The Global Political Awakening and the New World Order

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There is a
new and unique development in human history that is taking place
around the world; it is unprecedented in reach and volume, and it
is also the greatest threat to all global power structures: the
‘global political awakening.’ The term was coined by Zbigniew
Brzezinski, and refers to the fact that, as Brzezinski wrote:

For the first
time in history almost all of humanity is politically activated,
politically conscious and politically interactive. Global activism
is generating a surge in the quest for cultural respect and economic
opportunity in a world scarred by memories of colonial or imperial
domination.

It is, in essence,
this massive ‘global political awakening’ which presents
the gravest and greatest challenge to the organized powers of globalization
and the global political economy: nation-states, multinational corporations
and banks, central banks, international organizations, military,
intelligence, media and academic institutions. The Transnational
Capitalist Class (TCC), or ‘Superclass’ as David Rothkopf
refers to them, are globalized like never before. For the first
time in history, we have a truly global and heavily integrated elite.
As elites have globalized their power, seeking to construct a ‘new
world order’ of global governance and ultimately global government,
they have simultaneously globalized populations.

The ‘Technological
Revolution’ (or ‘Technetronic’ Revolution, as Brzezinski
termed it in 1970) involves two major geopolitical developments.
The first is that as technology advances, systems of mass communication
rapidly accelerate, and the world’s people are able to engage
in instant communication with one another and gain access to information
from around the world. In it, lies the potential – and ultimately
a central source – of a massive global political awakening.
Simultaneously, the Technological Revolution has allowed elites
to redirect and control society in ways never before imagined, ultimately
culminating in a global scientific dictatorship, as many have warned
of since the early decades of the 20th century. The potential for
controlling the masses has never been so great, as science unleashes
the power of genetics, biometrics, surveillance, and new forms of
modern eugenics; implemented by a scientific elite equipped with
systems of psycho-social control (the use of psychology in controlling
the masses).

What is
the “Global Political Awakening”?

To answer this
question, it is best to let Zbigniew Brzezinski speak for himself,
since it is his term. In 2009, Zbigniew Brzezinski published an
article based on a speech he delivered to the London-based Chatham
House in their academic journal, International Affairs. Chatham
House, formerly the Royal Institute of International Relations,
is the British counterpart to the US-based Council on Foreign Relations,
both of which were founded in 1921 as “Sister Institutes”
to coordinate Anglo-American foreign policy. His article, “Major
foreign policy challenges for the next US President,” aptly
analyzes the major geopolitical challenges for the Obama administration
in leading the global hegemonic state at this critical juncture.
Brzezinski refers to the ‘global political awakening’
as “a truly transformative event on the global scene,”
since:

For the first
time in human history almost all of humanity is politically activated,
politically conscious and politically interactive. There are only
a few pockets of humanity left in the remotest corners of the
world that are not politically alert and engaged with the political
turmoil and stirrings that are so widespread today around the
world. The resulting global political activism is generating a
surge in the quest for personal dignity, cultural respect and
economic opportunity in a world painfully scarred by memories
of centuries-long alien colonial or imperial domination.

Brzezinski
posits that the ‘global political awakening’ is one of
the most dramatic and significant developments in geopolitics that
has ever occurred, and it “is apparent in radically different
forms from Iraq to Indonesia, from Bolivia to Tibet.” As the
Economist explained, “Though America has focused on
its notion of what people want (democracy and the wealth created
by free trade and open markets), Brzezinski points in a different
direction: It’s about dignity.” Further, argues Brzezinski,
“The worldwide yearning for human dignity is the central challenge
inherent in the phenomenon of global political awakening.”

