Year 2018 Marks The Rise Of The East And Decline Of The West

Vladimir Putin got elected President of Russia for the fourth term. I feel that Putin can be easily considered the most powerful leader in the world because he is influencing world events more than any other leader. China’s President Xi JinPing is also a very powerful leader. Under his leadership, China is influencing world events as well as domestic policies in a big way. None of the western leaders can really be considered powerful.    

By Dr. Sawraj Singh

Events of 2018 made the consistent trends of rise of the East and decline of the West clearer. Overall, Russia, China and India gained influence while America and the western countries lost influence. We can see this from a military or economic perspective. Russia continues to score in the military field. America’s decision to withdraw its troops from Syria will be seen by most people in the world as a big victory for Russia and a loss for the western countries. America’s decision to withdraw troops from Afghanistan may also be perceived as its decreasing influence.  The western countries were able to dethrone almost any ruler whom they did not like. Saddam Hussein and Gaddafi were ousted from power. However, they were unable to get rid of Assad in Syria. Russia continues to have an edge in military technology and weaponry.

Vladimir Putin got elected President of Russia for the fourth term. I feel that Putin can be easily considered the most powerful leader in the world because he is influencing world events more than any other leader. China’s President Xi JinPing is also a very powerful leader. Under his leadership, China is influencing world events as well as domestic policies in a big way. None of the western leaders can really be considered powerful.

Donald Trump is facing growing opposition from the American Congress to a point that the American Government had to be partially shut down. There is a talk about impeaching the President. In England, Theresa May is facing tough opposition not only from the Labor Party, but also from her own party on the question of Brexit. Angela Merkel in Germany, who was considered the most powerful western leader, has decided not to run in the next election. France’s Emmanuel Macron is considered a very weak leader. He is facing a great turmoil with the Yellow Vest movement.

In 2018, we saw the Trans-Atlantic gap widening further. America not only started a trade war with China, but its policies also brought it in growing conflict with Europe. We can see the extent of this widening gap from Macron’s statement that Europe needs its own independent army to protect it from Russia, China and America. America was not too pleased by it being equated with Russia and China as Europe’s adversaries.

In spite of the set back by demonetization and the GST, Indian economy grew at the fastest rate among the major powers of the world. Indian economy is expected to overtake England soon to become the fifth largest economy of the world, and in the middle of the century, it is expected to surpass the American economy, becoming the second largest economy of the world after China.

The year 2018 saw continually improving relations between Russia and China, and between Russia and India. Relations between China and India also showed much improvement compared to the year before when Doklam incident strained relations. S-400 missile deal was the high mark of Russia- India relations. Improved Economic cooperation between China and India was the main trend of India- China relations.

North Korea and Iran changed the perception about themselves. America had projected them as an Axis of Evil, and as irresponsible war mongers. However, it was America which pulled out of the nuclear treaty with Iran, while Iran was complying fully with the treaty. Similarly, North Korea showed much more prudent behavior than America in the Korean peninsula. It appeared that the American Me Too movement will have tremendous response in India when Bollywood enthusiastically embraced the movement. However, the movement has almost completely fizzled out in spite of some response from the feminists and pseudo-Marxists. People at large have almost completely rejected this movement.

Dr. Sawraj Singh, MD F.I.C.S. is the Chairman of the Washington State Network for Human Rights and Chairman of the Central Washington Coalition for Social Justice. He can be reached at sawrajsingh@hotmail.com.

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