Giant Wave of Final Decolonization in the Making

After the collapse of the bipolar world order, politicians and experts almost everywhere wiped the slate clean, leaving behind many political and socioeconomic theories. Decolonization defined as a dominant global development trend was among them. It happened partly because the global balance of power changed drastically and partly because the prevailing political concepts and narratives have become universal for a short time. Howevero0we ver, dumping the notion of decolonization was mainly because it benefitted the political establishment in the United States and former colonial powers. They proclaimed the process of decolonization completed and referred to it as an element of the Past supplanted by the imperatives of modernization, Europeanization, westernization, etc.

Грядущий «девятый вал» деколонизации

In reality, only two of its stages―attainment of formal political independence and sovereignty over natural resources―became history. Actual decolonization came with the third stage when China and a large group of rapidly developing economies had turned into the world’s manufacturing and assembly factories. This process was bolstered up and further spurred by the emancipation of Russia, which reemerged as one of the leading global players. Coming up is the next, and final, stage of actual decolonization. Its purpose is to acquire technological and financial independence and ability to parry military power or threat of force whatever its origin.

There are many factors, objective and subjective, that get in the way. These include political destabilization and pressure, redirection of financial flows, sanctions, wars, etc. But they will not have a critical impact if they are countered cleverly and all constructive and benevolent forces around the world pool their efforts in the spirit of cooperation. With such an understanding of global processes, the ongoing worldwide transformations no longer look like unpredictable and tragic chaotization of international relations but are being taken for what they actually are: the struggle for complete decolonization of the parts of the world that used to be dependent territories.


From fiasco to the final stage of decolonization

The issue of decolonization is not an integral part of the current political discourse. It is barely remembered or is presented as liberation from communist ideology and totalitarian rule It has been replaced by a discourse on modernization, Europeanization, westernization, democratization, (non) susceptibility to external influence, catching up development and integration into globalization [After 2006; Baltic 2006; Chrisman 2003; Durix 1998; Gueven 2015; Hitchcock 2010; Hoogvelt A. 2001; Ivison 2002; Kapoor 2008; Moore-Gilbert 1997]. The issue of decolonization is left completely to historians to deal with [Кредер 2005: 337-347][1]. Current international processes are not studied through the lens of decolonization.

Pushing the issue of decolonization to the sidelines of political discourse appears to be quite justified from the point of view of everyday consciousness. In fact, the colonial system collapsed a long time ago, former colonies have gained or won independence, the Soviet Union that supported developing countries is gone, there is no alternative to the universal global development, and developing countries no longer position themselves as belonging to the Third World that needs further decolonization [Moscetti 2015][2].

However, formal independence, governmental authorities and a seat in the United Nations are not synonymous with real independence[3]. Shaking off the control of colonial powers, proclaiming sovereignty and pursuing seemingly autonomous internal and external policies are not the same as real sovereignty [Ткаченко 2006][4].

If decolonization is studied in a historical perspective as a process aimed at building truly independent, self-sufficient, politically stable, and economically successful modern states, one must admit that it often failed to achieve its goals and stopped somewhere halfway.

What makes the current stage of evolution in the global economy and politics quite noteworthy is that, paradoxically, now there are better conditions for systemic implementation of the same tasks despite overall disarray in international relations.

Moreover, resetting these tasks under new circumstances becomes the ultimate imperative.


The Past and Present of Decolonization

World War II delivered a staggering blow to the colonial system, but it was not crushed, just badly shaken.

Colonial powers, the United States and the Soviet Union― all of them made their own contributions, albeit different, to the impending collapse of the colonial system. They had lost the status of global leaders as well as political, military, but most importantly economic possibilities to run their colonies. They could no longer keep under their control the peoples who were striving to break free.

And on top of it all, the U.S. favored their liberation, because the colonial system could not benefit the Americans who needed direct access to the territories that were tightly protected by colonial powers from the outside world. The U.S. sought political access in a bid to expand its influence and assert its dominance within the capitalist system. Economic access would have given it an opportunity for unhindered and uncontrolled management of new markets [Gibbs 1991: 65][5].

