that nowadays "advises" its allies and
other countries to "protect" themselves against the "threat"
of Huawei's espionage in favor of its government, the same
country that spied on its own allies in a wicked way, if we
remember the cases that Assange and Snowden brought to light.
We can also highlight recently the Cambridge Analytica
scandal – much of which has been well predicted by prof. Anis H.
Bajrektarevic in his influential manifesto about the McFB
world of tomorrow. The Cambridge Analytica fiasco plainly
showed the unholy relations between the big technological “independent”
corporations like Facebook and Google with the political power
in the West.
Technological competition is another chessboard of this new
multilevel and multidimensional XXI Century Great
Game, where the great actors move
5G is the focal point for a global rush to dominate the next
wave of technological development - a race many policymakers
worry the U.S. is already losing, and that's why they act in
this aggressive way. The strategic competition for advanced,
high technologies such as 5G, and innovations in the fourth
industrial revolution, will mark the "podium" of the
great powers of the 21st century.
The technological new cold war between the two largest economies
and powers in the world shows no signs of diminishing, either
the strategic competition.
Who will win this Great Game on the chessboards? The patience /
precaution and forecast of the game of Go, or the strong bets
and bluffs of poker.
The geostrategic chessboard is already deployed. Players already
have their cards in hand, and have moved their tokens. Prestige
is to come.
Juan Martin González Cabańas is a senior researcher and analyst at the Dossier Geopolitico
MARCH 20, 2019
to the Afghan Future: The
security challenges of Afghanistan's reconstruction and development
current talks between the representatives of the Taliban and the US
Government in Qatar are an important step but peace and stability are
still beyond reach. Afghanistan's reconstruction and durable
development requires a satisfactory level of security and tackling
issues such as unemployment, corruption, and armed violence.
2001 many reconstruction and assistance efforts have been conducted
in Afghanistan but their real impact is limited by the security
context and corruption. Foreign material and financial assistance was
affected by embezzlement and misappropriation. Many examples can be
easily found in Kabul or all over the country. In Kabul's
Parwan-e-seh district, the main road was in a bad shape and looked as
if it had been built during the 1970s or the 1980s. According to some
local residents, the road had been built during the 2000s and the
main cause of its deplorable condition was corruption : the road
was 9 cm-thick, while it was supposed to be 18 cm-thick and its
maintenance was almost nonexistent. In many rural areas schools were
built with the financial support of foreign countries, NGOs or
organizations but an important part of these funds have disappeared.
As a result, these schools are often unfinished or badly constructed
buildings where the furnitures, windows, heating system, decent
toilets or electricity are missing.
2001 ISAF Provincial Reconstruction Teams did a great work but it
ended with the withdrawal of ISAF troops. The action of the PRTs also
sparked debates and was criticised by some non-governmental
organizations as it could create confusion in the minds of local
populations about the nature of humanitarian assistance, as well as
the role of foreign armed forces and foreign NGOs. Many foreign or
local NGOs operating in Afghanistan and Pakistan have reported that
after the elimination of Osama bin Laden by a team of US Navy SEALs
in Abbottabad in May 2011, they were facing more difficulties in
carrying out their operations. It can be explained by the fact that
one of the methods used by the CIA to identify Osama bin Laden took
the form of a fake vaccination programme conducted in Abbottabad and
seriously undermined the trust of local populations towards NGOs, and
especially foreign aid workers.
current security context is critical, the Taliban controls from 44%
to 61% of Afghan districts  and the Islamic State is conducting
terrorist attacks in the country. The current negotiations are an
important step but their outcome will not bring a stable and
immediate peace. Only a fraction of the Taliban has endorsed this
process and agrees to participate to it as the whole Taliban movement
remains divided. Some Taliban factions wants a full withdrawal of
foreign troops and of all foreign presence, as well as the
resignation of the current Afghan government. This precondition can't
be satisfied as it would put the current Afghan government at risk
and trigger a new phase of conflict. Such possibility would not
create a proper context for reconstruction. Moreover, since the fall
of its Syrian and Iraqi Caliphate, the Islamic State has found a new
momentum in Afghanistan and some Taliban factions have pledged
allegiance to Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, while others refuse to do so and
are engaged in a fierce competition with ISIS.
this regard, reconstruction and development will depend on the
context created by the peace deal and a satisfactory agreement for
all parties, which is far from being easy. All parties have ties to
foreign and neighbouring countries. It means that foreign powers and
neighbouring countries should reassess their agendas and interests in
Afghanistan. They should also find common interests and a joint
approach, at least with regard to the reconstruction of the country.
It's the only way to ensure a sound reconstruction process and
especially the access to rural areas where most of the work should be
conditions and corruption are also closely tied to the social and
economical problems affecting Afghanistan's rural areas. Agriculture
is the largest sector and the basis of Afghanistan's economy.
