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Sochi Probes the Utopia of a Multipolar World
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An aerial view of Sochi, Russia. Photo: Wikipedia / Евгений Лодянов

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The annual Valdai Club meeting has always been positioned as absolutely essential when it comes to understanding the non-stop movement of geopolitical tectonic plates across Eurasia.

The ongoing 18th meeting in Sochi, Russia once again lived up to expectations. The overall theme was Global Shake-Up in the 21st Century: The Individual, Values, and the State. It expands on the theme of a “crumbling world” that Valdai had been analyzing since 2018: as the organizers highlight, this “has ceased to be a metaphor and turned into a palpable reality before our own eyes.”

Framing the discussions in Sochi, Valdai released two intriguing reports capable of offering prime food for thought, especially for the Global South: The Age of the Pandemic: Year Two. The Future is Back, and History, to be Continued: The Utopia of a Diverse World.

The “Future is Back” concept essentially means that, after the Covid-19 shock, the notion of a linear one-sided future, complete with “progress” defined as globalized democracy enshrining the “end of history,” is dead and buried.

Globalization, as framed by neoliberalism, proved to be finite.

The slide towards medical totalitarianism and the trappings of a maximum-security penitentiary are self-evident. As some Valdai participants noted, Foucault’s concept of “biopower” is no longer abstract philosophy.

The first session in Sochi went a long way in terms of framing our current predicament, starting with how the current incandescent US-China clash is unfolding.

Thomas Graham, from the Council on Foreign Relations – the conceptual matrix of the US establishment – recited the proverbial “indispensable nation” platitudes and how it’s “prepared to defend Taiwan,” even as he admitted, “the Biden administration is still articulating its policy.”

Military helicopters carrying large Taiwan flags do flyby rehearsals on October 5 ahead of National Day celebrations amid escalating tensions between Taipei and Beijing. Photo: AFP / Ceng Shou Yi / NurPhoto
Military helicopters carrying large Taiwan flags do flyby rehearsals on October 5 ahead of National Day celebrations amid escalating tensions between Taipei and Beijing. Photo: AFP / Ceng Shou Yi / NurPhoto

It was up to Zhou Bo, from the Center for International Security and Strategy at Tsinghua University, to ask the hard questions: if the US and China are in competition, “how far are we from conflict?” He stressed “cooperation” instead of a slide into confrontation, yet China “will cooperate from a position of strength.”

Zhou Bo also clarified how Beijing is “not interested in bipolarity,” in terms of China “replacing the USSR during the Cold War”: after all, “China is not competing with the US elsewhere in the world.”

Yet even as “the center of gravity is moving irreversibly to the East,” he admitted the current situation “is more dangerous than during the Cold War.”

Surveying the global chessboard, former Brazilian foreign minister Celso Amorim stressed “the absurdity of the UN Security Council deciding even matters related to the pandemic.”

Amorim voiced one of the Global South’s key demands: the “need for a new institutional framework. The closer we get would be the G-20 – a little more African, a little less European.” This G-20 would command the authority the current UN Security Council lacks.

So Amorim had to tie it all to the centrality of inequality: his quip about “coming from a forgotten region,” Latin America, was very much on point. He also had to stress, “we didn’t want a Pax Americana.” A real, “concrete step” towards multipolarity would be “a big conference” that could be led by this “modified G-20.”

Togtbaatar Damdin, a Mongolian parliamentarian, evoked “my great, great, great grandfather,” Genghis Khan, and how he built “that huge empire and called it Pax Mongolica,” focused on what matters to the here and now: “peaceful trade and economic integration in Greater Eurasia.” Damdin stressed, “we [Mongolians] no longer believe in war. It’s much more profitable to be involved in trade.”

A constant theme in this and other Valdai sessions has been “Hybrid War” and “Shadow War”, the new imperial instruments deployed against parts of Latin America, the greater Middle East and Russia-China, in contrast to “a transparent system under the rule of law – and kept by international law,” as noted by Oksana Sinyavskaya from the Institute for Social Policy at the Higher School of Economics.

The discussions in Sochi essentially focused on the twilight of the current hegemonic socio-economic system – essentially neoliberalism; the crisis of alliance systems – as in the rot within NATO; and the toxic confluence of Hybrid War and the pandemic – impacting billions of people. An inevitable conclusion: the current dysfunctional international system is incapable of dealing with crisis management.

In the roundtable presenting the Valdai report on Year Two of the Age of Pandemic, Thomas Gomart, a director of the French Institute of International Relations (IFRI), stressed how hard it still was to analyze the geopolitics of data.

With the Chinese privileging the concept of “ecological civilization,” questions of technological monitoring – as in how social credit is framed – are now on the forefront.