In 2005, Brzezinski
wrote an essay for The American Interest entitled, “The Dilemma
of the Last Sovereign,” in which he explains the geopolitical
landscape that America and the world find themselves in. He wrote
that, “For most states, sovereignty now verges on being a legal
fiction,” and he critically assessed the foreign policy objectives
and rhetoric of the Bush administration. Brzezinski has been an
ardent critic of the “war on terror” and the rhetoric
inherent in it, namely that of the demonization of Islam and Muslim
people, which constitute one of the fastest growing populations
and the fastest growing religion in the world. Brzezinski fears
the compound negative affects this can have on American foreign
policy and the objectives and aspirations of global power. He writes:

America needs
to face squarely a centrally important new global reality: that
the world’s population is experiencing a political awakening unprecedented
in scope and intensity, with the result that the politics of populism
are transforming the politics of power. The need to respond to
that massive phenomenon poses to the uniquely sovereign America
an historic dilemma: What should be the central definition of
America’s global role?

Brzezinski
explains that formulating a foreign policy based off of one single
event – the September 11th terror attacks – has both legitimized
illegal measures (torture, suspension of habeas corpus, etc) and
has launched and pacified citizens to accepting the “global
war on terror,” a war without end. The rhetoric and emotions
central to this global foreign policy created a wave of patriotism
and feelings of redemption and revenge. Thus, Brzezinski explains:

There was
no need to be more precise as to who the terrorists actually were,
where they came from, or what historical motives, religious passions
or political grievances had focused their hatred on America. Terrorism
thus replaced Soviet nuclear weapons as the principal threat,
and terrorists (potentially omnipresent and generally identified
as Muslims) replaced communists as the ubiquitous menace.

Brzezinski
explains that this foreign policy, which has inflamed anti-Americanism
around the world, specifically in the Muslim world, which was the
principle target population of ‘terrorist’ rhetoric, has
in fact further inflamed the ‘global political awakening’.
Brzezinski writes that:

[T]he central
challenge of our time is posed not by global terrorism, but rather
by the intensifying turbulence caused by the phenomenon of global
political awakening. That awakening is socially massive and politically
radicalizing.

This ‘global
political awakening’, Brzezinski writes, while unique in its
global scope today, originates in the ideas and actions of the French
Revolution, which was central in “transforming modern politics
through the emergence of a socially powerful national consciousness.”
Brzezinski explains the evolution of the ‘awakening’:

During the
subsequent 216 years, political awakening has spread gradually
but inexorably like an ink blot. Europe of 1848, and more generally
the nationalist movements of the late 19th and early 20th centuries,
reflected the new politics of populist passions and growing mass
commitment. In some places that combination embraced utopian Manichaeism
for which the Bolshevik Revolution of 1917, the Fascist assumption
of power in Italy in 1922, and the Nazi seizure of the German
state in 1933 were the launch-pads. The political awakening also
swept China, precipitating several decades of civil conflict.
Anti-colonial sentiments galvanized India, where the tactic of
passive resistance effectively disarmed imperial domination, and
after World War II anti-colonial political stirrings elsewhere
ended the remaining European empires. In the western hemisphere,
Mexico experienced the first inklings of populist activism already
in the 1860s, leading eventually to the Mexican Revolution of
the early 20th century.

Ultimately,
what this implies is that – regardless of the final results
of past awakenings – what is central to the concept of a ‘political
awakening’ is the population – the people – taking
on a political and social consciousness and subsequently, partaking
in massive political and social action aimed at generating a major
shift and change, or revolution, in the political, social and economic
realms. Thus, no social transformation presents a greater or more
direct challenge to entrenched and centralized power structures
– whether they are political, social or economic in nature.
Brzezinski goes on to explain the evolution of the ‘global
political awakening’ in modern times:

It is no
overstatement to assert that now in the 21st century the population
of much of the developing world is politically stirring and in
many places seething with unrest. It is a population acutely conscious
of social injustice to an unprecedented degree, and often resentful
of its perceived lack of political dignity. The nearly universal
access to radio, television and increasingly the Internet is creating
a community of shared perceptions and envy that can be galvanized
and channeled by demagogic political or religious passions. These
energies transcend sovereign borders and pose a challenge both
to existing states as well as to the existing global hierarchy,
on top of which America still perches.