Agriculture should be strongly supported, especially when it comes to
the eradication of opium poppy cultivation. The opiate economy
accounts for 20% to 32% of the country's GDP (US$ 4.1-6.6 billion)
 and 24 provinces out of 34 grow opium poppy but 69% of
cultivation is carried out in Southern Afghanistan.  Taliban
groups control these areas and earn c. US$ 200 million per year from
the opiate economy. Eradication efforts have led to a decline of
opium production from 9000 tons in 2017 to 6400 tons in 2018 and the
price of dry opium fell to its lowest level since 2004 (US$ 94 per
kg).  Foreign support is crucial but the United States of America
have decided in February 2019 to end Operation Iron Tempest, an
airstrike campaign launched in 2017 against Afghan drug labs.
jobs and decent revenues to rural populations play a role in
decreasing the activities of insurgent groups in rural areas. This
key issue was well understood by the French troops in charge of
civil-military operations in the province of Kapisa and the district
of Surobi. French scholar Bernard Dupaigne explained that during the
First Indochina War (1946-1954) « the map of quiet areas
coincided exactly with the map of regions where hydraulic works
improving agricultural yields had been carried out by French
engineers. The areas controlled by the insurgency corresponded to
poor regions from an agricultural point of view ».  The
French troops conducting civil-military operations in Kapisa and Surobi wished to play a role in the long-term development of these
areas but their mission was ended in 2012.
the cultivation of opium poppy and supporting farmers in their
transition towards the cultivation of legal crops is expensive. Many
efforts have been done and opium production has decreased but the
results are limited by corruption, widespread poverty, the threats
made by criminal gangs, corrupt officials or Taliban commanders
against farmers. Taking into account such difficulties, some experts
argue that opium poppy cultivation and opium production should be
allowed and that farmers could legally sell their production to the
pharmaceutical industry. Such alternative could provide stable
revenues to a part of Afghan rural populations. 
plays an important role in the development of Afghanistan, especially
vocational education and professional training. As one of the most
infuential thinkers and leading practitioners in the field, Dr.
Djawed Sangdel have repeatedly stressed: « Afghanistan may
need businessmen and managers but it needs even more technicians,
agronomists and engineers. »
reconstruction and development of Afghanistan will also benefit from
the Belt and Road Initiative, China's new Silk Road, but it requires
as well serious security improvements and a coherent regional
approach from foreign and international powers. The new Great Game in
Central Asia opposing the USA to Russia and China could, in this
perspective, could prevent Afghanistan from reaping the benefits of
trade with China and hinder its development. Competition between
international or regional powers can take a violent form, especially
when it will come to the control and the exploitation of strategical
mineral resources and rare-earth elements whose value could reach $3
trillion. Mineral resources are an important asset for the country
and its development but the local mining industry is opaque and
Afghanistan's Ministry of Mines and Petroleum is affected by
corruption.  Moreover, illegal mining benefits to various criminal
gangs and the Taliban.
control upon this sector should be increased, sound legal standards
should be enforced, corruption should be punished and transparence
should be supported. Moreover, there should be a comprehensive and
coherent strategy ensuring that Afghanistan will not just own its
resources but it will also use the revenues generated by minerals or
oil for its development and reconstruction. The current trends on
international markets and the increasing scarcity of some mineral or
energy resources have also led to a crucial issue for Afghanistan.
Competition among foreign powers over the access to rare and
strategic minerals will also have a negative impact upon the
country : it could increase corruption, weak governance, and
aggravate the « resource curse ».
should be a multidimensional strategy taking into account these
issues and supported by the United Nations, foreign powers involved
in Afghanistan and regional powers or neighbours. In order to succeed
there should be a common and radically new approach whereby foreign
powers and regional powers should find a common ground and common
goals or at least, interests. Afghanistan is affected by the
geopolitical competition opposing the USA to Russia and China but
also by the US-Iranian crisis, as well as the Indo-Pakistani rivalry.
Iran and the former Soviet republics of Central Asia (Kazakhstan,
Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan) should be
included in this joint approach. Saudi Arabia and Qatar should not be
left aside but the effects of their past influence and their future
role should be questioned. This approach is obviously too optimistic
but the long-term development and stability of Afghanistan can be
only ensured by a genuine commitment of all parties.
Professor of the World History
at the Geneva School of Diplomacy and International Relations. He is
also senior anlaysit at the Geneva
International Peace Research Institute (GIPRI)
« Afghanistan Opium Survey 2017, Challenges to sustainable
development, peace and security », United Nations Office
on Drugs and Crime and Narcotics Survey Directorate of the Ministry
of Counter-Narcotics of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, May
« Afghanistan Opium Survey 2018, Cultivation and
Production », United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime and
Crime and Narcotics Survey Directorate of the Ministry of
Counter-Narcotics of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, November
afghans, Carnets de route, 1963-2014,
Gallimard, 2015, pp.222-223
Olivier Maguet, « La production de drogue : un enjeu
qui dépasse largement les frontières », pp.83-100,
in Pierre Micheletti,
Gagner les cœurs et les esprits,
Presses Universitaires de Grenoble / RFI, 2011
Zarif’s sudden resignation: The
beginning of the militarization of the Iranian diplomacy?
Bakhtyar Aljaf, Director of IFIMES
Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif expressed his
resignation, a quiet diplomat and a seasoned politician, one of the
soft faces of Iran's foreign policy, for what is known as a
political wisdom who can able to bring Iran an acceptable nuclear
agreement. It was enough when the dean of diplomacy of the 20th
century Kissinger given him a copy of his book dedicated with “To my
enemy who deserves respect".
His political independence gave him a margin for political
maneuvering, which was rarely had his predecessors from the former
Iranian foreign ministers. But the mentality of the revolution seems
to be dominating the mentality of the state in Iran. The result is
that he announced his resignation on 26.02.2019 and which was
rejected from President Rohani who is reformer like him.
