The multipolar world. Interview with Raphael Machado (Brasil)

 

The multipolar world. Interview with Raphael Machado

 

Natella Speranskaya: The collapse of the Soviet Union meant the cancellation of the Yalta system of international relations and the triumph of the single hegemon - the United States, and as a consequence, transformation of the bipolar world order to the unipolar model. Nevertheless, some analysts are still talking about a possible return to the bipolar model. How do you feel about this hypothesis? Is there a likelihood of emergence of a power capable of challenging the global hegemon?

 

Raphael Machado: Whenever the possibility of a return to the bipolar model is mentioned the major contender for the place previously occupied by the USSR is usually considered to be China, specially because of its rising economic and military capabilities. This is a possible scenario, but it isn’t really as desirable as we could initially think, because since Deng Xiaoping’s capitalist reforms China’s economic partnership with the United States has grown stronger, as have the diplomatic contacts between both countries. Hence, a bipolar world where the poles are represented by the U.S. and China possibly doesn’t offer a real anti-globalist alternative for the oppressed peoples of the world.

 

Another contender, though a bit less likely, is Russia, as heir to both the Soviet Union and the Russian Empire. Here we’re talking about an interesting scenario for us anti-globalists, because unlike in the previous scenario, here we can see a real and profound ontological difference between the two possible poles of a bipolar world order. And this shows itself clearly in world affairs when we notice the fact that russophobia is way more present in American mediatic rhetorics than sinophobia. If the U.S. is so Russophobe that can only mean that it instinctively sees Russia as the biggest threat to is global hegemony, its imperialistic world order and materialistic way of life.

 

Natella Speranskaya: Zbigniew Brzezinski openly admits that the U.S. is gradually losing its influence. Here it is possible to apply the concept of "imperial overstretch", introduced by renowned historian Paul Kennedy. Perhaps, America has faced that, what was previously experienced by the Soviet Union. How do you assess the current state of the U.S.?

 

Raphael Machado: Indeed, it’s very possible to apply this concept of “imperial overstretch” to the current state of the U.S. foreign policy. As mentioned it’s a state previously experienced by the Soviet Union before its collapse. But we could easily also establish parallels with the late Roman Empire of the late Byzantine Empire, who also engaged in so many foreign military adventures to compensate their economic problems (or maybe to distract the masses) that eventually they saw themselves in a situation of “overstretching” where they couldn’t manage and defend all the borders and strategic positions of their empires, and so these empires fragmented or where invaded by barbarians.

 

The contemporary U.S. military situation is not so different, then, from a stage that many decadent, and eventually dead, empires have experienced. It’s possible do see desperation in its eagerness to participate in more and more military adventures, most of which the U.S. has showed incapable of winning, even when their opponents are completely backward and almost unarmed. And from the rhetorics of their politicians and burocrats we can see that there is no end to american imperialistic eagerness to invade countries, to stage coups against popular leaders and to inflame pseudo-revolutions all around the world.

 

It’s true that we should mourn every time the U.S. manages to invade another country, killing thousands and destroying the cultural and historical heritage of many traditions. But at the same time, the more the U.S. entangles itself in conflicts it’s incapable of winning the closest it is to its own death and probable fragmentation.

 

Natella Speranskaya: The loss of global influence of the U.S. means no more, no less, as the end of the unipolar world. But here the question arises as - to which model will happen the transition in the nearest future? On the one hand, we have all the prerequisites for the emergence of the multipolar world, on the other – we face the risk of encountering non-polarity, which would mean a real chaos.

 

Raphael Machado: Between the options given, a multipolar world order is undeniably the best one. But for it to emerge and remove the threat of the chaos of non-polarity a synchronicity between two events is necessary. The decadence of American hegemony and the end of the unipolar world must coincide with the ascension of regional and continental powers to the status of global powers, so that a multipolar order can be built and the vacuum left by the U.S. can be occupied. So it’s necessary for us to promote integration between countries belonging to the same civilizations and the strengthening of anti-globalist movements, and wait for the right moment to strike and establish the multipolar world.

 

Natella Speranskaya: The project of "counter-hegemony," developed by Cox, aims to expose the existing order in international relations and raise the rebellion against it. For this, Cox calls for the creation of counter-hegemonic bloc, which will include those political actors who reject the existing hegemony. The basis of the unipolar model imposed by the United States, is a liberal ideology. From this we can conclude that the basis of the multipolar model just the same has to be based on some ideology. Which ideology, in your opinion, can take replace the counter-hegemonic one, capable of uniting a number of political actors who do not agree with the hegemony of the West?