China is focusing more resources and energy on cybersecurity and cyber-warfare. Image: Twitter
China is focusing more resources and energy on cybersecurity and cyber-warfare. Image: Twitter

And as we delve deeper into “invisible wars” – Gomart’s own terminology – we face a toxic convergence of environmental degradation and hyper-concentration of digital platforms.

Gomart also made two crucial points that escape many analyses across the Global South: Washington has decided to remain the primus inter pares, and won’t abdicate from this position no matter what. This is happening even as global capital – heavily slanted towards the US – wants to find the new China.

That set the stage for Nelson Wong, the vice-chairman of the Shanghai Center for RimPac Strategic and International Studies, to diplomatically shatter divide and rule tactics and the US obsession with a zero-sum game. Wong stressed how China “does not hold a hostile attitude towards the US”; its aim, he claims, is a “peaceful rise.”

But most significantly, Wong made sure that “the post-pandemic world will not be determined by the outcome of the confrontation between the US and China, or by splitting the world into two competing camps.”

This hopeful perspective implies the Global South will eventually have its say – aligned with Amorim’s proposal of a tweaked G-20.

The Valdai discussions in Sochi significantly take place just as Moscow decided to suspend the work of its mission to NATO from November 1, and close the NATO information office in Moscow.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov had already stressed that Moscow no longer pretends that changes in the relationship with NATO are possible in the near future: from now on, if they want to talk, they should contact the Russian ambassador to Belgium.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov. Photo: AFP via Sputnik / Ekaterina Chesnokova
Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov. Photo: AFP via Sputnik / Ekaterina Chesnokova

One of the questions at Sochi had to revolve on whether Moscow should expect NATO to take the first step to improve relations. Lavrov had, once again, to repeat the obvious: “Yes, we proceed from this. We have never started the deterioration of our relations with NATO, the European Union, or any other country in the West or any other region of the world.

“Everyone knows this story well. When Saakashvili in August 2008 gave the criminal order to bomb the city of Tskhinval and the positions of peacekeepers (including Russian ones), Russia insisted on convening the Russia-NATO Council to consider this situation.


“The then US secretary of state Condoleeza Rice categorically refused, although when creating the Russia-NATO Council, the founding act emphasized that it should act in any ‘weather,’ especially when crisis situations occur. This is one example that marked the beginning of the current state of affairs between the US and NATO.”

So Russia has established the new game in (Atlanticist) town: we only talk to the masters and ignore the lackeys. As for NATO now geared to create “capabilities” to be used against China, the Global South may collectively engage in rolls of laughter – considering the fresh NATO humiliation in Afghanistan.

With the inevitability of an EU more and more geo-economically intertwined with China, dysfunctional NATO at best may keep on prowling as a bunch of zombie rabid dogs. Now that’s a Utopia theme for Valdai 2022.

(Republished from Asia Times by permission of author or representative)
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  1. Anonymous[318] • Disclaimer says:

    All this media propaganda about a new Cold War with Russia, and threat of war with China over Taiwan is just that, propaganda.

    An Ashkenazi Jew who’s in the same wealth and power bracket as George Soros is based in Russia. This Jew made his wealth there under the auspices of Putin’s regime. He continues to enrich himself there while taking frequent trips across the world to pump billions into Soros-type NGOs and other bodies dedicated to the New World Order.

    This Russian Jew is hardly ever mentioned in the MSM. There’s others like him. If you think that Putin and his regime are on the side of freedom and White nationalism, you’re wrong and probably stupid.

    Communism, Fascism, Nazism or Totalitarianism, take your pick, there’s no difference. There are all equal in that they all stamp out individual rights and rule a dumbed-down collective.

    Russia didn’t really dump Communism, it just changed the name of its management system. It still a totalitarian state, led by a despot. And still well under the thumb of the Ashkenazi Jews.

    There was a very good sign a few weeks back as to what Russia and Putin really are. An undertaker in the United Kingdom went public with believable proof that the SARS CoV-2 pandemic was a scam. He had evidence and made videos and posted them online.


    What this undertaker posted and the personal experiences he related were believable. People were listening to him. Then after a few days this undertaker was approached by the Russia Today media company, more commonly known as RT.

    RT offered this undertaker £85,000 sterling to take down his videos and to shut up. It’s well known that RT is the foremost propaganda arm of the Putin regime. Fancy that? Putin’s media company is prepared to pay people in the West to not expose evidence that points to SARS CoV-2 being a fraud.

    How about all the as*holes that think China might be their great saviour? These people well know that many American and European companies relocated to China. Unpleasant, they think, but no great harm, these companies simply went there for the cheap labour.