The possibility of the possibility of the political transformations
in Iran is closer to speculation than expected. We can’t analyze
about Iran's foreign policy without Zarif, as long as Iran today
seems to not care about the consequences of confrontation with the
President Rouhani himself may be a subjected to a scenario similar
to Zarif scenario. Eventual questioning in the parliament and the
call of former Iranian President Ahmadinejad to his impeachment and
forming a transitional government to continue confrontation with US.
The reformist movement in Iran believes that the conservatives along
with the deep state clerical establishment is convinced that if
things continue as they are internally and externally, the character
of the next president will be military. The new Leader should be a
strategic military figure such as Qasem Soleimani (Commander of the
Quds corps) or Mohsen Rezai (former commander of the Iranian
Revolutionary Guard and the current secretary of the Expediency
discernment council). General Qasem Soleimani will stay as the key
figure among others, because of his relations with the deep state,
and even externally with his relations with various political and
military movements in the Middle East) Iraq, Syria, Yemen, Libanon)
connected to Iran.
Despite the many reasons discussed in the background prompted Zarif
to resign, this resignation indicate that there is a big dissidence
in the Iranian political system. At the time Zarif called for
necessity of Iran to deal with European conditions more seriously ,
the Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei issued the most critical words to
the Europeans, and considered them as partners with the US in an
attempt to destroy Iran.
The main reason behind this resignation is the nature of dealing
with Iran's foreign policy. The bilateralism that has characterized
Iran's foreign policy since 1979. The Iranian political divergence
has caused a lot of paralysis And raise the skepticism of the
international community. When Iranian Foreign Minister Zarif uses
the language of diplomacy with others, we find the generals of the
Revolutionary Guard and the advisers of the Supreme Leader use the
language of threats and intimidation
Despite Zarif's continuous attempts to prove an independent foreign
policy away from the conservative and reformist conflict in Iran, he
did not succeed in that either. Each faction has a particular view
on Iran's foreign priorities, which in turn restricted many of
Zarif's foreign efforts. The Iranian Revolutionary Guards try to
return back the nuclear negotiations to the Supreme National
Security Council of Iran, and withdraw the file from the Iranian
The Supreme Leader and the Revolutionary Guards want the end of the
Trump’s presidency term, without any concessions. Any succeeded
foreign minister cannot change anything. As long as the Advisers of
Khamenei are the planners of Iran's foreign policy, the military
diplomacy will be the shape of Iran's foreign policy.
Zarif wrote in his memoirs published in 2013, entitled "Mr.
Ambassador” says "in diplomacy, you have to always smile ... but
never forget that you are talking with the enemy." He was very
realistic and regarding the nuclear agreement he thinks that the
agreement cannot be perfect, and an ideal deal for a party, it will
be catastrophic for the other party.
Zarif who was continued attacked from the both sides (Conservatives
in his country and some US officials)
Iranian conservatives described Zarif as a coward because he was
studying in the United States rather than defending his country
during the Iran-Iraq war of 1980-1988.
US Senator Tom Cotton, a Republican who opposes the nuclear deal,
wrote a tweet about Zarif in 2015, in which he twitted “you hid in
U.S. during Iran-Iraq war while peasants & kids were marched to
Zarif’s answer was by congratulating Senator Cotton on the birth of
An experienced diplomat will be missed not only in Iran but in all
global diplomacy and how much we need like him in our world today.
Director of IFIMES
(International Institute of the consultative status with the UN)
FEBRUARY 28, 2019
From WWI to www.
It is an
honour to present to our readers our esteemed colleague Professor
Anis Bajrektarević with his newly released book From WWI to www. 1919-2019 – Less Explored aspects
of Geopolitics, Technology, Energy and Geoeconomics.
This is his 7th
authored book (4th for the US publishers and the second for the New
York-based Addleton Academic Publishers). He is both teaching and
research professor on subjects such as the Geopolitics,
International and EU Law, Sustainable Development (institutions and
instruments), and Political systems.
On the subject Geopolitical Affairs alone, professor
has over 1,200 teaching hours at his university as well as in many
countries on all meridians. His writings are frequently published,
so far in over 50 countries of all five continents, and translated
in some 20 languages worldwide. He lives in Vienna, Austria.
For his previous book by the Addleton,
Geopolitics of Technology – Is There Life after
Facebook,former Austrian Foreign
Minister Peter Jankowitsch has said: “Insightful,
compelling and original, this book is an exciting journey through
the rocky field of geopolitics. It is also a big-thinking
exploration of the least researched aspects of the discipline, which
will leave no one indifferent. This book, written by an experienced
lawyer and a former career diplomat, cleverly questions how we see
the world, and acts as an eye opener.”
And, the World Security Network’s Senior Vice
President, rt. Brig general of the German Army, close aid to the
former NATO Gen-Secretary Manfred Wörner and author of 5 books on
security, Dieter Farwick has noted: "The
presence and future of our globalised, interwoven world has become
so difficult to comprehend that many people refrain from even trying
to understand it. It is the merit of Professor Anis Bajrektarevic to
fill this gap with excellent analyses brought together in his
brilliant book. It is a must read for those who want to get a better
understanding of the complex world and who want to contribute to a
better and safer world."
