Reviews | The Biden Doctrine will not win the 21st century for humanity
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The frameworks, paradigms and doctrines of this era, whatever they may be, are simply insufficient to meet the challenges of the 21st century. There needs to be bolder thinking, thinking that moves away from states, whether they are large or small powers, democracies or autocracies. It’s time to put people first, to see the world first as a planet of eight billion people rather than an artificially constructed system of 195 countries, and to measure all state actions against their own. impact on people. Instead of competing with China today on one issue and cooperating tomorrow on another, Mr. Biden must prioritize cooperation on global issues and challenge other nations, be they democracies, autocracies or something in between, to join us.
This approach is known as globalism, which has a bad reputation due to its association with globalization. But globalism is actually closer to localism, starting with people, where they live and what they need, regardless of which colored square on the map they were born into. It is a people-centered rather than a state-centered approach. global problem solving. He does not claim that governments do not exist or do not matter, but rejects the idea that interstate rivalry is an end in itself – the essence of geopolitics.
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Globalism also views government officials as a set of actors who can contribute to global problems or global solutions. To be successful as problem solvers, however, they must work alongside global corporations and networks of cities, civic groups, faith groups, universities, scientists, and others. These actors are not only “auxiliaries”, catalysts or constituents. They are actors of world politics.
Mr. Biden sometimes seems to go in this direction. His speech to the United Nations General Assembly in September drew up a long list of global issues, ranging from health and climate change to inequality and corruption. In my opinion, his biggest foreign policy achievement to date has been securing a minimum global corporate tax rate of 15%, ensuring that corporations around the world pay at least a portion of their fair share. for public goods – from roads to intellectual property laws – which they rely on and which benefit all citizens. The Biden administration is also taking a “whole society” approach to tackling climate change.
On many occasions, however, Mr. Biden other objective – to beat China, or more broadly align democracies to beat autocracies – stands in the way. This week, thanks to the work of climate envoy John Kerry, the United States and China reached an important agreement to cooperate on deeper cuts in carbon dioxide and methane emissions. This is not enough, however, and misses a wider opportunity to mobilize the United States, China, the European Union and India as co-leaders on a global climate challenge.
The allure of competing – often on the verge of conflict – with a rival superpower is simply too strong, both for Mr Biden and for the tight-knit group of brothers who form the core of his foreign policy team. Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Jake Sullivan, the National Security Advisor, are veterans of the Obama administration’s “Pivot to Asia”, a concept devised and advanced in large part by Kurt Campbell, now the Czar. of the White House in Asia.
From a 20th century geopolitical perspective, it makes sense for the Biden administration to approach its relationship with China as one in which the United States has many different goals: economic, military, and diplomatic. On certain issues, such as climate or health, we are seeking cooperation from China. Over many others, such as military primacy, freedom of navigation in the South China Sea, fair trade, intellectual property rights, cybersecurity, and human rights, our relationship requires competition and coercion. Hence the frequent compromise debate, in which the Chinese hawks have asked Mr. Kerry not to give in an inch to get concessions on Chinese emissions or to encourage other actions that are necessary to prevent the globe to heat up another degree.
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