Brzezinski
explains that several central areas of the ‘global political
awakening’, such as China, India, Egypt, Bolivia, the Muslims
in the Middle East, North Africa, Southeast Asia and increasingly
in Europe, as well as Indians in Latin America, “increasingly
are defining what they desire in reaction to what they perceive
to be the hostile impact on them of the outside world. In differing
ways and degrees of intensity they dislike the status quo, and many
of them are susceptible to being mobilized against the external
power that they both envy and perceive as self-interestedly preoccupied
with that status quo.” Brzezinski elaborates on the specific
group most affected by this awakening:

The youth
of the Third World are particularly restless and resentful. The
demographic revolution they embody is thus a political time-bomb,
as well. With the exception of Europe, Japan and America, the
rapidly expanding demographic bulge in the 25-year-old-and-under
age bracket is creating a huge mass of impatient young people.
Their minds have been stirred by sounds and images that emanate
from afar and which intensify their disaffection with what is
at hand. Their potential revolutionary spearhead is likely to
emerge from among the scores of millions of students concentrated
in the often intellectually dubious "tertiary level"
educational institutions of developing countries. Depending on
the definition of the tertiary educational level, there are currently
worldwide between 80 and 130 million "college" students.
Typically originating from the socially insecure lower middle
class and inflamed by a sense of social outrage, these millions
of students are revolutionaries-in-waiting, already semi-mobilized
in large congregations, connected by the Internet and pre-positioned
for a replay on a larger scale of what transpired years earlier
in Mexico City or in Tiananmen Square. Their physical energy and
emotional frustration is just waiting to be triggered by a cause,
or a faith, or a hatred.

Brzezinski
thus posits that to address this new global “challenge”
to entrenched powers, particularly nation-states that cannot sufficiently
address the increasingly non-pliant populations and populist demands,
what is required, is “increasingly supranational cooperation,
actively promoted by the United States.” In other words, Brzezinski
favours an increased and expanded ‘internationalization’,
not surprising considering he laid the intellectual foundations
of the Trilateral Commission. He explains that “Democracy per
se is not an enduring solution,” as it could be overtaken by
“radically resentful populism.” This is truly a new global
reality:

Politically
awakened mankind craves political dignity, which democracy can
enhance, but political dignity also encompasses ethnic or national
self-determination, religious self-definition, and human and social
rights, all in a world now acutely aware of economic, racial and
ethnic inequities. The quest for political dignity, especially
through national self-determination and social transformation,
is part of the pulse of self-assertion by the world’s underprivileged.

Thus, writes
Brzezinski, “An effective response can only come from a self-confident
America genuinely committed to a new vision of global solidarity.”
The idea is that to address the grievances caused by globalization
and global power structures, the world and America must expand and
institutionalize the process of globalization, not simply in the
economic sphere, but in the social and political as well. It is
a flawed logic, to say the least, that the answer to this problem
is to enhance and strengthen the systemic problems. One cannot put
out a fire by adding fuel.

Brzezinski
even wrote that, “Let it be said right away that supranationality
should not be confused with world government. Even if it were desirable,
mankind is not remotely ready for world government, and the American
people certainly do not want it.” Instead, Brzezinski argues,
America must be central in constructing a system of global governance,
“in shaping a world that is defined less by the fiction of
state sovereignty and more by the reality of expanding and politically
regulated interdependence.” In other words, not ‘global
government’ but ‘global governance’, which is simply
a rhetorical ploy, as ‘global governance’ – no matter
how overlapping, sporadic and desultory it presents itself, is in
fact a key step and necessary transition in the moves toward an
actual global government.

Thus, the rhetoric
and reality of a “global war on terror” in actuality further
inflames the ‘global political awakening’ as opposed to
challenging and addressing the issue. In 2007, Brzezinski told the
US Senate that the “War on terror” was a “mythical
historical narrative,” or in other words, a complete fiction.

Read
the rest of the article

July
12, 2010

Andrew Gavin
Marshall is a Research Associate with the Centre for Research on
Globalization (CRG). He is currently studying Political Economy
and History at Simon Fraser University.

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