Commenting the previous book of professor, Dr.
Franz Fischler, EU Commissioner (1995–04), President of the
European Forum Apbach, have stated: ”The book of prof. Anis …
will help to understand better the security structures … and can
form a base for improvements in the interrelations between … diverse
continents.” On the same title Dr.
Cheng Yu Chin,
Director, EU-China Economics and Politics Institute noted: “Excellent
news – with this book – for those who argue that European
multilateralism is a right solution … out of a lasting crisis. This
fascinating comparative read further navigates those of academia and
practitioners who want to steer us towards stabile Europe and
We, briefly, introduce some of the views of experts
in international relations and history about the newly released book
of professor Bajrektarevic From WWI to
Endorsing his newest book, Yale university doctor,
philosophy of history professor Emanuel Paparella notes:
“A year or so ago I began reading and
pondering the political writings of Prof. Anis Bajrektarevic. Plenty
of food for thought, I am still reading them. What attracted me to
them was their invariable lucidity and coherence of thought
buttressed by well reasoned and well balanced logical arguments
culminating in insightful conclusions. This is quite rare nowadays
and when encountered it comes across like a breath of fresh air.
What prevails nowadays are political tracts that often espouse and
promote an ideology, often fanatically defended tooth and nail and
in- variably leading not to dialogue or symposiums but to diatribes
generating much heat and little light… To be convinced of all this,
all that the reader has to do is pick up Bajrektarevic book and
begin reading. One will not be disappointed.”
History never ended during the last century. Anis
Bajrektarevic offers a vivid, captivating take on the wrenching,
convulsive swirl of isms, campaigns, and cultural forces that have
punctuated global affairs over the last 100 years. It's useful to be
reminded of the regular episodes of tragic hubris that define our
Steve Clemons, Washington Editor at Large, The
Based on critical analysis and pungent observations
Professor Bajrektarevic provides an eye-opening contribution to the
question what has gone wrong in Europe in the last 100 years.
His book is an overdue and uncomfortable
counter-opinion to the prevailing view and conventional wisdom in
Hannes Androsch, long-time senior minister and former
Vice-Chancellor of Austria, Austrian Academy of Sciences (Member of
A complex study on geopolitical affairs, this book
gives us a key for understanding the origins of pan-European ideas,
and far beyond.
Professor successfully combines techniques of
political, historical and cultural analysis. This book may be of
interest to a wide range of scientists, politicians, diplomats,
journalists and specialists in geopolitics, international law,
geo-economics, energy policy, socio-political studies, and
technology security. In conclusion, timely, accurate, indispensable
Prof. Andrei V. Manoilo Lomonosov University, Moscow,
Political Science Faculty, Member of the Scientific Committee of the
Security Council of the Russian Federation
Comprehensive, focused and immediately useful,
From WWI to www. Geopolitics 100 Years Later is an articulate
and highly readable synthesis of current thinking on geopolitics in
a modern framework. This should be recommended reading for all
global leaders and academic professionals.
Dr. J.R. Reagan, Vice Dean at Endicott College of
International Studies(Woosong University)
Incisively provocative, "WW1 to www: Geopolitics 100
Years Later" is the definitive analysis of the last century of
Europe's transition to democratic liberalism. As an international
affairs specialist, I highly recommend it as a must-read for those
seeking an understanding of the complex of contradictions that is
the enigma of today's unified Europe.
Curtis J. Raynold, former Secretary of the UN
Secretary General's Advisory Board on Disarmament Matters.
By looking back at history and at different topics
and issues, author proposes a very deep and rich reflection on what
rendered possible European integration and what kind of limitations
it faces today. Every scholar, student or motivated citizen
interested in the future of international relations, concerned by
the current evolutions of politics in Europe and elsewhere, should
pick up Anis Bajrektarević’s book.
Olivier Costa, Research Professor, CNRS (Bordeaux,
France) / Director of Political Studies, College of Europe
Prof. Bajrektarevic challenges us to revisit
history in a new light and take another look at current global
policies and structures. Insightful and thought provoking writings
on global issues, past and present.
Brilliant, riveting, challenging! Professor
prompts us to think deeper about history and today’s global issues
in this wonderful book.
Dimitri Neos, Executive Director, International
Affairs Forum, Washington dc
Historically, so much has happened over the last 100
years, and technologically so much is taking place every single day
that we are living in a stage of constant alert. Our society has to
deal with too many consecutive and irreversible disruptions. In the
knowledge-based and scientific era, where nanotechnology, artificial
intelligence and robotics are available as advanced technological
tools of the Fourth Industrial Revolution, it seems unlikely that
humankind will be able to survive the idiosyncrasies of an
unpredictable IV World War.
Therefore, it is imperative to rethink a new modus
vivendi that responds to the realities and aspirations of the XXI
century. This book by Prof. A. Bajrektarevic is a timely and
in-depth reflection of our times.
Edna dos Santos Former UNCTAD Director and main co-author of the
Creative Economy Reports
Policy Advisor, United Nations Institute for
Training and Research, UNITAR
Finally, let us close with the author’s word:
Future of History
Throughout the most of human evolution both progress
as well as its horizontal transmission was extremely slow,
occasional and tedious a process. Well into the classic period of
Alexander the Macedonian and his glorious Alexandrian library, the
speed of our knowledge transfers – however moderate, analogue and
conservative – was still always surpassing snaillike cycles of our
breakthroughs. When our sporadic breakthroughs finally turned to be
faster than the velocity of their infrequent transmissions – that
very event marked a point of our departure.
