The West may eventually rebound from the current financial crisis and return to more or less its normal baseline. On the other hand, it may not; this could well be the beginning of a permanent decline, and the end of Western ascendancy. It’s still too early to tell.
To use an analogy from evolutionary biology, the last four hundred years — the heyday of Western Civilization — have been characterized by “punctuated equilibrium”. Decades of relative stability and coherence are punctuated by sudden bursts of chaos, violence, turbulence, and irrationality. Each discontinuity that breaks the equilibrium has its own interior logic, and after it runs its course, another stable period begins. The punctuation resolves into a new equilibrium based on an emergent balance of forces and political entities, different from the one that preceded the upheaval.
For Western Civilization, the punctuations of the last 250 years may be defined as follows:
|1789-1815||The French Revolution and the Napoleonic Wars. The new equilibrium was ushered in by the Congress of Vienna with Metternich as the architect.|
|1848||The year of revolutions. In the aftermath of 1848 the two great ideological strains of modern times — socialism and nationalism — were born. The equilibrium that followed was ultimately unstable, and led to the cataclysms of the 20th century.|
|1914-1945||The Great Wars. Our most recent equilibrium was structured by the formation of the United Nations and the long standoff between the United States and the Soviet Union.|
The second of these equilibria — from 1848 to 1914 — was the peak of European power and cultural influence, the great flowering of Western Civilization that spread across the globe.
The most recent punctuation, the one that ended in 1945, severely weakened the cultural fabric of the West, guaranteeing that we would eventually face the next crisis. A new discontinuity seems to be upon us now, a perfect storm formed by convergent political, cultural, and economic winds.
When the next punctuation has run its course, there’s no guarantee that the West will retain its ascendancy in the aftermath. As Conservative Swede has often pointed out, there are manifold signs of spiritual and civilizational enervation in all Western countries. All of our political systems have been infected in varying degrees by the postmodern Marxist virus that manifests itself as Political Correctness and Multiculturalism.
This blog focuses on the struggle of the West against Islam, but Islam is the symptom, not the disease itself. Islamic culture is a parasite upon the wealth and benignity of Western Civilization, and cannot survive without it. The petrodollars are a large part of the problem, but the main issue is a severely diminished cultural resistance that grants the Islamic virus an opportunity to take hold throughout the West.
When the West falls, Islam will fall with it. The civilization that rises to replace us will not share our Multicultural fastidiousness, and will deal with the Muslims in whatever manner seems expedient when the time comes.
And who will our replacements be?
New Delhi, 12 Nov. (AKI) — India test-fired a nuclear-capable missile Wednesday from the eastern state of Orissa, defence sources said, quoted by media reports.
The submarine-based ballistic missile K-15, has a range of up to 700 kilometres and is considered a medium-range missile. It can easily reach targets deep inside neighbouring Pakistan and China.
The test was carried out from the Integrated Testing Range at Chandipur, 200 kilometres northeast of Bhubaneswar, capital of Orissa, reports said.
Recently, India Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and US President George W. Bush reached a bilateral agreement on civilian nuclear cooperation.
The deal lifts the US moratorium on nuclear trade with India, provides US assistance to India’s civilian nuclear energy programme, and expands US-Indian cooperation in energy and satellite technology.
India is a powerhouse, with only a slightly smaller population than China’s and at least as much technical competence. Its more politically open society gives it an advantage that China cannot match.
China is worried about India, and with good reason. With the likely departure of the United States from its traditional dominant role in the region, the Indians and the Japanese are co-operating with each other to their mutual advantage. According to Asia News:
Beijing Worried by India-Japan Space Alliance
By the end of November Tokyo and New Delhi will finalise a deal reached in October by their prime ministers, Taro Aso and Manmohan Singh. The agreement calls for co-operation between the two countries’ space agencies, ISRO and JAXA, in various fields, ranging from coastal protection and defence to natural disaster monitoring and anti-terrorism.
New Delhi (AsiaNews/Agencies) — India and Japan have signed an agreement to increase co-operation between their respective space programmes. It follows guidelines agreed to by the two sides at their annual summit meeting held in Tokyo on 22 October when prime ministers Taro Aso and Manmohan Singh signed a joint declaration that included an “action plan with specific measures to advance security cooperation”.
By the end of this month Tokyo and New Delhi will lay down the principles of co-operation between the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) and the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA).
Several fields of activity will fall within the initiative, ranging from coastal protection and defence to environmental disaster monitoring and anti-terrorism.
The deal comes at a time when the two space agencies are coping with different challenges. ISRO is getting pictures of the moon sent by the Chandrayaan spacecraft (22 October launch pictured), a success much celebrated by new Delhi. By contrast, JAXA is sailing through rough waters, still unsure about its funding. What is more for the first time however the deal marks a departure for Japan which is now considering deployment of hitherto excluded space assets for national security.
