Ukraine to Taiwan: “Pole Wars” or “Order of Chaos”

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The United States (US), which seeks to build new regional alliances through crises,  uses and fuels all kinds of conflicts of interest between the countries that are candidates and claimants to the multipolar world.

The dynamic crisis line stretching from Ukraine to Taiwan refers to an open-ended process for the whole world. This uncertainty process, in which the scenarios of the Third World War and the discourses of the “New Cold War” are frequently voiced and where more concerns prevail, undoubtedly raises the questions of “where are we heading to?” and “what accounts underlie all of this?”

The world order is changing

Surely, it is not a coincidence that all these developments have accelerated with the 46th  president of the US. President Joe Biden is part of the process here, and he’s just playing a dangerous role. To put it more concretely, the role that Biden has assumed through the discourse of “democrats-autocrats” in accordance with his “democratic” identity stands out with its “accelerator”, “aggressive” and “polarized” dimension in the operation carried out after the 9/11 against the existing-potential powers that are described as rivals/enemies of the US hegemony. In other words, we can say that Biden is busy with naming the definitions made by his predecessors George W. Bush, Barack Obama, and Donald Trump.

At this point, the following concepts emerged: Crisis, identity, generation, siege, corridor, resources, fear, and pole. All of these are intertwined and lead to a single door: The power struggle. The name and definition of the international system under reconstruction has been shaped around these words and concepts. When it is considered that, this power struggle from the center of Washington, two claims and two main actors emerges: the US, which aims for a “unipolar” system, and the “others” who want a “multipolar” world.

The US wants to be the “savior” again

In this context, the US is aware that it will lose in the face of Eurasian-centered challenges without maintaining control in Europe and in the Pacific, which constitute the two main pillars of the global power struggle. The “Russian-Ukrainian War” and the possible “China-Taiwan War”, as well as the escalating crisis in this context, point to precisely this goal. The US wants to realize its global hegemony with the “ two empires of fear” that it has launched all over the world and to put itself in the role of “savior” once again; just like during the Second World War and its aftermath, in the Cold War.

In this respect, it is noteworthy that “Russian fear/threat” has come to the fore on the European side and “Chinese fear/threat” in the Asia-Pacific region in the recent period. Thus, in the new US strategy, it is emphasized to end Germany’s claims of “multipolarity” in Europe through the “fear/threat of Russia” and even more to turn it into a “strong ally”. On the other hand, it seems that the US wants to bring these countries to Germany’s position by preventing the existing-possible claims of India and Japan in the Asia-Pacific context through the “fear/threat of China”.

To bring “new world order” out of chaos.

Chaos underlies the US presence and power. This is the reason why crises that tend to spread on a global basis and give the appearance of devastating chaos. The US wants to establish the new world order within the framework of the logic of “destroy and rebuild it according to itself.” Because the US sees the system established after the Second World War as an obstacle to itself. Therefore, it is necessary to evaluate the current crises not only in the context of geographies, but also in the form of a war against the established, generally accepted values, law, and institutions of the international system.

The basis of the US’ strategy of achieving results through crises lies in the fact that the policy of building hegemony based on the understanding of “soft power” against Europe and even partly Russia (in the context of energy diplomacy) especially China, has lost the advantages it has provided.

Thus, Washington is both forcing these actors into a power struggle at the point where it is strongest and pulling them into a costly area by pushing them to take up arms through “new threats”. Thus, by depriving them of soft power sources, it wants to put them in the position of revisionist/aggressor  states and start a new alliance process against them. In doing so, it seeks to achieve a less costly result by following the “proxy war” method and to strengthen its economy by selling more weapons.

The US, which seeks to build new regional alliances through crises, also uses and fuels all kinds of conflicts of interest between the countries that are candidates and claimants to the multipolar world.

The two main addresses of the crises: Russia and China.

These issues underlie the tendency of the US to increase the intensity and dose of its operations aimed at the image of Russia and especially China over the crises in the recent period, to deepen and expand in the geographical-political-economic-security fields. With this controlled, planned crisis policy, the US aims to shock these actors into irrational actors, and thus revealing the limits of both actors’ power, aggressive/aggressor faces, a network of fragile/weak relationships. It wants to show the whole world that they cannot be rivals/alternatives in the construction of the international system, that it is the solely power.