Simply, our civilizations started to significantly
differentiate from each other in their respective techno-agrarian,
politico-military, ethno-religious and ideological, and economic
setups. In the eve of grand discoveries, that very event transformed
wars and famine from the low-impact and local, into the bigger and
cross-continental. Faster cycles of technological breakthroughs,
patents and discoveries than their own transfers, primarily occurred
on the Old continent.
That occurancy, with all its reorganizational
effects, radically reconfigured societies – to the point of
polarizing world onto the two: (anthropo-geographically inverted)
centar and periphery. This was a birth of Europe as we know it
For the past few centuries, peripheries lived fear
but dreamt a hope of Europeans – all for the sake of modern times.
From WWI to www. Is this modernity of internet age, with all
the suddenly reviled breakthroughs and their instant transmission,
now harbouring us in a bay of fairness, harmony and overall
Shall we stop short at the Kantian dream, or continue
to the Hobbesian realities and grasp for an objective, geopolitical
definition of our currents.
This book is my modest contribution to the most
pressing of all debates: Our common futures. I am happy if You see
it that way too.
FEBRUARY 25, 2019
Twinning Europe and Asia in Cyberspace
(the EU Legislation, ASEAN and its
Prof. Melda Kamil Ariadno and
Prof. Anis H Bajrektarević
While our troposphere is dangerously
polluted, one other space – that of intangible world, created by the
interconnected technology – follows the same pattern: a cyberspace.
Additionally, our cyberspace becomes increasingly brutalised by its
rapid monetisation and weaponisation. It mainly occurs through
privacy erosion. How to protect effectively individuals and their
fundamental human rights, and how to exercise a right for dignity
> The EU now offers a model legislation to its Member States, and by
its transformative power (spill-over) to the similar supranational
projects elsewhere (particularly ASEAN, but also the AU, OAS, SCO,
SAARC, LAS, etc.), and the rest of world.
Rules and regulations to protect
personal data do not trigger many sympathies. The corporate world
sees it as an unnecessary deterrent; as a limit to their growth –
more to pay and less or slower to yield, innovate and expand.
Governments would traditionally wish the rules should apply to every
societal stakeholder but themselves. And citizenry by large too
frequently behave benevolent, nearly careless whether their data is
harvested or safeguarded at all.
However, such legislation is needed today more than ever before. The
latest round of technological advancements was rapid, global and
uneven. No wonder that in the aftermath of the so-called
IT-revolutions, our world suffers from technological asymmetries:
assertive big corporations and omnipresent mighty governments on one
side and ordinary citizenry on the other. Even in the most advanced
democracies today – such as the EU, personal autonomy is at the huge
risk: Everyday simple, almost trivial, choices such as what to read,
which road to take, what to wear, eat, watch or listen are governed
(or at least filtered) by algorithms that run deep under the surface
of software and devices. Algoritmisation of ‘will’ is so corrosive
and deep that users are mostly unaware of the magnitude to which
daily data processing rules over their passions, drives and choices.
Clearly, technology of today serves not only a Weberian
predictability imperative – to further rationalise society. It makes
society less safe and its individuals less free.
Societies are yet to wake up to this (inconvenient) truth. In the
internet age of mobile, global and instant communications, people
tend to focus more on the ‘here-us-now’ trends: goods, services, and
experiences that the IT offers. Individuals are less interested on
the ways in which privacy is compromised by software, its
originators and devices – all which became an unnoticed but
indispensable part of modern life. Despite a wish of many to grasp
and know how data processing and harvesting affects them, population
at large yet has no appetite for details.
But, the trend is here to stay – a steady erosion of privacy: bigger
quantities of data are harvested about larger number of persons on a
daily, if not hourly basis. Corporations and the central state
authorities want more data and are less shy in how they obtain and
Prevention of the personal information misuse (PIM) —intended or
not—is the main reason the European Union (EU) introduced the new
set of provisions, as of May 2018. Hence, the General Data
Protection Regulation (GDPR) – as the legislation is known – is an
ambitious attempt to further regulate digital technology, especially
in respect to the private data protection. It is of course in
conformity with provisions of both the Universal and European
Charter of Human Rights, which hold the protection of human dignity
and privacy as an indispensable, fundamental human right.
The intention of legislator behind the GDPR is twofold: to regulate
domestically as well as to inspire and galvanise internationally.
The GDPR is meant to open a new chapter in the Internet’s history at
home, while creating, at the same time, a roadmap for other state
and corporate sector actors beyond the EU. The challenge is clear:
to reconcile the rights of individuals to data protection with the
legitimate interests of business and government.
For the rest of the world, the GDPR should be predictive,
inspirational and eventually obligational. Lack of acting now could
open a space for the abuse of power – be it for illegitimate
corporate or authoritarian gains of the hidden societal actors. In
such a negative scenario – on a long run – losers are all.
