Rhys Wallis

Страна : Великобритания

Я 17 (почти 18) летний Политика и экономика Студент в настоящее время участие шестой форме в Соединенном Королевстве. Мои страсти – это политика и политическая журналистика, а также различные виды спорта, и я являюсь сторонником ЕС и духа транснационального сотрудничества, который он поощряет.


Country : UK


I am a 17 (nearly 18) year old Politics and Economics Student currently attending Sixth Form in the United Kingdom. My passions are politics and political journalism, as well as various sports, and I am a proponent of the EU and the spirit of transnational cooperation which it fosters.


Great Eurasia: successes and problems of regional cooperation

Eurasian cooperation is in the midst of perhaps its greatest crisis since the end of the Soviet Union, as Britain wavers and wanders itself over the edges of the Brexit precipice. This fantastical act of extrication from a mutually cooperative organisation into a world facing the problems of Russian aggression, and Trumpian world politics, trade wars, and diplomacy, sets the UK into a new phase of Eurasian cooperation.

Since the expulsion of Russia from the G8, Eurasian cooperation has been fraught. The constant threat of a renewal of the conflict in Ukraine, thankfully recently brought a few more steps back from the precipice by the prisoner exchange, and the tense political arrangements between Russia, the EU and individual member states has left many within the Eurasian area increasingly isolationist in their outlook. Turkey too poses problems, recently its (still pending, now looking increasingly unlikely) membership of the EU and economic crises, not to mention the excesses of Recep Tayyip Erdogan, as well as the current state of democracy in Hong Kong, with the media more than ever aware of the abuses of the Xi Jingping regime in that country. This burgeoning Eurasian crisis, with Brexit at its route, stems from the delicate balance of regional cooperation which is currently in place to maintain the best possible economic and social order on the World’s largest continental landmass.

Before discussing that which has seemingly become the only issue which is possible to be discussed in the United Kingdom, there should first be an overview of how the many cooperative Eurasian entities succeed and face problems. The major cooperative entity within the double continent of Eurasia is, naturally, the European Union, and that has been a successful cooperative organisation for many decades. Since the Treaty of Rome, the European Union has maintained a secure, stable and cooperative economic and political Union across the continent, keeping national interest finely balances with the aims of cooperation, and common goals have been met in all aspects of European Economic Community, and later European Union policy, rounding off an era with the Treaty of Lisbon, where adaptations were made to the EU to make it more internally democratic and intergovernmental whilst maintaining the supra-national levels of the Commission.

The European project has been a model of success, despite nationalists desperately attempting to dismantle the Union from within, and the EU has grown from a mere economic cooperative community, into a fully-fledged political entity, with almost a federal government level of administration, and allowing Europe to grow in a cooperative spirit, and continue to prosper successfully. The main achievement of the European Union however, has been the avoidance of major European conflict within the Union and between the Union and others, which has been the case since the adoption of the Treaty of Rome and even before when Belgium, Germany, Luxemburg, France, and the Netherlands formed a united front on coal. Projects such as this have been copied to certain extents across the world through the Eurasian Union, and NAFTA, to name but a few.

Across the rest of Eurasia, there have been many cooperative entities formed, and some nations have trade deals or cooperation agreements towards a joint aim formed with the European Union. Japan and Korea have enterprise zones formed, with EU support, and are now beneficiaries of a trade deal with the European Union, as is China, despite Trump’s best efforts to sway the rest of the world to his anti-China world view, for better or for worse. AESM is also a prime example of cooperation across Eurasia, which allows for European and Asian Nations and their governments to come together on an intergovernmental level to help guide the future of Eurasia.

In addition to purely Eurasian cooperation, there is also wider cooperation across a global stage which helps to foster the spirit of cooperation and achieving joint goals which is so important to the future of the Eurasian people and nations. The COP 21 Paris Climate Accords, signed by almost every country on Earth and a lasting legacy of the Obama Administration, is one such example. Building on the 1997 Kyoto Protocol, and adding to the European Union Emission Trading Scheme, the COP 21 Resolution will help to continue the environmental safeguarding which is so championed by the European Union and Green Parties across the globe, as well as making sure that all Eurasian Nations (and beyond) strive towards the environmental goals set out in 2015. This ambitious aim for global cooperation has no doubt helped to foster more cooperation within the Great Eurasia and will be a force for good, as long as there are no more dissenting nations that attempt to leave the accord, as Donald Trump and America still seem intent on.

Despite all of these efforts, there remain barriers to cooperation within Eurasia. Foremost on the minds of many Westerners with the 18th Anniversary of 9/11 on the horizon is the remaining problem with militant Islamist groups causing havoc in the Middle East, driving wedges between families and destroying livelihoods, as well as lives, all in the name of Allah (pbuh). This despicable perversion of a proud and longstanding faith is a major threat to cooperation, especially with the conflict expanding once again, as Trump and American led coalitions attempt to bring a swift end to Iranian affairs, as well as the regime of Bashaar Al-Assad, a goal which looks set to not be achieved. The territory formerly held by IS, Islamic State, ISIS, Daesh, however they are to be named, is no, mercifully diminished, however the problem of terrorist action remains, and will not help Eurasian cooperation as there are a multitude of ways to attempt to solve such a problem, and a multitude of different players in these various games.