The Soviet Union began to provide support to colonial countries later. Assistance to their national liberation movements became one of its main foreign-policy and economic priorities. The Third World was generally viewed as a reserve potential for the world socialist system. Countries of socialist orientation were regarded as junior partners in the struggle against colonialism and imperialism; they had to be assisted to stay on the chosen path of alternative development, both in theory and in practice [Александров 1985; Африка 1976; Африка 1984; Брутенц 1982; Волянский 1983; Государство 1975; Гура, Несук 1981; Иванов 1984; Кива 1978; Ким 1982; Право 1979; Старушенко 1976; Старушенко 1977; Ульяновский 1976; Чиркин 1984][6] with which at the turn of the 1990s was completely torn [[Восточный 2001; Васильев 2001; Непомнин 1998; Новейшая 2001][7].

However, the Soviet economic support, including assistance in training personnel, and American investments simply could not make up for the non-existent economies of the new states. The latter remained economically, and therefore politically, dependent. The independence they had gained or won was largely formal or fictitious, as we pointed out in the beginning.

The situation slightly changed later when developing countries, primarily oil producing ones, nationalized foreign extracting companies, and the UN General Assembly solemnly proclaimed their sovereignty over their natural resources[8]. The next step was a splendid and overwhelmingly successful special operation of the developing world―to punish the Americans and Europeans for supporting Israel in its new war with Arabs―to hike the price of energy and other mineral resources and make them much more expensive for the Western world [Amadeo 2018; Energy 2019].

The era of cheap oil when the Western economy was basically subsidized at the expense of the rest of the world was over―using their dominance in the oil and resource sector, Western companies essentially financed it by taking advantage of the difference between the price of natural resources and the price of industrial goods [Силкин 2017][9]. Industrialized countries responded by adopting a new model of socioeconomic development, costs notwithstanding, and breaking the connection between GDP growth and the consumption of raw materials and energy.

The policy of sustainable development based on energy saving and new materials allowed the West to devalue the role of the global resource sector controlled by developing countries as well as all of their political and economic achievements. Eventually it paved the way for the green economy, much touted by the West, the shale revolution, the climate agenda, decarbonization, and the use of renewable energy. All this was undertaken in order to reduce the West’s dependence on the import of natural resources [Порфирьев 2013][10].

On the contrary, developing countries failed to consolidate their success. They had no diversified industry or agriculture, modern infrastructure, qualified personnel or appropriate financial instruments where they could invest their fast fortunes, which flowed back into the West’s banks, property and economy.

China became the herald of the third stage of decolonization. For certain reasons, both objective and subjective, China and a handful of other “Asian Tigers” became a new center of global manufacturing, making most of the consumer goods selling in the world as well as labor- and energy-intensive products. Low-value-added production facilities, which Western countries did not want to have on their territory, were moved to Asia, Africa, and Latin America.

Deindustrialization of the West and the transformation of China and Co. into the main supplier of an increasingly broad range of goods, one of the biggest economies in the world, and the most promising market changed the situation drastically. Developing countries started to gain economic sovereignty [Schellekens 2013; Bhaumik 2009; Wolf 2016][11].

Apart from external resources needed for development, now they had their own ones, they acquired their own middle class, and created their own personnel training centers and think-tanks.

The part of the global economy which consists of former colonies, semi-colonies and once dependent territories is outpacing the Western world [The World 2015][12]. South-South trade is growing faster than that between developed countries or between developed and developing countries, mainly, albeit not entirely, due to the rapidly rising Chinese economy [Jianguo 2017][13].

The developing world that once was dependent on others now has its own geopolitical projects to pursue, its own vision of how international relations should be built, and its own integration programs. It has created new structures of its own (BRICS, Shanghai Cooperation Organization, etc.) and joined those created together with the West (G20) and designed to manage global development processes [Бордачёв 2017а; Энтин, Энтина  2017а][14].

The current stage of decolonization is facilitated greatly by Russia’s military and political emancipation. By having refused to take into account Russia’s interests, concerns and unique identity, its perpetual longing for justice and equality, the collective West made a colossal and unforgivable strategic mistake [Караганов 2017][15].

Russia carried out effective military reforms, rearmed its army with modern weapons, which often surpass foreign analogues, modernized its defense industry and became a self-sufficient center of power in global politics and the world economy as well as a very attractive partner for developing countries. Under the current circumstances, Moscow can offer strategic depth to China and guarantee military strategic stability to interested countries and regions. It also seriously restricts Western states’ possibilities to break the rules [Entin, Entina 2016d][16].


