Changing global mood and foreign policy

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Why Dhaka refrained from siding with either bloc exchanging words and ammunition over the war between Ukraine and Russia and the caution of this decision will be analyzed by foreign policy experts in the years to come. However, the current situation may lead to a new world order.

Russia and its allies and satellites as well as the US-led NATO and countries in its spheres of influence have split into two camps, but the crisis has not been reminiscent of a war-era polarization. Cold War which has greatly divided the world.

Now countries like Bangladesh have found it less relevant to become a party to Russian action or its vocal opposition. Thus, Dhaka had opted for the third option by abstaining from voting for the United Nations General Assembly resolution of March 2, 2022 deploring the invasion of Ukraine by Russia.

Countries outside the realm of hostilities suffer from political dilemmas, as evidenced by debates on social media about great power policies and rivalries. Policy makers have yet to act, neutrality notwithstanding.

This fluid situation has reinforced an old imperative for Bangladesh to prepare and pursue a country-specific foreign policy, setting aside Kautilyan kutniti (diplomacy) of befriending “the enemy of my enemy”.

The war that has garnered enormous media attention has failed to draw the majority of the world’s population into the fold of blind support or opposition to the belligerents despite its painful impacts on global commodity markets. basic and financial. It’s different from the Vietnam war against the Americans or the Afghan war against the Soviets.

The world has been hostile to the war in Yemen and the civil wars in Syria and Libya. People would obviously equate one injustice, say, in Palestine by the Israelis to another here, pointing to the double standards of world powers.

However, there are “unknowns” in the Russia-Ukraine encounter. We do not know in detail why Russian President Vladimir Putin launched the special military operation breaking the sovereignty of Ukraine recognized during the dismemberment of the Soviet Union in 1991. US President Joe Biden’s policy on this crisis and the target of anti-Russian rhetoric are not yet clear either.

Even more unknown to the world is the consequence of Western sanctions on Russia, its oligarchs and its institutions. Mr. Putin may have assumed that profiteering Western corporations would get tired of their own losses at some point! America and its allies might have wanted to cripple Putin’s Russia once and for all!

However, the inability of the United Nations to properly serve weaker member states has left them disillusioned with the dominance of the Big Five in the Security Council.

The ramifications of this war would most likely cause every nation to turn inward to redefine and nurture relations with any power. The revival of 19th and 20th century nationalism is unlikely in an age of immigration and economic interdependence, but states can undergo massive social and political change.

The war in Ukraine may also prompt Asian nations to affirm their “century of Asians”. In this context, Bangladesh can market its policy of moderation which suits most peace-promoting countries.

China has already declared that it stands on the right side of history in the face of the Ukraine crisis. Nuclear rivals India and Pakistan have maintained a strikingly similar policy line on the West-Russia standoff.

The crisis began with Ukrainian leader Volodymyr Zelensky’s aspiration to join the NATO military alliance. Ukraine wants to become a member of the European Union bloc and European leaders also sympathize with Ukrainians because of their race.

The countries that sided with or remained silent in the face of the Russian adventure – the West’s obvious enemies – can be counted on the fingers of one hand. Moreover, the American allies who have been blacklisted by Mr. Putin are not numerous.

This indicates that most countries have virtually moved away from the crisis and that this development will shape the domestic and foreign policies of sovereign countries.

Therefore, it is time for Bangladesh to read the changing global mood and upcoming trends to prepare policy packages aimed at maximizing the interests of future generations.

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