Robert Kaplan Returns to a Familiar Theme

I just came across the latest piece by Robert D. Kaplan and thought it worth sharing. Its central theme is one of those that I focused on in my essay about his work; that being the error that many westerners make in placing too much emphasis on democracy and too little on good governance and strong institutions for less developed countries.

He also criticizes President Biden for characterizing the dawning long-term struggle between the U.S. and its allies on the one hand, and China, Russia and its allies on the other, as an existential conflict between democracies and autocracies:

Given these realities, leading a worldwide coalition against the two great Eurasian revanchist powers — Russia, which seeks to annex Ukraine, and China, which seeks to annex Taiwan — requires the sort of pragmatic vision that Secretary of State James Baker employed when organizing 35 nations, including autocracies, to stand against Iraq’s invasion of Kuwait in 1990. Baker’s strategy was not to change the world, but to undo a particular territorial conquest. The Biden administration’s strategy toward Russia and China should be likewise: oriented not to fight autocracy the world over, but to stop the armed aggression of two military powers.

Click on the below link to read the entire piece:

To Save Democracy, We Need a Few Good Dictators

(I have to say that wouldn’t have been my choice for a headline.)

Note: The article sheds light on why I chose the above photo for this post.

Published by BZ Maestro

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2 thoughts on “Robert Kaplan Returns to a Familiar Theme

  1. It’s a good essay. I’m a great believer in democracy as a fundamental human right, but I also am painfully aware that (1) the US can’t solve every problem, and we usually create a new one when we try, and (2) you have to play the hand you’re dealt.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. And I like his point that there are places where having a national election will result in religious extremists winning and subsequently curtailing rights for portions of the population.

      I just wish the headlines used “Autocrats” instead of “Dictators.”

      Liked by 1 person

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