Agenda for the Next Stage of Decolonization

However, despite their success, developing countries, including the most advanced ones, remain dependent on (1) Western markets, where most of their exports go; (2) Western technologies needed for catching up and moving ahead, including modernization of the government, education and healthcare systems, and green-economy methods in industry and agriculture; and (3) Western investments and loans―the world financial system is fully controlled by the United States, the EU, Great Britain, and Japan. Finally, in order to turn from an object of politics into the subject, the developing world needs to have its own armed forces matching those of the West. Otherwise, it will not be able to protect itself from tragedies like those in Serbia, Libya, Iraq, Syria, Afghanistan, and other countries.

In order to complete decolonization and embark on a path of global peace free from diktat, hegemony and violence, developing countries will have to address all of the above tasks. While only a few years ago they seemed unsolvable, now it is no longer something unattainable but a matter of practical politics.

It is not the U.S., the EU or its member states but developing countries that demand an end to protectionism and other unilateral measures, call for opening up markets, building a free economy, reducing administrative barriers, and stopping total subsidizing of domestic manufacturers [Михеев, Луконин, Игнатьев 2017: 23-32][17]. In fact, the EU countries and the U.S. have many more WTO waivers than all the other countries that joined the organization on their terms. If the EU and Japan did not fence off their agricultural and food markets, they would long have been flooded with products from developing countries, because these countries make a much bigger assortment of better, tastier, and cheaper foods [Анализ 2015][18].

The same is true for international development aid and technical assistance. It is common knowledge that what the West offers is nothing more than sheer fraud and cheating. Over the past decade China has done more for developing countries than the entire Western world since the start of its assistance programs. The U.S., the EU and its member countries provide technical assistance and financing on condition that the recipient states would open up their markets, curb emigration, and comply with some other requirements [EU’s 2019][19]. As a result, Western firms crush competing local manufacturers and get incomparably more from those countries than they give them [Ferghane 2015; Rutaagi 2017; Vertueuses 2017][20].

So, democratization of international economic relations is overdue and inevitable. The developed world will not be able to block it either through bilateral agreements whereby it can simply pressure the other side into accepting unbeneficial terms, or through multilateral arrangements similar to trans-oceanic partnerships which substitute for the WTO and which have been rejected even by the United States.

The technological monopoly of the U.S. and Western Europe is coming to an end even though they are trying to delay it, particularly by imposing upon the rest of the world an intellectual property protection regime that has been servicing their own interests since the second half of the 19th century, it is morally obsolete and runs counter to the general principles of the planet’s development as an integral whole.

Preserving it amid information openness and globalization is an increasingly challenging task. Developing countries condition their agreement to host delocalized production facilities on the transfer of technology, largely copying China’s insistency and stubbornness. Lucrative Western businesses and advanced technology centers are purchased or otherwise acquired by developing countries’ private companies. The Western world’s former periphery supplies more and more engineers and scientists. Developing countries are undertaking ambitious space, energy and other groundbreaking projects [Dahlman 2007; Yeo 2017; Rain 2017][21].

Russia can greatly contribute to technological emancipation of developing countries. Large investments made by Moscow in the military-industrial complex and applied science over the past several years have paid off “unexpectedly” well. Russia has thousands of cutting-edge technologies and solutions which, if commercialized jointly with China, India, Indonesia, Vietnam, the Philippines, and dozens of other countries, can make an economic breakthrough in building an entirely new type of nuclear power plants [Никифоров 2017а; Foy 2017][22], utilizing 3D printing technology, making universal generic drugs and other new-generation medicines, and providing people with clean water [Никифоров 2017б][23].

Things have changed in military-technical terms too. Pressured by the U.S., Germany, France, Great Britain, and their allies, developing countries are ready to spend enormous amounts of money to purchase new weapons, as was vividly illustrated by the deal U.S. President Donald Trump struck with Saudi Arabia. New air defense systems, fifth generation combat aircrafts, helicopter gunships, submarines, and many other armaments designed and made jointly [Оружие 2018][24] by Russia and China, Russia and India, Russia and Israel will soon appear on the arms market [[Ходаренко 2017; Строкань 2017; Indo-Russian 2017][25].

Financial emancipation is the most difficult task. The Bretton Woods system still keeps all developing countries and rapidly growing economies―China and Russia are not an exception―in a subordinate position. The U.S., Japan, Great Britain, and the EU can pump trillions of fiat euros, dollars, pounds, and yens into international trade, thus making the entire international financial system their hostage, and creating a colossal bubble that is bound to burst one day, causing disastrous consequences for the global economy. Whether this will happen in a distant or near future is anyone’s guess [Mauldin 2017][26].