 

Raphael Machado: The most adequate ideology for a counter-hegemonic bloc and for a multipolar model is something yet to be built. In this sense we notice the importance of Alexandr Dugin’s Fourth Political Theory as an invitation to reflect on the possibility and necessity of this task and also as a blueprint from which we may start this work of ideological construction. But, in accordance with the essence of the multipolar model it’s possible to say in advance that each civilization, nation, religion, race or people, even down to the most local level shall make a contribution to this task and maybe offer its own version of the new ideology. If the enemy offers a one-size-fits-all ideological model where all traditional identities and collective bonds must be dissolved and exchanged for a materialistic capitalist society based on illusions of abstract humanity, we must offer an alternative based on notions of real existence, based on the same traditional identities and collective bonds that our enemy wishes to extinguish. This is the only possible path for true diversity to exist worldwide.

 

Considering this there’s also a huge anti-liberal ideological tradition from which we can select the most interesting elements, after a necessary deconstruction, for the construction of this Fourth Political Theory, and we could mention here not only previous great political theories like Marxism-Leninism and Fascism, as other anti-liberal movements like the Conservative Revolution or hybrid constructions like National-Bolshevism.

 

Natella Speranskaya: If we project the multipolar model on the economic world map, then we’ll get the coexistence of multiple poles, and at the same time, will create a complete matrix for the emergence of a new economy - outside of Western capitalist discourse. In your opinion, is the concept of “autarky of big spaces”, suggested by List, applicable for this?

 

Raphael Machado: The concept of “autarky of big spaces” may well be the most applicable for a multipolar economic order. But its implementation will probably be much more difficult than simply ending American global political and military hegemony. And the reason for this is the stage in which the process of globalization has advanced and also the virtual and extremely fluid nature of post-modern economics. Although the U.S. still works as something like the heart of capitalism, the process of globalization allowed for the expansion of capitalism in such a way that it now pervades almost all human relations everywhere.

 

In this sense, the heart of capitalism is in many places at the same time. If Wall Street falls it could well be replaced by Beijing or Berlin and the world would still be subjected to capitalist exploration. So I’d say that before we can establish a multipolar “autarky of big spaces”, capitalism must be fought and defeated at local levels, through grass-root popular mobilization of communities by anti-globalist movements and organizations. This is specially true when we’re talking about resistance to capitalism from inside liberal-controlled countries, like most countries today, even in the Third World.

 

Obviously, when possible, the countries which already defy American capitalist global hegemony as a whole, like Russia, Iran, Venezuela, Cuba, North Korea and others, should strengthen their economic relations with one another to start creating a global economic system outside the boundaries of liberal capitalism, in preparation for the ascension of the multipolar order.

 

Natella Speranskaya: We are now on the verge of paradigmatic transition from the unipolar world order model to the multi-polar one, where the actors are no more nation-states, but entire civilizations. Recently in Russia was published a book "Theory of multipolar world," written by the Doctor of Political and Social Sciences, Professor Alexander Dugin. This book lays the theoretical foundation, basis, from which a new historical stage can start, and describes a number of changes both in the foreign policy of nation-states and in today's global economy, which involve a transition to the multipolar model. Of course, this also means the emergence of a new diplomatic language. Do you believe that multipolarity is the natural state of the world and that transition to the multipolar model is inevitable?

 

Raphael Machado: I do believe that unipolarity is an ahistorical aberration and, consequently, that multipolarity is the natural state of things. We need only to visualize the past to perceive that at any historical moment there were many influent powers and empires at regional or continental levels all around the world, coexisting in some sense, even if trying to conquer one another. In this sense, unipolarity is a very aberrant phenomenon, existing only for two decades.

 

It may be thought that this natural state of multipolarity was only possible in the past because of the relative isolation of civilizations, and that unipolarity is the natural consequence of globalization. And there may be some truth in that. But it isn’t a necessary truth. Indeed, globalization amplifies contacts and exchanges between civilizations and peoples, and obviously makes it easier for a strong civilization to disseminate its influence over the world.

 

But unipolarity is only conceivable in this world dominated by a decadent and excluding Logos, where the natural consequence of the dialectical confront between civilizations, ideologies or peoples is the final domination of a single reality, to be established as a new order over the world. Fighting unipolarity means then a very profound war, where we need to uproot completely even the intellectual conceivability of a unipolar order. Through this, the return to a multipolar world, which is a natural trend as I believe, will be more guaranteed and secure and a return to a unipolar order will be made very difficult. And this natural trend can be easily seen in the strengthening of regional and continental alliances outside the American sphere of influence or of countries opposed to its global hegemony.