Historically, victimisation of individuals (through constant
suspension of liberties and freedoms) ends up in a state or
corporate fascism, and that one in a self-destruction of society as
COMPREHENSIVE LEGISLATION AS POWERFUL DETERRENT
The Internet age exposes individuals in an unprecedented ways to the
domestic or foreign predatory forces. Everybody is tempted to
participate in digital economy or digital social interaction. This
cannot go without revealing personal information to large state or
non-state entities of local or international workings. If the field
is not regulated, the moment such information leaves its proprietor,
it can be easily and cheaply stored, analysed, further disseminated
and shared without any knowledge or consent of it originator.
So far, neither market forces nor the negative publicity has
seriously hindered companies and governments from tapping on and
abusing this immense power. Nothing but a bold and comprehensive
legislation is efficient deterrent, which stops the worst misuse.
Only the legal provisions to protect personal data may serve a
purpose of special and general prevention:
Be it in case a local or transnational corporate greed, governmental
negligent or malicious official, or the clandestine interaction of
the two (such as unauthorised access to personal phone and Internet
records, as well as the unverified or inaccurate health and related
data used to deny person from its insurance, loan, or work).
While totally absent elsewhere, early European attempts to legislate
a comprehensive regulatory system of personal data protection have
tired its best. Still, the EU’s Data Protection Directive of 1995
was falling short on several deliverables. (It was partly due to
early stage of internet development, when the future significance of
cyberspace was impossible to fully grasp and anticipate). Hence,
this instrument failed to comprehensively identify the wrongdoings
it sought to prevent, pre-empt and mitigate. The 1995 text also
suffered from a lack of (logical and legal) consistency when it came
to directing and instructing the individual EU member states (EU MS)
on how to domesticate data privacy and promulgate it the body of
their respective national legislation. Finally, the GDPR solves both
of these problems.
This instrument of 2018 clearly stipulates on discrimination
combating (including the politically or religiously motived
hate-contents), authentication-related identity theft, fraud,
financial crime, reputational harm (social networks mobbing,
harassments and intimidation). Moreover, the European Commission
(EC) has stated that the GDPR will strengthen the MS economies by
recovering people’s trust in the security and sincerity of digital
commerce, which has suffered lately of a numerous high-profile data
breaches and infringements.
However, the most important feature (and a legal impact) of the
GDPR is its power of being a
This means that individuals can invoke it before the MS
courts without any reference to the positive national legislation.
That guaranties both speed and integrity to this supranational
instrument – no vocatio leagis and no unnecessary
domestication of the instrument through national constituencies.
Conclusively, the 2018 instrument is further strengthened by an extra-territorial reach – a notion that make is
applicable to any entity that operates in the EU, even if entity is
not physically situated in the EU.
This practically means that each entity, in every sector and of
every size, which processes personal data of the EU citizens, must
comply with the GDPR. It obliges governments and their services (of
national or sub-national levels); health, insurance and bank
institutes; variety of Internet and mobile telephony service
providers; media outlets and other social data gathering
enterprises; labour, educational and recreational entities – in
short, any subject that collects digital information about
The GDPR further strengthens accountability principle. The state and
commercial actors hold direct and objective responsibility for a
personal data collecting, storing and processing (including its
drain or dissemination). Clearly, this EU instrument strengthens the
right for information privacy (as a part of elementary human right –
right to privacy) by protecting individuals from misappropriation of
their personal data for a harvesting, monetisation or
(socio-political) weaponisation purpose.
Namely, the GDPR gives individuals the right to request a transfer
of their personal data (account and history information) from one
commercial entity to another (e.g. from one bank or phone provider
to another). Another right is to request – at short notice and for
an unspecified reason – the commercial enterprise to stop both the
data collection and the marketing dissemination, or to demand
clarification on a marketing methods and nature of services
provided. This instrument also offers individuals the right to
request that their personal data are deleted (being zipped and sent
back to its proprietor beforehand) – as stipulated in art.17 (the
right to be forgotten).
The GDPR calls upon all operating entities to hire a data protection
officer as to ensure full compliance with the new rules. It also
invites all data collecting entities to conduct impact assessments –
in order to determine scope frequency, outreach and consequences of
personal data harvesting and processing. (For example, if certain
entity wished to introduce biometric authentication for its
employees and visitors entering daily its premises, it would need at
first to run an assessment – a study that answers on the necessity
and impact of that new system as well as the exposures it creates
and possible risk mitigation measures.)
The GDPR obliges every entity that gathers data to minimise amount
and configuration of personal data they harvest, while maximizing
the security of that data. (For instance, if the auto dealer or
travel agency requires potential customers to fill out the form to
request a price quote, the form can ask only for information
relevant to the product or services in question.)
The new legislation also mandates data gathering entities to notify
the authorities – without any delay – whenever they suspect or
witness a personal data breach. Conclusively, the GDPR obliges
entities to present the public with clean and through information
about the personal data they harvest and process—and clearly why
they do so.
On the sanction side, the GDPR supports the regulators with new
enforcement tools, including the norm setting, monitoring of and
enforcement of compliance. For a non-compliance, the instrument
prescribes steep fines.
To answer adequately the accountability standards enacted by this EU
legislation will certainly invite large data gathering entities to
bear significant investments. However, for the sake of credibility
outreach and efficiency, they will have stimuli to introduce the new
procedures and systems within the EU, but also beyond – wherever
their operations are present. Complementary to it, the GDPR
stipulates that if an entity transfers personal data out of the EU,
it must safeguard that the data is handled in the new location the
same way like within the EU. By this simple but far-reaching and
effective spill over notion, the standards embodied by the GDPR will
be delivered to the rest of the world. Hence, this instrument is not
(only) an inner code of conduct that brings an outer appeal; it is a
self-evolving and self-replicating standard of behaviour for our
common (digital) future.