A situation where the whole world will be put at risk and doomed to go through another unescapable global financial and economic crisis is unacceptable, unnatural, extremely dangerous, and requires decisive preventive measures in order to ward off the worst. Financial voluntarism and lawlessness must be put under effective international control. Otherwise, the developing world will have to create a different system, supplementary or alternative to Bretton Woods.  Having seen no initiative on the part of the collective West, China, BRICS, the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, and the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU) have already started doing it. So far, only the first palliative interim steps have been taken [Fleming-Williams 2015; Lewis 2016; Prates, Peruffo 2016; Blanton, Kegley 2016][27].


Trends Impeding Further Decolonization

Western elites view further decolonization and its expansion as an existential challenge and a collapse of foundations [Энтин, Энтина 2017в][28], something extremely negative and undesirable which must be resisted most fiercely. This is understandable from the human point of view.

But this is utterly wrong from the point of view of common interests and historical perspectives. This position is unfeasible and refutes all of the collective West’s loud pledges of commitment to the ideals of justice, equality, and humanism. It also challenges all of its claims on moral or any other leadership.

The hitherto leading economies have much to lose in competition with the emerging economies, which makes it hard to separate factors that objectively impede full and consistent decolonization from deliberate counter-efforts against it. Unfortunately, such countertrends abound.

First, the rapidly rising economies, which aspired to succeed and become free, are going through a period of total political destabilization [Энтин, Энтина 2015а; 2015б; 2016в; 2017а; 2017б; Entin, Entina 2016a][29]. There is practically nothing left of the previous political regimes in Brazil and Venezuela. Their economies are in tatters. The entire Greater Middle East has been plunged into chaos and uncertainty. Turkey has become an embodiment of trouble. Ukraine is a vivid example of disastrous consequences that afflict a country which tries to achieve alien goals at all costs. Libya and Syria have been almost completely devastated. Steps have been taken to destabilize the political situation in Russia and China, but their governments are prepared to counter emerging threats.

Second, the U.S. Federal Reserve System and fiscal regulators in the EU and its member states have been trying since the middle of 2013 to redirect financial flows back to the developed world. Using mass media controlled by the collective West, they have been actively persuading investors and other financial market players that it is no longer beneficial to invest in growth-leading economies because they hold no promise any more, they are in decline and risks are staggering. The developing world is bad and rudimentary, while the West is a haven of stability (especially with Brexit [Байков, Дымова 2017: 37-46; Худолей, Ерёмина 2017: 28-36]). It has order, perfect infrastructure, security, flawless guarantees, etc. [Энтин, Энтина 2015а; 2015б][30].

However, every sober-minded entrepreneur understands that incomes, profits and profitability rates are much higher, probably by an order of magnitude, in the emerging markets than in the former colonial powers and countries that live at the expense of others like the United States [Wheatley 2018].

Third, the information war unleashed by the collective West has gone beyond all reasonable limits. In the past, the profession of a journalist earned respect and esteem for independent judgments and lack of political bias. In the past, it was never used so shamelessly to service government or corporate interests which in many cases have nothing to do with the interests of society. Nowadays, this profession has lost its luster and turned into its opposite, dominated completely by the need to discredit the opponent in the most convincing and credible manner. As for objective reality, it is left entirely to dilettantes and truth seekers [Энтин, Энтина 2015а; 2015б; Entin, Entina 2016a][31].

Fourth, a long time ago politicians knew that one must not sow dragon’s teeth or feed radicals, extremists and terrorists and incite them against countries, movements and entities you do not like today. This is exactly what the United States did when it sponsored the Taliban and Al-Qaeda and let jihadism out into the international arena, or when it contributed to the emergence of the Islamic State. Nowadays supporting “their” terrorists has become a daily practice for Western countries and their allies [Chomsky 2001; Global 2018; L’aide 2015; Ryckmans 2016; Anielewicz 2015][32].

Fifth, authoritative scholar Samuel Huntington, whose opinion is worth listening to, warned about an inevitable conflict of civilizations and cautioned against steps that could exacerbate or expand it in the future or widen the gap between them. Peace is more important than phobias and absurd claims on omniscience and universalism. But mankind has stepped into a minefield when it started to erase the difference between sexes, between traditional and non-traditional families (the blasphemous registration of three males as a lawful family in Colombia became an apotheosis of absurdity), and between sects and great religions that were a source of basic knowledge about people, society and the world around us [Международно-правовая 2017: 190].