With this policy, Washington forces these actors into a contradiction based on discourse-action and tries to put them in the position of unreliable actors. Beijing, which until yesterday stood out with its soft power, is against violence and sanctions, let alone war, and the recent announcement that it will resort to sanction weapon and displaying an aggressive power position is important in this respect, although it describes it as a defense.

The US turns out to be profitable

The US seems to be starting to get the results from this crisis policy. Thus, now, there is an image that the network of relations that Russia and China have been building with a noose until yesterday has begun to loosen rapidly and that they face the threat of extinction if they do not take wise steps.

The fact that the US has formed a “bloc of sanctions” at this point accelerates the process of isolation and aggression of these two powers. The resistance-quests of these powers, which have become isolated and aggressive, towards the siege that has formed around them seem to become more inextricable with an extended-deepened “war of attrition” through existing-possible crises.

The destruction caused by this “indirect/proxy war” on the deterrence and prestige of these actors, in which the multidimensional, hybrid war methods initiated by the US against the Russia-China duo are becoming more effective day by day, clearly points to a near future where direct war methods will be on the agenda. Especially, it should not be ignored that China is gradually becoming involved in the Third World War and Nuclear War threats that Russia raised until yesterday.

Ukraine-Taiwan crises

The US is the sole winner of the Russian-Ukrainian War. Because with the Ukrainian War, it has seized an important opportunity to consolidate its European pillar, and therefore its leadership within the West, and in this context, it has re-established its authority over North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) and the European Union (EU). So that the Germany-centered EU is turning into a legionary power of the US in the western hemisphere every day through the “fear of Russia”. Thus, while the US has reduced costs with the EU in its goal of global hegemony, on the other hand, it has made it more dependent on itself and has largely pacified an opponent that challenged itself under the name of “multipolarity” discourse.

The US move on Taiwan, on the other hand, is aiming at an even more divided/fragmented and isolated China against Beijing, which pursues a “One-China Policy”. Therefore, the Taiwan crisis emerges as a much bigger-deeper dimensional test of Beijing. China’s possible invasion of Taiwan could trigger even bigger crises. The fact that no indication has been received from the Beijing administration, which has suffered a serious loss of deterrence and prestige, that it will pursue a more cold-blooded policy, obviously shows that it has come to the US’ game; just like in the case of Russia.

Consequently, the current process is a war of hegemony between the US and its rival actors, a power struggle conducted around the discourses of “unipolarity”, multipolarity”, “democracies”, “autocracies”. The US is trying to respond to this systemic challenge through crises with new regional alliances-proxies based on its existential mission and aims for a unipolar system.

The geographical distribution of crises and the “regional/global threats” highlighted here, as well as the methods and tools used, point to this. The future of a new world order through chaos largely depends on the reaction of the “others”. It is a very difficult possibility that this reaction will be “soft”. Because these powers, which wanted to end the US hegemony through “soft power” until yesterday, are clearly facing a big game that they did not expect. It seems that the future of the new world order will once again be determined by the rimland and corridors.

This article was published by Anadolu Agency (AA) on August 11, 2022.