ASEAN, INDO-PACIFIC, ASIA
It is obvious that the stipulations of the
GDPR would serve well interests of Republic of Indonesia (RI). That
is actually in line with a very spirit of the 1945 Constitution,
which obliges the state to protect, educate and prosper the
Indonesian people. This supreme state act clearly proclaims that the
respecting individual personal data is resting upon the two
principles of the Pancasila. Namely these of; Fair and Civilized
Humanity. Mutual grant and observance of everyone’s elementary
rights is an essence of freedom and overall advancement of society.
The government, with the mandate of its
authority to protect the public (public trust doctrine), must manage
the personal data fairly and accountably. The GDPR also encourages
the formation of an independent personal data protection supervisory
institution so that it can correct the policies and rules of the
bureaucracy and state administration to act accordingly in managing
the personal data of the population. Moreover, every democratic
government should be more proactive in protecting society when comes
to the management of the personal data of its residents.
Interestingly, the Indonesian legislation
already has instruments that follow notion of the GDPR. Thus, the
Law No. 11 on Information and Electronic Transactions of 2008 (by a
letter of its article 2) emphasizes the principle of
extra-territorial jurisdiction. (In this particular case, it is
related to the cross-border transactions. Indonesia should always
safeguard its national interests: the RI jurisdiction stretches on
any legal action that apply in Indonesia and/or carried out by
Indonesian citizens. But it also applies to legal actions carried
out outside of Indonesian jurisdiction by Indonesian citizens or a
foreigner legally residing in RI, or Indonesian legal entities and
foreign legal entities that produce legal effects in Indonesia.
This of course assumes the very nature of a
use of Information Technology for Electronic Information and
Electronic Transactions, which can be cross-territorial and even
universal. What is assumed by this Law as "harming the interests of
Indonesia" goers beyond pure national economic interests, protecting
strategic data, national dignity, defense and security, the state of
sovereignty, citizens, and Indonesian legal entities.)
When comes to the Right to be Forgotten (Right
for Privacy and Right for Dignity), Indonesia must see it as a
principle of real protection that is in the best interests of data
owners. Further on, such a right should be strengthened by the
principle of 'without undue delay', as to avoid the administrative
obligation to request a court decision to uphold the right. On a
long run, it will surely benefit businesses far more than the
personal data originators themselves.
LEADING BY EXAMPLE
In line with the Right to Portability Data
elaborated by the GDPR, Indonesia also needs to closer examine the
EU instruments. Hence, the EU Regulation No.910 / 2014 concerning
electronic identification, authentication and trust services (eIDAS)
offers an idea how to harmonize the provision of digital identity
and personal data in realm of electronic communications. (Electronic
identification and authentication is a technology process that has
an economic value. Such a business opportunity should be reconciled
with a safety and security standards when comes to use of and
traffic with of personal data for commercial interests.)
Regarding security, Indonesia must immediately
have a clear policy on Cryptography to protect personal data.
Cryptography is a double-use process; it can be utilised for
civilian purposes, but it can also be used for the vital national
interests, such as defense and security. Therefore, privacy and
cybersecurity protection is a complementary concept of protection.
Holistic approach strengthens the both rights of individuals as well
as protection of national interests, rather than it ever conflicts
one over the other.
Finally, the ASEAN Declaration of Human Rights
in its article 21 stipulates that the protection of personal data is
elementary part of Privacy. As one of the founding members, a
country that even hosts the Organisation’s HQ, Indonesia must
observe the notions of this Human Rights Charter. That is the
additional reason why RI has to lead by example.
The EU’s GDPR clearly encourages a paradigm
shift within the public services and government administration
services on national, subnational and supranational level for all
the ASEAN member states. It is to respect the fundamental freedoms
and liberties, a quality that will shield population from random and
ill-motivated arbitrary judgments of individual rights under the
pretext of public interest.
Indonesia and ASEAN can take a lot of learning
from the dynamics of the EU’s regulation of GDPR and e-IDAS as to
its own benefit – to foster its own security and to elevate a trust
in regional e-commerce within the ASEAN economic zone. Since the
ASEAN (if combined) is the 4th largest world economy,
this is a call of future that already starts now. After all the EU
and ASEAN – each from its side of Eurasia – are twin grand projects
of necessity, passion and vision.
Naturally, for anyone outside, Indonesia and
ASEAN are already seen as the world's e-commerce hub, of pivotal
importance far beyond the Asia-Pacific theatre.
Vienna/Jakarta 28 DEC 2018
About the authors:
Melda Kamil Ariadno(SH,
LLM, PhD) is a
Professor of International Law at the Faculty of Law Universitas
Indonesia, Jakarta. She is currently the Dean of the Faculty of Law
Universitas Indonesia and the Head of Center for Sustainable Ocean
Policy. She obtained her bachelor’s degree from Universitas
Indonesia in 1992. Then, she received both her LL.M. and Ph.D. from
the University of Washington in 1995 and 2011, respectively. She has
served as legalexpert for several governmental
bodies among others the Ministry of Marine Affairs and Fisheries.