Sixth, after the end of the Cold War there was a momentary illusion that the collective West could live, prosper and advance its interests without an arms race. Unfortunately, this positive trend is also wearing off. The U.S. once again leads the way in destabilizing the military-technological situation in the world. But the EU is also about to give up its habitual image of civilian power and a model of positive regulatory and government development for others to use and may turn into a threat to the independent development of other nations [Данилов 2017][33].

Seventh, the worst thing the West has invented is the policy of containment vis-a-vis Russia, China, and Iran or anyone else who is antagonized by the U.S., NATO, the EU or their member states or against whom Washington is ready to summon others under its banner [Билль 2017; Бордачёв 2017б; Лукьянов 2017]. But what for? In order to subordinate, or crush, or reign over? It is silly and senseless. It is obvious that Russia is a great and inalienable part of the European community, European history, culture, and traditions, the European economy and future. China allows the whole world to enjoy consumption as a way of life to a greater extent than ordinary people would otherwise afford. Iran and all others have only one demand: that they be treated fairly and respectfully, not the way cowboys or burghers do it.

This list could go on and on, but let us stop here, as it is already clear that there are numerous challenges and countertrends. It would be much more important to understand how to deal with them.


Countering Global and Other Manmade Challenges, Possible Scenarios of Further Decolonization

Political stability is a top priority. It is vital for overcoming the economic crisis and its consequences, restoring a favorable business climate, and implementing ambitious investment, infrastructure or any other economic projects, such as the EAEU or the Silk Road Economic Belt. China and Russia will be willing to facilitate these efforts separately or together, in a unilateral, bilateral or multilateral format by curbing internal or external attempts to destabilize certain countries and regions [Караганов 2017].

Another important task is to create a favorable business climate at home as well as in transit and partner countries and countries that provide their markets. This will require political will and the ability to make compromises and do concrete work. Work is imperative. In this respect, the EU has, or had, a lot to learn from, particularly the skill of prioritizing common, rather than one’s selfish, interests, an experience that dates back to the days of Jean Monnet [Entin, Entina 2016b][34].

The biggest harm to international cooperation is caused by information warfare and mud-slinging practices. These must be stopped in the first place, because they do not allow politicians and business people to act reasonably and rationally. They make all of us live in a world turned upside down. If the information war is stopped, all other urgent problems will be much easier to solve too [Энтин, Энтина 2017в; 2016г; 2016д; 2016е][35].

The next necessary step could be drafting a unifying agenda [20]. We could unite against terrorism, corruption, organized crime, drug trafficking, and hateful, radical and extremist movements and ideologies. As long as we are disunited, our enemies will continue to dictate their conditions to the world. Condoning this further would mean disrespecting oneself, ruining one’s own future, and plundering the planet where our children and grandchildren will have to live. Re-evaluating the policy of international assistance to development and eradication of poverty; creating global funds to finance new technologies, spread knowledge and support innovations through loans and subsidies; and implementing inclusive transregional projects―all this could make up such a positive agenda.

A comprehensive Eurasian partnership should become its focal point [Караганов 2017; К Великому 2016; Энтин, Энтина 2016а; 2016б; Entin, Entina 2016e; 2016f]. Its purpose is to create a common global or transregional cooperation space; curb the temptation to dictate conditions or subordinate others; ensure the stability described above; move forward along the road of economic development, prosperity, and social and interstate equality, acting together; and reaffirm, this time in real life not on paper, our commitment to the great principles enshrined in the UN Charter: sovereign equality of states, non-interference in internal affairs, non-use of force or threat of force, compliance with international agreements, and adherence to international cooperation.

The full original version of articles in Russian and English, previously published in the journals «Rivista di studi politici internazionali» and «Полис».

© Mark ENTIN, MGIMO&BFU professor,

Ekaterina ENTINA, NRU HSE ad-professor,
RAS Institute of Europe senior research fellow,

Ekaterina TORKUNOVA, MGIMO ad-professor

[1] Theses scholars consider their main task to explain the causes and effects of the phenomenon, dating it properly and placing it into the general historical context along with all others.

[2] The term ‘Third World’ is no longer considered relevant by modern historians and political scientists who believe it made sense only during the Cold War.

[3] Although the First International Decade for the Eradication of Colonialism proclaimed by the UN in 1990, the Second one, the end of which coincided with the 15th anniversary of the Declaration on the Granting of Independence to Colonial Countries and Peoples, and the Third one which is still in progress and will continue up to 2020 are based entirely on the concept of formal independence [“UN. Global Issues: Decolonization.” UN website. Rus. ed.].

