Dialogue of Civilizations on New Architecture of International Relations

The world now is fundamentally different from what it was just a few months ago. After putting forward by Russia of «the Putin’s ultimatum» to the United States demanding equal guarantees of strategic security and the joint statement in Beijing by Putin and Xi claiming creation of new architecture of international relations that were both rejected by Washington and NATO, and after invasion of Ukraine by Russia, the world will no longer be what it was only few months back.

The world has already changed fundamentally and continues to change faster and deeper than it is seen or imagined by most politicians and observers. These changes are so fundamental that wrong assessment and misunderstanding of the ongoing processes increase threats not only to the existing world relations and economic system, but to the very existence of mankind.

At the heart of the changes lies the conflict not just between individual countries and military-political blocs, but between the main world civilizations. This conflict is global in nature. It does not proceed as several local conflicts divided in time and space generated by contradictions and clashes of economic or political interests between individual powers or blocks. This conflict was initiated by great civilizations, including the Chinese, Russian, Indian and Arab that declared impossibility of their development under domination of one civilization – the Western, lead by the United States.

The rebellious civilizations, demanded not only change in the system of international relations and cessation of dominance of Western civilization, but also rejection of ideological pressure, as well as fundamental change in moral principles of international relations.  They demanded the right of each of the civilizations to build its own state, social and economic system on the basis of its own civilizational traditions, values and mentality.

Starting from the XVI century, Western European civilization began acquiring leading position in science, literature, art, economy and military field. That allowed the West to dominate the world, and that domination was based on ideas and values of capitalism, Western variant of democracy and liberalism that were exported and imposed on other civilizations. In XXI century, that dominance began to disappear, and the Western ideas and values are now rejected by other civilizations.   

Obtaining equality in international affairs is complicated by the fact that rejecting Western ideologies and insisting on impossibility of further effective and fair development of civilizations under domination of these ideas, the rebels cannot present new ideologies to mankind, but only basic principles for new architecture of international relations.

The West is not yet ready to give up its dominance, and Russia was the first of the rebellious civilizations to turn to military aggravation of relations by taking back Ukraine that is considered in Moscow as part of the «Russian world», from the Western influence. Having civilizational conflict at its heart, the Russian “special military operation” in Ukraine started aggravating into global and full-scale, albeit hybrid war between the West and Russia.

There can be two ways of further development.

The first path leads to further globalization of the conflict and drawing into the war of other European countries, including Poland, Moldova, Finland, the Baltic countries, with the subsequent involvement of NATO in the conflict.

That can also initiate emergence of military hotbeds in other regions of the world, including Central Asia, Transcaucasia, the Far East with the invasion by China of Taiwan and conflict between two Koreas… This path will inevitably lead to full-scale nuclear world war and death of billions of people.

The second way involves a gradual transition from confrontation to dialogue. Only this path will make it possible to overcome existing contradictions between civilizations and jointly develop new architecture of international relations.

However, at present, the armed conflict in Ukraine is growing rapidly, contributing to the escalation of the conflict of civilizations into direct military confrontation. The leaders of the states participating in the conflict are not yet aware of the size and scope of threats and risks posed by the conflict of civilizations. They are not ready to make concessions and to compromise, they hope that they will be able to keep their states and peoples out of direct military clashes and protect them from destruction.

In this situation, it is necessary to start the negotiation process as dialogue of civilizations by public organizations, foundations, think tanks, with the participation of influential public figures, under the auspices of international organizations, for example, the UN.  

Joint development of a new ideology through exchange of ideas and through interaction of representatives of all major civilizations becomes clear necessity.  

This process has to be organized in the form of Track-2, as unofficial and hidden from mass media and general public, without pressure and interference from politicians and state structures, but with consent of the heads of states that are involved in the conflict. 

The negotiation process should involve independent public figures, political scientists and economists who are free from political obligations and influence of financial and business groups actively involved in confrontation. Participants should have high authority and are able to convey results of negotiations in the form of agreed proposals to end the hybrid world war between civilizations and for creation of new architecture of international relations to their state leaders.

The compromises found and the proposals developed by Track-2 dialogue should create basis for the start of formal negotiations between the governments and for development of new system of international relations in the world.

Valery Morozov

24 May 2022

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