Prof. Dr. Mehmet Seyfettin EROL
1969 Dörtyol-Hatay doğumlu olan Prof. Dr. Mehmet Seyfettin Erol, Boğaziçi Üniversitesi (BÜ) Siyaset Bilimi ve Uluslararası İlişkiler Bölümü’nden 1993 yılında mezun oldu. BÜ’de 1995 yılında Yüksek Lisans çalışmasını tamamlayan Erol, aynı yıl BÜ’de doktora programına kabul edildi. Ankara Üniversitesi’nde doktorasını 2005’de tamamlayan Erol, 2009 yılında “Uluslararası İlişkiler” alanında doçent ve 2014 yılında da Profesörlük unvanlarını aldı. 2000-2006 tarihleri arasında Avrasya Stratejik Araştırmaları Merkezi (ASAM)’nde görev yapan Erol, 2009 yılında Stratejik Düşünce Enstitüsü’nün (SDE) Kurucu Başkanlığı ve Yönetim Kurulu Üyeliği görevlerinde bulundu. Uluslararası Strateji ve Güvenlik Araştırmaları Merkezi (USGAM)’nin de kurucu başkanı olan Prof. Erol, Yeni Türkiye Stratejik Araştırmalar Merkezi (YTSAM) Uluslararası İlişkiler Enstitüsü Başkanlığını da yürütmektedir. Prof. Erol, Gazi Üniversitesi Stratejik Araştırmalar Merkezi (GAZİSAM) Müdürlüğü görevinde de bulunmuştur. 2007 yılında Türk Dünyası Yazarlar ve Sanatçılar Vakfı “Türk Dünyası Hizmet Ödülü”nü alan Prof. Erol, akademik anlamdaki çalışmaları ve medyadaki faaliyetlerinden dolayı çok sayıda ödüle layık görülmüştür. Bunlardan bazıları şu şekilde sıralanabilir: 2013 yılında Çağdaş Demokratlar Birliği Derneği tarafından “Yılın Yazılı Medya Ödülü”, 2015 yılında “APM 10. Yıl Hizmet Ödülü”, Türkiye Yazarlar Birliği tarafından “2015 Yılın Basın-Fikir Ödülü”, Anadolu Köy Korucuları ve Şehit Aileleri “2016 Gönül Elçileri Medya Onur Ödülü”, Yörük Türkmen Federasyonları tarafından verilen “2016 Türkiye Onur Ödülü”. Prof. Erol’un 15 kitap çalışması bulunmaktadır. Bunlardan bazılarının isimleri şu şekildedir: “Hayalden Gerçeğe Türk Birleşik Devletleri”, “Türkiye-AB İlişkileri: Dış Politika ve İç Yapı Sorunsalları”, “Avrasya’da Yeni Büyük Oyun”, “Türk Dış Politikasında Strateji Arayışları”, “Türk Dış Politikasında Güvenlik Arayışları”, “Türkiye Cumhuriyeti-Rusya Federasyonu İlişkileri”, “Sıcak Barışın Soğuk Örgütü Yeni NATO”, “Dış Politika Analizinde Teorik Yaklaşımlar: Türk Dış Politikası Örneği”, “Krizler ve Kriz Yönetimi: Aktörler ve Örnek Olaylar”, “Kazakistan” ve “Uluslararası İlişkilerde Güncel Sorunlar”. 2002’den bu yana TRT Türkiye’nin sesi ve TRT Radyo 1 (Ankara Radyosu) “Avrasya Gündemi”, “Stratejik Bakış”, “Küresel Bakış”, “Analiz”, “Dosya”, “Haber Masası”, “Gündemin Öteki Yüzü” gibi radyo programlarını gerçekleştirmiş olan Prof. Erol, TRT INT televizyonunda 2004-2007 yılları arasında Arayış, 2007-2010 yılları arasında Kanal A televizyonunda “Sınır Ötesi” ve 2020-2021’de de BBN TÜRK televizyonunda “Dış Politika Gündemi” programlarını yaptı. 2012-2018 yılları arasında Millî Gazete’de “Arayış” adlı köşesinde dış politika yazıları yayımlanan Prof. Erol’un ulusal-uluslararası medyada çok sayıda televizyon, radyo, gazete, haber siteleri ve dergide uzmanlığı dahilinde görüşlerine de başvurulmaktadır. 2006-2018 yılları arasında Gazi Üniversitesi Uluslararası İlişkiler Bölümü’nde ve Ankara Üniversitesi Latin Amerika Araştırmaları Merkezi’nde (LAMER) de dersler veren Prof. Erol, 2018’den bu yana Ankara Hacı Bayram Veli Üniversitesi Uluslararası İlişkiler Bölümü’nde öğretim üyesi olarak akademik kariyerini devam ettirmektedir. Çok sayıda dergi ve gazetede yazıları-değerlendirmeleri yayımlanan; Avrasya Dosyası, Stratejik Analiz, Stratejik Düşünce, Gazi Bölgesel Çalışmalar, The Journal of SSPS, Karadeniz Araştırmaları, gibi akademik dergilerde editörlük faaliyetlerinde bulunan Prof. Erol, Bölgesel Araştırmalar, Uluslararası Kriz ve Siyaset Araştırmaları, Gazi Akademik Bakış, Ege Üniversitesi Türk Dünyası İncelemeleri, Demokrasi Platformu dergilerinin editörlüklerini hali hazırda yürütmektedir. 2016’dan bu yana Ankara Kriz ve Siyaset Araştırmaları Merkezi (ANKASAM) Kurucu Başkanı olarak çalışmalarını devam ettiren Prof. Erol, evli ve üç çocuk babasıdır.