[4] Even though almost all authors writing about decolonization habitually state that it is over and former colonies have become international actors in their own right and the object of rivalry among superpowers. Here is a typical example: “The liberation of peoples in Tropical Africa from colonial dependence marked the final phase of decolonization … The emergence of about a hundred new states in what used to be colonial periphery is a fact of enormous historical significance. These states have become an important factor in global politics.”

[5] As David Gibbs writes, “American business … stood to gain the most from free trade” and the U.S. “wished to end colonialism and to open the underdeveloped regions to American exporters and investors”.

[6] In Soviet times, their experience was conceptually evaluated from a historical perspective.

[7] During the post-Soviet period it was viewed as a phenomenon of the past.

[8] Resolution 1803 (XVII) of the UN General Assembly of December14, 1962 “Permanent Sovereignty over Natural Resources”. Rus. ed.

[9] Although the effects of those events and views can still be seen in contemporary competition mechanisms used on the global energy market as developing countries tighten government control over energy resources.

[10] In contemporary analytics, the fact that the West’s constantly evolving economic strategy is based on political imperatives is a given so obvious that it needs no proof. There is abundant evidence. Let us cite just one quote from the numerous publications of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace: “Ensuring energy security for the countries that import fossil fuel, which are also the global economic leaders, is one of the major factors that contributes to the impressive development of the green economy and its alternative energy segment”.

[11] This is a fact of life regardless of how cautiously, alarmingly or negatively it is assessed by Western economists and political scientists, including speculation about China as the cause of a future global financial and economic crisis.

[12] According to the most authoritative forecasts, this trend will last well into the future.

[13] According to official statistics kept by international financial organizations, China accounted for 40% of the global economic growth in 2016.

[14] They can serve as the framework for a transregional and global world order that will adhere, formally and practically, to the principles laid down in the UN Charter. Andyet, they, too, will have to look for responses to a common challenge faced by all international public organizations―a dramatic decline in their efficiency.

[15] As Sergei Karaganov, one of the leading Russian experts, says, “… a key factor in persuading the biggest part of the Russian elite to turn away from Europe was the greedy and reckless neo-Weimar policy that propelled Western alliances farther east into the territories, which Russia considers vitally important for its security and for which the Russian Empire and the Soviet Union sacrificed millions of lives. This policy upset plans to create a sustainable system of European security, a common European home, or a Union of Europe.”

[16] By strongly demanding that they strictly observe the UN Charter’s fundamental principles concerning non-interference in other countries’ internal affairs, sovereign equality of states, and non-use of force or threat of force.

[17] At least that is how they are trying to position themselves.

[18] According to surveys conducted by the Eurasian Economic Commission.

[19] As EU officials admit themselves.

[20] “Expropriation of local production facilities, the spread of corruption, and the plundering of natural resources”― this is how the actual aftermath of the developed world’s policy in developing countries is described by its opponents [Vertueuses 2017].

[21] Pioneered often by China, India, and South Korea.

[22] In which Russia is a recognized world leader.

[23] Use of cutting-edge nuclear technologies developed by Rosatom companies.

[24] Recently it was the subject of fierce debates among Russian experts.

[25] To meet domestic needs and offer them to third countries.

[26] This issue raises serious concern among American experts who monitor the U.S. investment attractiveness and investment in American assets.

[27] Along with efforts to revamp and democratize it.

[28] Coupled with numerous internal crises in the EU, the U.S., and Japan as a collapse of the liberal world order.

[29] This and other trends considered below are studied as a systemic phenomenon for the first time. But we explored them separately in a series of publications, including fundamental ones.

[30] We witnessed all the nuances of this campaign while heading the Russian Embassy in Luxembourg in 2012-2016 and tried to describe them as accurately as possible in our two-volume monograph.

[31] If it were not a long-established term, it would be proper to call information war disinformation war, because it harms the international community and causes more tension in international relations than anything else, forcing practical politics and the public opinion into a vicious circle which is increasingly hard to break.

[32] The most respectable Western newspapers, television channels and politicians talk, without a hint of shame, about the use of terrorist organizations in different parts of the world as a foreign-policy instrument.

[33] Albeit in a medium-term or distant future.

[34] An excellent example is the 2016 annual message from the President of the European Commission and its supporting documents.

[35] In Russia’s relations with the West in general and primarily with the EU.