The Economist Laments the “Dying” International Liberal Order

The City of London’s media, as we know, tend to be the most open when it comes to expressing the intentions (and illusions) of the main shareholders of the transatlantic “rules-based order”. That is certainly the case in the introduction to The Economist’s cover story this week, written by its editor-in-chief Zanny Minton Beddoes.

“When I joined The Economist in the 1990s”, she wrote, “the liberal international order was at its zenith and the golden age of globalization was propelling economic integration, co-operation and financial freedom. Those days are over. Global capital flows are now fragmenting, the world’s governments are imposing sanctions more than four times as often, and Western-led institutions are either decaying or defunct. Our cover story in most of the world is frank in its message: the old order is dying. Its collapse could be sudden and irreversible.”

Another article in the dossier looks into how “the liberal order is slowly coming apart”. “For years the order that has governed the global economy since the Second World War has been eroded. Today it is close to collapse. A worrying number of triggers could set off a descent into anarchy, where might is right and war is once again the resort of great powers. Even if it never comes to conflict, the effect on the economy of a breakdown in norms could be fast and brutal.”

Minton Beddoes is certainly right about the collapse of the old order, as we have consistently documented. The nations of the Global South, or rather the “non West”, are increasingly rejecting its arbitrarily imposed “values” and exposing its hypocrisy, which could not be more blatant than in the “plausible genocide” occurring in Gaza before the eyes of the world (cf. below).

However, what worries almost as much the transatlantic elites is the growing revolt among populations of the West against the policies of their governments, in particular among students and other young people. Their fear was aptly expressed, just recently by Alex Karp, the billionaire CEO of the surveillance agency Palantir. At a forum last week, he warned: “We kind of just think these things that are happening, across college campuses especially, are like a sideshow—no, they are the show. Because if we lose the intellectual debate, you will not be able to deploy any army in the West, ever.”

In reporting these comments, columnist Caitlin Johnstone pointed out for those who are not familiar with Palantir, that it “is a CIA-backed surveillance and data mining tech company with intimate ties to both the U.S. intelligence cartel and to Israel, playing a crucial role in both the U.S. empire’s sprawling surveillance network and Israeli atrocities against Palestinians”. When such circles have to fear “losing the intellectual debate”, it means the protesters, including in the International Peace Coalition, are having a major effect.

Therefore, now is the time to put on the international agenda the type of new international security and development architecture, in the spirit of the Treaty of Westphalia, proposed by the Schiller Institute.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email