Prof. Anis H Bajrektarevicis chairperson and professor in international law
and global political studies, Vienna, Austria. He has authored six
books (for American and European publishers) and numerous articles
on, mainly, geopolitics energy and technology. For the past decades,
he has over 1,200 hours of teaching on the subject International
Law. Two of his books are related to cyber space, cyber law and
Professor is editor of the NY-based GHIR (Geopolitics, History and
Intl. Relations) journal, and editorial board member of several
similar specialized magazines on three continents.
book is to be realised in New York in December.
Mads Jacobsen Mads is an intern at PCRC. Mads Jacobsen is from Denmark and is currently
pursuing his Master's degree in 'Development and International Relations' at
University of Bihac, Faculty of Education,
Department of English Language and Literature - undergraduate
University of Banja Luka, Faculty of Philology, Department of English Language
and Literature - graduate study Rakesh Krishnan Simha
New Zealand-based journalist and foreign affairs analyst. According to him, he
writes on stuff the media distorts, misses or ignores.
Rakesh started his career in 1995 with New Delhi-based Business World magazine,
and later worked in a string of positions at other leading media houses such as
India Today, Hindustan Times, Business Standard and the Financial Express, where
he was the news editor.
He is the Senior Advisory Board member of one of the fastest growing Europe’s
foreign policy platforms: Modern Diplomacy.
Damiel Scalea Daniele Scalea, geopolitical
analyst, is Director-general of IsAG (Rome Institute of Geopolitics) and Ph.D.
Candidate in Political studies at the Sapienza University, Rome. Author of three
books, is frequent contributor and columnist to various Tv-channels and
Alessio Stilo, Research Associate at Institute of High
Studies in Geopolitics and Auxiliary Sciences (IsAG), Rome, Italy, and Ph.D.
researcher at University of Padova, is IMN Country Representative in Italy.
Tomislav Jakić Foreign Policy Advisor to former Croatian
President Stjepan Mesić
Zlatko Hadžidedić Graduate of the London School of Economics,
prof. Zlatko Hadžidedićis a prominent thinker,
prolific author of numerous books, and indispensable political figure of the
former Yugoslav socio-political space in 1990s, 2000s and 2010s.
Mr. Nicola Bilotta Nicola Bilotta has a BA and a MA
in History from Universitŕ degli Studi di Milano and a MSc in Economic History
from the London School of Economics. He works as a Global Finance Research
Assistant at The Banker (Financial Times) and collaborates as an external
researcher at ISAG (Istituto di Alti Studi di Geopolitica e Scienze Ausiliari)
Markus Wauran Date and Place of Birth: April 22, 1943 – Amurang,
North Sulawesi, IndonesiaEducation: Bachelor in Public
Writer was a member of the House of Representatives
of Indonesia (DPR/MPR-RI) period of 1987-1999, and Chairman of
Committee X, cover Science and Technology, Environment and National
Development Planning (1988-1997).
Currently as Obsever of Nuclear for peace.
Sooyoung Hu Attached to the US-based Berkeley University,
Sooyoung Hu is a scholar at its Political Science and Peace and Conflict
Studies Department. Miss Hu focuses on international relations, international
organizations and its instruments.
Senahid LAVIĆ Nizar Visram Nizar
Visramis a Ottawa-based free-lance writer from Zanzibar, Tanzania.
Recently retired Senior lecturer on Development studies, he extensively
publishes in over 50 countries on 4 continents. He can be reached at nizar1941(at)gmail.com.
Robert Leonard Rope
He studied at the University of
He lives in: San Francisco, California: San Francisco, California, USA
Dragan Bursac, Journalist
Dr. Enis OMEROVIĆ
Max Hess Max Hess is a senior political risk analyst
with the London-based AEK international, specializing in Europe and Eurasia.
Ananya Bordoloi Ananya Bordoloi is a Malaysia based researcher in the fields
of international relations, global governance and human rights. Author has
previously worked with Amnesty International in research and data collection
capacity, and for a publishing company as a pre-editor.
Robert J. Burrowes has a lifetime commitment to understanding and
ending human violence. He has done extensive research since 1966 in an effort to
understand why human beings are violent and has been a nonviolent activist since
1981. He is the author of ‘Why
Violence?’His email address is firstname.lastname@example.org
his website is here.
Amel Ouchenane is
a member of the organization of Security and Strategic studies in Algeria. She
is also Research Assistant at the Idrak Research Center for Studies and
Ms. Ouchenane was researcher at Algiers University from 2011 to 2018.
(Department of International relations and African studies).
Dr. Nafees Ahmad Ph. D., LL.M, Faculty of Legal Studies, South Asian University
(SAARC)-New Delhi, Nafees Ahmad is an Indian national who holds a Doctorate
(Ph.D.) in International Refugee Law and Human Rights. Author teaches and writes
on International Forced Migrations, Climate Change Refugees & Human Displacement
Refugee, Policy, Asylum, Durable Solutions and Extradition issues.
Sinta Stepani International relations specialists
based in Săo Paulo, Brazil.
Professor of the World History
at the Geneva School of Diplomacy and International Relations. He is
also senior anlaysit at the Geneva
International Peace Research Institute (GIPRI)
Juan Martin González Cabańas
Juan Martin González Cabańas
is a senior researcher and analyst at the Dossier Geopolitico
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