The existing satellite-based multinational weather and disaster management system depends upon signatories’ willingness to accept rapid surveillance satellites tasking. But it can also transcend simple weather information.
The ISRO-JAXA deal “could be seen by some as a sensitive undertaking with obvious dual use possibilities which Japan will attempt to handle with great care,” said Lance Gatling, head of Tokyo-based Gatling Associates, which closely monitors JAXA and the Japanese space program.
The ISR0-JAXA agreement has in fact a component about defence-related use of missile and satellite technology, including the possibility of jointly developing ballistic missile defence (BMD) technology like that of the United States from which only Japan now benefits.
The new system would involve developing and deploying a new generation of surveillance satellites to monitor disasters and security threats.
India in particular has never been shy about its intention to increase satellite surveillance of all Chinese military activities, especially along its border with China.
For this reason the ISR0-JAXA deal is also worrying China, the third major player in Asia’s rush to space and the region’s major military power.
Until now Japan had a space security agreement with Australia. But the Bush administration has signalled its support for closer Indian-Japanese co-operation to counter China. And this has triggered heightened concern in Beijing.
One of the things I like about the lame-duck Bush administration is that it is doing its best to help our allies in Asia survive what is almost certain to be their virtual abandonment by President Obama. When Mr. Obama and his team kill or maim missile defense, gut the development of new weapons systems, cut the defense budget by a quarter, and route the money into a “civilian security corps”, you can bet that our friends on the Pacific Rim will get the short end of the deal.
But India seems to be confident that it can handle its role in the Brave New World, and is willing to extend its defensive umbrella to include the petroleum-rich nations of the Persian Gulf. According to AKI:
India: PM Vows to Defend Tiny Qatar ‘If Needed’
New Delhi, 12 Nov. (AKI/Asian Age) — In a clear indication that India’s strategic sphere of influence is rapidly expanding beyond its immediate neighbourhood, the Indian government has agreed “to go to the rescue of Qatar, if Qatar requires it.”
In marked contrast to the previous government, blocking US-backed moves by his deputy L.K. Advani to station Indian troops in Afghanistan, persistent efforts since 2005 by the tiny, energy-rich Gulf nation of Qatar to get a security deal bore fruit when Prime Minister Manmohan Singh agreed to protect Qatar’s considerable assets — petroleum and gas fields and sea lanes — if they were in peril.
“We will go to the rescue of Qatar if Qatar requires it, in whatever form it takes,” an official said as Singh concluded a visit to the energy rich Gulf state, even as an Indian naval vessel thwarted attempts by pirates to hijack a vessel off the pirate infested waters off the coast of Somalia.
The Indian Navy has been deployed off the Gulf of Aden for a little over a month.
Qatar has been most persistent, and being a tiny country, the energy rich nation was concerned about its own security, despite a large US base, strategically placed at the narrow mouth of the Strait of Hormuz, from where Washington monitors nuclear Iran, an unstable Iraq and China’s growing footprint in the region, especially in developing the Pakistani port city of Gwadar.
Officials downplayed the agreement’s significance, saying it would not be a precursor to similar agreements with other friendly Gulf countries like Oman, saying: “India will not station troops in any foreign country. We don’t want to fight other people’s wars in foreign countries. This agreement is Qatar-specific.”
The landmark security pact is however part of a larger area of cooperation where India and Qatar will work together to fight terrorism and cooperate on tackling transnational crime. A greater Indian naval presence could be seen in the Gulf as US troops shift their focus to Afghanistan-Pakistan.
US troops will not just be shifting their focus to South Asia; they will be shifting it stateside to help implement the new administration’s Mandatory Civil Service Plan. If the socialist ideologues on Mr. Obama’s team have their way, our military assets will be redeployed to become “block wardens” implementing Hope and Change in every neighborhood in America.
The United States of America, signing off…
As the West implodes with its final triumphant burst of Socialism, the Asian powers are poised to fill the resulting vacuum. India or China: who will win?
When the youngest of Gates of Vienna’s current readers reach my august age, they will in all likelihood be inhabitants of exhausted and diminished satellite states of the new hegemons of the Indian Ocean and the Pacific.
Where we think of London, Sydney, Los Angeles, Paris, New York, Rome, and Berlin, they will think of New Delhi, Tokyo, Taipei, Mumbai, Beijing, Seoul, and Hong Kong.
Much of the new civilization will contain recognizably Western elements. English will still be widely spoken as a lingua franca. India is already quite Western in culture and outlook, and allows its people at least as much political freedom as any country in the EU.
As for the Muslim world…
Islam will have to mind its p’s and q’s with the Asians running the show.
Hat tip: C. Cantoni