Thursday, December 16, 2004


Arnaud de Borchgrave paints a very disturbing picture of a "potential future scenario" of what the coming years will bring... Here's a sample. Read the rest!

One all-too-realistic geopolitical nightmare was a weapon of mass destruction terrorist attack on the U.S. West Coast. A nuclear device detonates in a container ship about to enter Long Beach, Calif. News had just broken about pollution of the U.S. food supply, most analysts assumed by transnational terrorism. The U.S. can prevail conventionally anywhere but seems helpless in coping with asymmetrical warfare.
In quick succession:
• The dollar ceases to be the world's reserve currency.
• The shaky coalition governing Iraq collapses and civil war breaks out between Sunnis and Shi'ites.
• Fear of the unknown produces a new consensus in the U.S. that global civilization is no longer America's business.
• U.S. client states are informed they are on their own. Congress abolishes global aid.
• Egypt loses its annual stipend of $2.5 billion; Taiwan and Israel are told they will must fend for themselves.
• Social trust becomes the new glue of society — bonding with like-minded neighbors with shared values.
• International coalitions dissolve and new ones emerge. China seizes new opportunities for its short- and long-range needs for raw materials in the developing world — from Brazil to sub-Saharan Africa's pockets of mineral wealth.
• The United States, Canada and Mexico form a new stand-alone alliance with Britain.
• Turkey, Israel and Iran become a new self-protection core against dysfunctional neighbors with no upward mobility.
• The European Union and Russia, in continuing decline, close ranks; EU inherits de facto responsibility for Africa south of the Sahara, plagued by genocidal wars and the AIDS epidemic.
• China and India, with one-third of the world's population, and competitive with Western countries in high-tech jobs and technology, form a de facto alliance.
• Pakistan's pro-American President Pervez Musharraf does not survive the ninth assassination plot; an Islamist general takes over and appoints A.Q. Khan, former chief executive of an international nuclear black market for the benefit of America's "axis of evil" enemies, as Pakistan's new president.
• The House of Saud is shaken to its foundations as a clutch of younger royal princes, who have served in the armed forces, arrest the plus 70-year-olds now in charge — known as the Sudairi seven — and call for the kingdom's first elections.
• Osama bin Laden returns to Saudi Arabia and is welcomed as a national hero. Bin Laden scores an overwhelming plurality in the elections and is the country's most popular leader.
• A.Q. Khan sends bin Laden his congratulations and dispatches to Riyadh his new defense minister, Gen. Hamid Gul, a former intelligence chief and admirer of the world's most wanted terrorist, who hates America with a passion. His mission is to negotiate a caliphate merging Pakistan's nuclear weapons with Saudi oil resources and monetary reserves.
• Absent the long-time global cop, and traditional alliances in shambles, transnational criminal enterprises thrive with unfettered access the world over.
• U.S. multinational companies, unable to protect their plants and employees, return whence they came.
• International airlines morph back into interregional air links.
• The EU can no longer cope with millions of North Africans and sub-Sahara Africans flooding into Spain, Italy, France, who roam freely and hungry in the rest of Europe. Islamist radicals sally out of their European slum tenements to besiege U.S. Embassies in protest of their jobless plight.
• Japan goes nuclear after U.S. troops withdraw from South Korea.

Coming geopolitical quakes - The Washington Times: Commentary - December 15, 2004