Entangling alliances? Europe, the United States, Asia, and the risk of a new 1914

How has alliance formation and maintenance changed since the Cold War? As Russia invades Ukraine, China threatens Taiwan, Iran harasses Gulf States, and Turkey’s neighbors worry about Ankara’s designs, it is a good time to reassess the validity of alliances for global security. Some believe that traditional military alliances are getting weaker or outmoded, and will increasingly be replaced by looser ad hoc groupings such as the Quad, the defense-alliance trio known as AUKUS, or coalitions for given operations such as those in Kosovo, Afghanistan, Iraq, or Libya. However, standing alliances are proliferating (increasing in numbers), widening (welcoming new members), and deepening (reinforcing solidarity and cooperation). The result is a network of interlocking defense relationships, to which an ever-thicker layer of new security groupings and quasi alliances is being added. The emerging system is complex, and policymakers would do well to think through possible future crises to imagine how the various moving parts would end up interacting. They should avoid drawing on the Cold War as a guiding epoch, as it was a comparatively stable and predictable bipolar order. Alliances will also be consistently tested as well, because, as alliances are created or reinforced, adversaries react and probe their limits.

Will this expanding network of alliances create more stability or more instability? Does alliance proliferation reduce or increase the risk of war? And if war erupted somewhere, what would be the risks of escalation? The dawning multipolar world, featuring an increasingly dense network of security arrangements, uncomfortably remind us of the years 1912-1914, shortly before the outbreak of World War I. A definitive answer may be impossible to arrive at, but evidence suggests that the current proliferation of alliances is, on balance, more stabilizing to world order than not. The broad set of alliances, suballiances, and security arrangements act as a “safety belt” for world order, rather than as a “conveyor belt” to catastrophe.

 Συνέχεια εδώ

 Πηγή: atlanticcouncil.org

Σχετικά Άρθρα