Tuesday, 20 December 2016

guerre de course

As we close in on a quarter of a century since the dissolution of the Soviet Union—26 December 1991, a day after Mikhail Gorbachev announced his resignation, it’s striking how Russia is a reflection for the US of its long and illustrious career of regime building and heavy-handed support of governments sympathetic to their world-view of transparency, liberal democratic institutions and free-markets.
Regardless of the extent ostensibly state-sponsored hacking affected the outcome of America’s presidential election, the intrusion into political party secrets and strategies ought to bear out investigation—and the victors would be gracious to remember that their data was compromised as well and there’s sure to be hell to pay later. In a world that was polarised and after the US could comfortably proclaim itself as the last-standing superpower, America’s meddling in politics was rampant and undeniable. From General Pershing in Mexico to the geopolitics of the Suez canal that ended the British Empire, and later from Iran to Afghanistan, arguably the cause for the collapse of the USSR, America has sought to engender a climate—as would any other nation within reason and within limits—favourable to its national interest. What do you think? Of course, Russia worked to undermine this engineering throughout, but as unopposed as America has imagined itself in the past few decades, the tonic of democracy and exceptionalism has soured and become something doctrinally unpalatable.