The U.S. History
Considering the war of terror, one basically means the fight against international terrorism. Currently, “international terrorism” is a politically correct euphemism for Islamic terrorism. Thus, the Middle East is emphasized in this case. This region is in the state of constant internal conflict, external pressure, as well as the political and economic crisis in some countries. Ethnic problems are also of big concern. Accumulation of these issues, lack of real actions addressing them, and a number of erroneous decisions of external actors lead to aggravation and deepening of problems. In this case, masses begin to seek an outlet, in the form of religious terrorism.
It is important to state that world experience has shown that combating terrorism is not enough to solve this global problem. It cannot be limited to responding to already committed crimes. Armed struggle against terroristic activities of certain groups becomes useless and bloody because bombings and mass hostage taking occur more often. At the same time, dealing with the issue requires more than responding to the repressive measures as state-sanctioned actions aimed at solving immediate problems cannot eliminate the root causes of terrorism and identify its origins. Efforts undertaken by the international community in the fight against terrorism are defensive and responsive rather than offensive and proactive.
Thus, I would advise the next president of the United States to join forces with both developed and developing countries in fighting terrorism. This decision is motivated by a lack of unity in the anti-terrorism organizations. Relatively speaking, the struggle is carried on by three competing coalitions. One of them consists of the NATO countries and the League of Arab States, while the other includes Russia, Iran, Iraq, and Syria. The third coalition has been established on the initiative of Saudi Arabia, which probably may help ISIS to fight against Assad and divide the territory of Iraq and Syria among the member countries of the coalition. Therefore, in this situation, collaborative efforts of all countries interested in the elimination of terrorism are necessary. It means establishing only one official coalition with clearly developed strategies and restrictions.
The second piece of advice to the next president is to eliminate the factors of Islamic fundamentalism emergence and minimize its effect on country or region. The civil war in Syria and Iraq’s statehood related issues has enabled ISIS to capture vast oil-rich areas in the heart of the Middle East. In addition to extensive networks that ISIS and Al-Qaeda have in Africa, Asia, and Europe, there are less ambitious Islamist groups in other countries. They are also advocating for the construction of Islamic caliphate and resorting to terrorism as a method of achieving political goals. Internal factors of Islamic fundamentalism emergence include such social and economic aspects as poverty, unemployment, unfair distribution of resources. Thus, the factors of Islamic fundamentalism should be eliminated.
The third piece of advice is to gradually reduce the use of oil and switch to the use of alternative energy sources. This decision is motivated by the fact that terrorists greatly depend on oil. This step will seriously undermine the economic basis of terrorist groups and make a substantial contribution to the end of the war of terror. An efficient operation of Islamic terrorists would have been impossible without financial support. Training, ammunition, logistics, intelligence and preparation for an act of terrorism cost a lot of money. The main terrorists’ sources of income are retail of seized oil, smuggling, extortion, and assistance of the oil sheiks of Arabia. Thus, terrorists will lose their main source of income and will not be able to continue their activities at this pace if oil will lose its value as an energy resource.
My ideal of a new world order is a nonpolar world. There would be no significant center of power or a group of countries able to dominate at the global level. It could be neither the USA nor China, or Russia. No one would be able to ensure global dominance. In this sense, the nonpolar world would be something new in the history of mankind, in my opinion. Thus, in the new ideal world order, all great powers now playing a leading role would lose their significance. Superpowers would be eliminated. In fact, this is happening right now.
In other words, I believe that we live in a time when small and medium-sized countries, as well as regional conflicts, form a new world order and its agenda. Today, there is a huge number of regional conflicts which cannot be resolved rather than one large nuclear potential conflict between the two nuclear powers. States freeze conflicts and extinguish them, but they use mainly weapons, armies, and tools of the Cold War. However, in fact, today’s world order has been imposed by medium and small countries. They have tended to be within the sphere of influence of such superpowers as the United States and the Soviet Union. However, for the moment, this dominance tendency is significantly changing. Medium and small countries plunge big countries and former superpowers into their conflicts.
Thus, big countries are becoming more dependent on regional issues. What is more, it appears that they are not able to solve them, because they have neither experience nor tools and consequently, military and political training. They still count nuclear missiles, sign ridiculous contracts, and engage in arms control not realizing that the time for that has passed long ago. The world has changed too much.
In addition, the problem is that the whole system of international relations and international organizations, including the UN Security Council, international law with its principles, and other institutions, appears to be inherited from the post World War II period. Such systems are regarded as totally inadequate taking into consideration current circumstances. These organizations are unable to solve global problems in a proper way. In general, the United Nations and especially the Security Council are quite old organizations. It is not clear why these countries are there and why they have the right to resolve the world’s problems, although they have not resolved a single global problem.
Thus, considering the aspects mentioned above, my ideal of a new world order is a nonpolar world, where politics would remind some improvisation. In addition, there would be no global strategy. The new world order, in contrast to the previous ones, would develop uncontrollably. No one would try to influence this process deliberately. Neither Washington, nor Beijing, Moscow, or Brussels would realize what drives this world. It would be the period of global improvisation.
To answer that question, we need to clarify the concepts of the ‘collective good’ and the ‘individual good.’ The collective good is a good consumed by all people regardless of whether they pay for it or not. In turn, individual good is a good that can be divided among people in such a way that there will be no benefits or costs for other people. The effective provision of collective goods often requires government intervention while the provision of individual goods is a task of a market. Therefore, individual good is valuable to each individual person only.
The most vivid examples of the collective good prevailing over the individual good in the US domestic policy since 1950 are national defense, basic research, and anti-poverty programs. National defense expenditures have been constantly growing since the middle of 20th century. Even though there have been contradictory opinions as to whether the sums of money spent on national defense have been too high or too small, no one questioned the reasonableness of national security charges. The US National Defense has been aimed at continuous development and control of everything. Thus, the United States leaves no room even for half a chance of a possible attack on its territory. There are no much resources in the US, but it captures them in other countries under the pretext of introducing democracy. In this way, the United States provides themselves with the necessary reserves of resources and authority. This gives the US citizens a sense of confidence in the future, which is also a criterion of the collective good prevailing over the individual good.
When it comes to basic research, the US government has been trying to provide the collective good in the form of scientific knowledge in different spheres since the 1950s. US governmental agencies including the National Institutes of Health and National Science Foundation invest in basic research in physics, medicine, mathematics, and other disciplines.
Finally, it should be stated that the US anti-poverty programs are also a prominent aspect of collective good. It is quite obvious that people around the word would prefer to live in a prosperous society without poverty and need, However, even if this preference would be unified, the fight against poverty is not a task an individual is able to fulfill. No human being is capable of eliminating poverty as a social phenomenon due to the scale of the problem. For this particular reason, the taxation of rich people aimed at improving the living standards of the poor will benefit everyone in this case. As a result, citizens with low income would benefit because their standard of living would increase, and those who pay taxes would benefit because they would live in a society with fewer poor people. Thereby, collective good prevails over the individual good.