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Rather than getting distracted by distant and likely irreducible uncertainties, let’s focus on what matters: deploying clean technologies we know we need, implementing a coherent climate policy, laying the groundwork for future progress and creating a just transition that shares the benefits of a sustainable energy system.
The divide between the Global North and the Global South has now been shown to be conceptually naïve, economically unreliable, and politically dangerous. Democracy is now more in danger in the places where it is practiced than in regions that have hardly known it at all. It is now imperative that intellectual effort and material resources be urgently re-allocated to buttress democracy at home. This is the pre-eminent lesson to be drawn from the Ukraine fait accompli
Although the threat of Russian military bases in Latin America may be seen as bluster, the reality is that Putin does not need them to exert his damaging influence in the region. He has long taken advantage of regional political dynamics to destabilize what Russia considers an American “sphere of influence.”
Pluralism works inside a country when there are institutions and rules that govern competition among divergent interests. In post-Soviet Eurasia, there is a lot of geopolitical competition, but no agreed-upon institutions or rules to govern that competition. Until Russia, the United States, Europe, and the states stuck in between them reach a consensus on a revised regional order, post-Soviet Eurasia will remain a source of instability and conflict.
By significantly shortening the life of Asia’s coal-fired power plants, the new Energy Transition Mechanism will unlock new investment in sustainable and renewable sources of power. This model will help to solve the region’s climate challenges, and can potentially be scaled and exported around the world.
The last thing that Putin wants is a thriving Ukraine that joins the European Union and develops its people and economy beyond Putin’s underperforming, autocratic Russia. He wants Ukraine to fail, the E.U. to fracture and America to have Donald Trump as president for life so we'll be in permanent chaos. He’s rather pathetic — but also armed and dangerous.
The characteristics shared by early modern and contemporary states as well as other political entities contribute to lingering conflicts, chronic conflicts, and recurrent conflicts. What Biden or anyone else wants may not be as relevant as the deeper structural factors that shape states’ actions.
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