Is a New Cold War Over the Horizons?

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Recent years have witnessed some important crises engulfing major global powers across the globe. Many pundits have rushed to the conclusion that a new Cold War has now been in the making with the United States, the existing global hegemon, facing the challenges posed by China, the aspirant hegemon, and Russia, the former super power. The strategic challenges posed by Russia’s military assertiveness in Ukraine to the foundational logic of the post-Cold War era security order in Europe and China’s growing strategic and territorial claims in its neighborhood along with the steep rise in its material power capabilities, appear to have led many analysts to ask whether the world is now on the brink of a new Cold War.

 

Many analysts of realist persuasion argue that as the existing hegemon, the United States will not tolerate China’s rise for much longer as this would sooner or later hollow out the American strategic primacy in East and Southeast Asia and then across the globe. Therefore, as the power transition theory assumes, the United States would do well to adopt a strategic outlook, whereby the number one American goal should be to help contain China’s growing influence by pivoting the bulk of United States’ military capabilities to East Asia as well as strengthening bilateral security cooperation with traditional American allies in the region. Similarly, it would make strategic sense should the United States encourage its European allies to improve their military capabilities within NATO and put strong resistance to Putin’s Russia. Left unchecked, Russia might possibly continue its efforts to eat away western primacy in Central and Eastern Europe by threatening NATO’ easternmost allies and incessantly resorting to its time-honored divide and rule politics vis-à-vis western European countries.

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