Should we be worried?

in Deep Diveslast month

As everyone knows, there has been an increase in global bellicosity in recent times. Although, of course, there are some conflicts we know much more about than others. The conflict in Ukraine, which has been ongoing for more than 25 months, is now joined by the escalating warfare in Palestine. The actions of the Houthi militias in Yemen in the Gulf of Oman, and most recently, Iran's attacks on Israel.
At first glance, these conflicts may seem disconnected from each other, but the truth is that they all stem from a much more complex geostrategic situation that needs to be analyzed and originates from the Cold War.

With the fall of the Soviet Union and the end of the Cold War, the Warsaw Pact dissolved, and consequently NATO remained as the world's only significant military alliance. Since that time, NATO has continued to grow, continuously adding new states to the alliance in a sequence that shows a continuous eastward advancement.

During this time, Russia had maintained a position that could be described as "tolerant," possibly because it did not consider itself strong enough to engage in a military conflict that could lead to a confrontation with NATO. Perhaps it still doesn't, but apparently, Ukraine's approach and its government's manifest intentions to join NATO were the final straw.

While the conflict in Donbass and what the Russian government calls Ukraine's adoption of Nazi doctrine have been cited by Vladimir Putin's government as justifications for their "Special Operation" and invasion of Ukrainian territory, a glance at the map of Europe is enough to realize that a virtual union of Ukraine with NATO puts Russia in a very compromised geostrategic position, so perhaps the true reason for the conflict is to prevent Ukraine from joining the Alliance.

However, the war in Ukraine has become a proxy war as the government and army of that country have received military and economic assistance from several NATO member countries. Despite this, they have not been able to repel the Russian invasion.

One of the most worrisome results of this war is the accelerated increase in bellicose rhetoric in Europe, with several political and media figures talking about increasing defense spending, and even considering the idea of creating a common European army.

Why is this so worrying?

Because an escalation of bellicosity in Europe has the potential to destabilize the balance of power and generate responses from the other side, increasing the likelihood of a global-scale conflict.

Regarding Russia, while there is no formal and properly structured alliance, it cannot be said to be alone either. Iran is a clear ally of Russia, and its recent attack on Israel effectively puts it in a situation of confrontation with the West.

Now, why has Iran decided to directly attack Israel?

On one hand, there is the recent attack by Israel a few days ago on what Iran declares as its consulate in Syrian territory, where 16 people died, including 7 Iranian nationals. Iran declares this to be a casus belli, but there is more to consider in this case.

Israel has been engaged in a campaign of extermination in Gaza for several weeks, with reported casualties exceeding 33,000 to date, a fact that has led the international community to distance itself from Israel to the point where South Africa has filed a lawsuit against Israel in the International Court of Justice, and even the USA has abstained from vetoing the resolution of the UN Security Council for a ceasefire in Gaza.

This distancing may have encouraged Iran to perpetuate its attack, though it is also possible that the Israeli attack on the Iranian consulate was a provocation seeking for a warlike response from Iran to position the USA and the international community closer to their interests.

What will be the outcome of this? Well, for now Western media have already started to align with Israel blaming Iran for the attack and downplaying or overlooking the attack on the Iranian consulate in Damascus. However, even though the USA has taken a supportive stance towards Israel, there has not been a declaration of war or a decision for a direct attack against Iran by them. Iran controls the Strait of Hormuz, as they have clearly pointed out today with the detention of a vessel related to Israel. The Strait of Hormuz accommodates 20% of international oil trade; a virtual closure of the Strait of Hormuz would spike oil prices and have the potential to impact global trade, a situation not desirable for the USA government during an ongoing electoral race. On the other hand, Putin has stated that he would support Iran in the event of a U.S. attack on Iran. In the event of a military confrontation between these two nations, NATO’s entry into the conflict would be inevitable, and furthermore, North Korea, which is in complete alignment with Russia, could also join the conflict, becaming a global conflagration.

And China?

At present, China has not clearly positioned itself on one side or the other, but its geographical location, high levels of collaboration and trade with Russia, as well as its own conflict with Taiwan and the U.S. support for the Taiwanese government, suggest that in the face of a global conflict, China has a clear inclination to align with Russia.

What is truly concerning is that several countries potentially involved in a conflict of this nature have the capacity to extinguish humanity and completely transform the configuration of the planet we know. But even if all parties were to demonstrate exemplary restraint and the nuclear option were never to be used, a conflict of this magnitude would completely alter the political and economic landscape of the world as we know it.

And we have not even considered the positions of important actors such as Australia, India, Pakistan, and Japan.

Would we be able to survive such a conflict? What do you think?

Let me know in the comments

For my part, I vote for harmony and moderation.

Translated and formatted with Hive Translator by @noakmilo.
Images generated with AI


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