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Joe Biden’s new doctrine and the return of geopolitics

By Dr. Sadri Ramabaja

J. Biden’s one-week visit, which culminated in a meeting in Geneva with Putin, demonstrated how committed Washington remains to promoting the new US global strategy to build a world of safe for democracies, denying room for maneuver and influence in the international community of authoritarian state actors.

According to the basic concept of this new American strategy, China and Russia, as the most powerful forces in the undemocratic world, are further categorized as the greatest threat from which, openly or indirectly, come the systematic threats to the new international democratic order. In the heart of the new American geostrategic doctrine, now unequivocally endorsed by the major European powers and the entire US-led Western world, is now the defense of liberal democracy and the liberal order.

D.Trup’s neo-fascist slogan “America Ferst” now belongs to history.

The new orientation of American foreign policy, which means the re-consolidation of relations within the family of liberal democracies, was confirmed by Joe Biden through an essay published in the Washington Post on June 5. Describing in his essay what essentially the doctrine of American foreign policy is at present, he also brings out his visions for democracy.

“There will be no doubt about the resolve of the US to defend our democratic values, which we cannot separate from our interests.” clearly expressed J.Biden. From this vision results the leading role, the unifier of the United States, valid everywhere for the democratic world. The US is now returning as a partner of established democracies, to contribute together in the confrontation with authoritarian states, first and foremost with China and Russia.

A few days later, exactly on June 8, the Atlantic Council published an article by Daniel Fried, which sheds wider light on J. Biden’s new vision for a democratic world, the creation of which the United States United must play a leading role. The Atlantic Council is a politically influential think-tank, founded in 1961 and headquartered in Washington; he had and has the mission of promoting transatlantic cooperation between North America and Europe.

The title of Daniel Fried’s essay is significant and highly critical: “Biden is building a doctrine around democracy. Will it work? ” J. Biden’s new doctrine is essentially about defending democracy. With this act he, according to D.Fried is breaking not only the framework of rivalry of the great power of the Trump administration, but also Barack Obama’s reserve for the position of the United States in the defense of democracy as an essential value.

Biden seems to be clear about the challenges facing liberal democracy today, not excluding neo-fascism dressed in neoliberalism, but also traditional Russian and Chinese authoritarianism. In fact this foretold strategy of J. Biden, if we analyze modern American political history, turns out to have started with Teddy Roosevelt, and then it found expression in Woodrow Wilson’s Fourteen Points of 1918, which were openly defended of small nation-states, and was put to work by Franklin Roosevelt and Harry Truman after World War II.

According to D. Fried, this is a “strategy rooted in the belief that an international, rule-based, freedom-loving system will be good for both the United States and the world; that U.S. interests will advance with their values; that U.S. prosperity depends on the prosperity of others; and, therefore, that the support and leadership of the United States for such a world – that is, for a free world, as we have said before – is not charitable, but a wise personal interest. ” (https://www.atlanticcouncil.org)

Biden’s doctrine, according to Daniel Fried, “represents the confidence that American entrepreneurship and creativity – Yankee’s ingenuity – give the United States a natural edge in an open, rule-based world.” (ibidem)

Further, in elaborating on Biden’s doctrine, Daniel Fried brings the dilemmas she has and the reason why in the subtitle of his essay she questions its realization, respectively the obstacles she faces from the beginning.

In Biden’s editorial just four days ago, he promises resistance to possible Putin aggression, including the momentary neuralgic point, such as Ukraine. Meanwhile, the Biden administration is looking for new ways to make the fight against the “Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline project” more realistic, which Putin has a vital interest in, as it directly links Russia with Germany, which would make confrontation and blackmail against Ukraine possible until Russian gas is cut off for Ukraine.

J. Biden’s meeting with his Russian counterpart in Geneva, as well as the entire engagement of his administration, meanwhile have proved that they remain committed to building strategies in relations with Russia as well. The Biden administration demands greater predictability and stability in relations with Russia.

In recent weeks, however, Russian hackers have taken action again. They from a base in Russia have attacked US infrastructure at two critical points: Colonial PipelineJBS  the critical Colonial Pipeline and the JBS meat-packing plant. Further Russian intelligence services have attacked a USAID account to carry out a phishing attack… Putin seems to give little value to predictability and stability in relations with the United States, says Daniel Fried. (Ibidem).

Liberal democracy relations with China are no less challenging. In this line D.Fried concludes:

“Biden rightly defends a great vision of the United States based on democratic values. He is right, because American prosperity and freedom will not flourish in a world divided between rival empires ruled by Tirana and where rules and norms are set in Beijing and Moscow. “He is right because the withdrawal of the United States will support the views of autocrats who claim that democracy is declining and that the future belongs to them.”

But are we also dealing in this case with a new cover of geo-economics and geopolitical projections? In analysis published in geopolitical journals and Think-Tank pages, this fact is by no means denied. In some of them, the well-known fact that China currently controls most of the deposits and production capacities of rare minerals, which are the main raw material for the digital transformation and transformation of the green economy of the society, is clearly stated.

The meeting of the two presidents – the American Joe Biden and the Russian Vladimir Putin – marks the de facto new and dangerous threat of an international character: the return of “geopolitics” that will give a new shape to the international security situation.

Even before this meeting, the President of Russia had charged the experts for reviewing the Russian strategy, thus positioning himself against the West with a new strategic document. Critics see the document as a new step in bringing the Russian Federation back into the Cold War era, and at the same time moving away from the values of Western democracies. “The Westernization’ of culture increases the risk that the Russian Federation will lose its cultural sovereignty,” says the 43-page document published on July 3, which entered into force on the date of signing on July 2.

The strategy has in the ranking of Russia’s main vital priorities, in addition to preserving the people of Russia, the protection of traditional Russian spiritual and moral values. The “Traditional Russian values, along with intellectual-moral and cultural-historical values, are being actively attacked by the United States and its allies – including transnational corporations and foreign non-profit organizations,” the authors of this paper claim of a strategic nature.

The Russian President Vladimir Putin has signed a decree approving the National Security Strategy of the Russian Federation, Russian media report. This document cancels the previous one, dated December 31, 2015. It seems that in the new document, Putin’s thesis that the model of liberal democracies is in crisis has taken center stage. It must therefore be crushed and subjected to Russian interests. The most appropriate term to describe these developments is “geopolitics”. Modern Russia continues the Soviet tradition, turning others into dependent vassals, and then treating them as second-class states, using its energy resources for geopolitical purposes.

Therefore, Nord Stream 2 takes us back to the era of President Ronald Reagan four decades ago. See for this, Blinken calls it a “Russian geopolitical project to divide Europe”. Isn’t the Novi Sad (Open Balkan) project, which claims to overlap with the Berlin Process, of the same nature?!

This valuable conclusion for the new American strategy has long been synonymous with freedom for Albanians as well. Meanwhile, the possible fluctuations in relation to the functioning of our fragile democracy in both our republics, lead to water in the mill of Serbia. Therefore, flirting with authoritarian states, and even worse, imitating them, see for this, contradict both our national interests and the American strategy.

Dr. Sadri Ramabaja is a professor at ILIRIA University, Prishtina

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Foreign Policy News is a self-financed initiative providing a venue and forum for political analysts and experts to disseminate analysis of major political and business-related events in the world, shed light on particulars of U.S. foreign policy from the perspective of foreign media and present alternative overview on current events affecting the international relations.

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