    What these as*holes don’t know, is that the United States, since the early 1990s, has pumped billions of dollars into Research & Development in China. The corporations that pumped these billions of dollars into R&D in China didn’t get a return on their “investment” by availing of Chinese slave labour – R&D doesn’t work like building phones in a factory.

    That hypersonic missile China just sent around the world was built with technology and expertise that American corporations gave freely to the CCP.

    These billions were really spent to buy control of bigwigs in the Chinese Communist Party – to ensure they were onboard when the implementation of the Great Reset got underway.

    As for European and American White conservatives and nationals: They are every bit as stupid as the White buffoons on the left.

    Recently a doctor in Illinois went public with blood tests he had done on a patient – he done tests prior to and after this patient had been SARS CoV-2 vaccinated. This doctor posted a video online which clearly showed that the vaccination had completely destroyed the patient’s immune system.

    Fair play to this brave doctor. He’ll now be hounded by Big Pharma and the FDA. He’ll be lucky if he’s only struck off the medical register, and not murdered. In the very least, his career as a doctor is probably finished.

    A friend of mine saw this doctor’s video and was greatly moved by it. He researched this doctor and found other posts he had made which warned of the dangers of the toxic SARS C0V-2 vaccines.

    This friend spent a whole weekend putting together pertinent points of this doctor’s various posts in a video and posted this on three conservative social media platforms. He showed me the video he put together, it was actually quite professional and highlighted the doctor’s warnings about the poisonous vaccines.

    On one of these platforms he had a reasonable number of “followers” and “followed” four times as many. His video got absolutely no interaction from any of the other users. Zilch. Zero None.

    He thought that at least some of the users would have shared or spread around this doctor’s warnings and evidence about the toxic vaccines. But not one of the bas*tards shared it. They were probably too busy sharing GIFs of a cat taking a dump.

    He might as well have spent his weekend making this video and then flung it in the nearest river. There’d be probably a higher IQ among the fish than on the three conservative sites he posted it on.

    As for Russia and China: If the SARS CoV-2 scamdemic doesn’t work out for the Great Resetters, they’ll start a managed war with Russia and/or China. And the regimes in both these latter countries will be onboard with it.

    You see, after over a century of using idiotic Whites to fight their wars, the Ashkenazi know that Whites are actually cretinous fu*king idiots and that they will be taken in by the most fatuous schemes.

    By the way, what about the New York Ashkenazi Jew that publicly stated that Whites were incurable parasites. You’ll still find him swanning around NY without a care in the world – thanks to the cowardliness of White Americans.

    But when this Ashkenazi’s cousins tell you to go and bust up an Arab country and murder hundreds of thousands of its citizens, you immediately whip out your ass-wipe Stars and Strips, and are off to do it in a flash.

    • Thanks: Jim Christian
    • Replies: @Sick of Orcs
  2. The Mongolian parliamentarian is wise… Trade is better than war. The Brazilian former minister has a point about Pax Americana and the G20. But it is up to Brazilians to help change it and not sell out their own interests to the same entitity who has interfered in their politics for decades.

  3. @Anonymous

    Is there a reason you’re not printing the names of these wealthy Jews?

  4. PJ London says:

    NATO in Europe is fully aware that they could not withstand a Russian ground conflict.
    It would require an immediate aerial – missile response from the USA for NATO to last a week.
    This would trigger a Russian missile response and that would escalate to nuclear in a matter of hours.
    Russia will protect Russian speakers in Donbass, Crimea and Ossetia-Abkhazia and in the other Stans if required but has no interest in adding more refugees to its system.
    Russia-China and the rest of the world have realised that the US hegemony is over and that Europe is irrelevant to the future power structure.
    Turkey is the only idiot that wants to play at being soldiers outside of its’ borders and this could drag NATO and US into a conflict.
    Israel of course is insane and no-one knows what stupidity it is capable of.
    Other than these two crazies, the world is relatively peaceful.
    Syrians, Somalis and various African tribes might disagree but 99% can sleep without the fear of an invasion.

    • Replies: @Notsofast
  5. Notsofast says:
    @PJ London

    agree on israel and turkey (erdogan is not just duplicitous, he’s omniplicitous, playing all sides against the middle) but how can you leave the u.s. off the list of crazies?

  6. PJ London says:

    There are a hundred adjectives I would apply to the US, duplicitous, murderous, arrogant, etc. but there is an underlying understanding of the consequences of their actions. They are often mistaken, Iraq, Syria et al. but they do things for rationale reasons, Israel and Erdogan have no restraint and no real awareness of outcomes.

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