A further barrier to cooperation, the events which have been occurring in Hong Kong in recent weeks and months have seemed to drive a wedge between democratic intentions of China and other previously totalitarian or undemocratic Eurasian nations and their actions, as the spotlight which has been shone on anti-democratic activity in Hong Kong has illuminated actions across the entirety of Eurasia. These abuses of human rights, democratic principles, and other liberal rights which are held dear by the majority of Eurasian governments and people will not be tolerated, and in order to maintain a functional level of cooperation, then these must be stamped out.

Whilst this is not an exhaustive list of the successes and failures of Eurasian cooperation, and I daren’t even begin to scratch the surface of Russian aggression, with Salisbury and the Novichok abuses, and the detainment of journalists, opposition ministers, it is a fair background to the main argument of this article. Whilst Brexit may not seem to be the issue that should divert so much attention, it is, unfortunately, a seriously critical event, which could have seriously critical ramifications. With the UK set to crash out of the EU without a deal, contrary to even the British Government’s own data, and with little evidence to support the boundless optimism of The Prime Minister, his Cabinet and Dominic Cummings, there could be existential threats to the UK, EU, Eurasian cooperation and many more serious events regarding global cooperation and even world peace if Russia and China cannot be held in check by an equally strong force – preferably avoiding American intervention as well.

Brexit’s threats to Eurasian order are manifold. Primarily, they are a destabilising force in Europe alone due to the delicate balance of nationalism in the EU as it is. If Brexit happens and is a success, then the nationalists in Italy, led by Matteo Salvini, in France under Marine Le Pen, and in Germany under Jorg Meuthen may see this as their opportunity to destabilise the remaining EU-27, launching Europe into an economic spiral of chaos, as well as ripping up the political rule book. If Brexit is stopped, however, then those self-same nationalists will see it as a denial of the democratic decisions of the United Kingdom, and simply add it, with potentially some degree of legitimacy, to their list of grievances against the EU. Ironically, keeping one of its strongest and largest members ‘in the club’, as it were, could backfire significantly on the EU. Then, finally, there is the impact of a calamitous Brexit. If it were to go economically and socially wrong for the UK, then there would be a large economic and social, not to mention political, mess on the doorstep of the EU, which would have to be sorted out. Quite simply too much goes on through the UK to leave it alone. This would placate the nationalists in the EU for a while at least perhaps, however with the UK economically crippled, many institutions which make up the EU, as well as the corporations which operate in the EU and UK, could see their funds drift slowly away as their UK market dries up. An undeniable calamity.

This is all without mentioning the wider impacts of Brexit on Eurasia. Recently, India, Japan, and many other Eurasian nations have been in intense trade talks with the European Union, many of which have now concluded, and in part, those talks have been to tap into the British market as well. In the event of Brexit, the UK would, naturally, have to renegotiate all of those trade deals, should the UK wish to have similar levels of access to those markets, and should those nations still wish to have access to the UK markets. This poses manifold problems. Primarily, if those negotiations are not concluded in a timely manner, then there may be hold-ups in distribution networks, especially important when considering the ‘just in time’ economy, and the necessity of Chinese steel. These hold-ups could be damaging to Eurasian cooperation as they would have repercussions on the entirety of the continent, should the orders be subsequently shipped on elsewhere. Additionally, as a problem, there would be political tensions between the EU and the UK. Should the UK conclude swift trade talks with the other nations which it had taken the EU years to negotiate, potentially emerging from those talks with more favourable deals than that of the EU, there would be increasing tensions within the largest economically cooperative entity in the world to push for better terms. This could too threaten the various Asia and Eurasia wide cooperative groups, such as the Russian-led Eurasian Union, and CIS, which could see favourable terms given to some member states, and non-favourable terms given to some others.

Finally, there is the problem of Russia, and the perennial interferer, the United States. Despite the departure of the NSA, John Bolton, Trump remains a wild card and a destabilising force. If Britain’s exit from the EU is messy and leads to fractious relationships between the UK and Eurasian states – Russia, former-Soviet states, non-EU European nations, and the Middle East – possibly off the back of rushed, poor or otherwise limited trade deals, then Britain will turn to its special relation. If Johnson and Trump cooperate, in whatever guise, then that could lead to considerable US interference in the UK, and potentially directly in Eurasian states themselves. This interference could become a deep concern for Eurasian cooperation, especially if the entitlement of America leads to a familiar sequence of events, as seen throughout history whenever America becomes involved in events beyond their sphere of influence.

Overall, whilst at present, there is a great deal of cooperation, incredibly successful, within Eurasia, there is considerable scope for discord and problems, notably from Brexit, which has also led to many Eurasian nations taking their eyes off the ball as regards the Middle East. This dangerous political and economic activity has the potential to wreck many years and decades of constructive groundwork which lays the basis for economic and political unity and cooperation across the entirety of Eurasia, which I sincerely hope is an event which does not come to pass.

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