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Strategic Partnerships in Twenty-Second Century Global Politics: From Weathering Storms to the Politics of Anticipation

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The Palgrave Handbook of Global Politics in the 22nd Century

Abstract

Written in a ‘futur antérieur’ style, this academicized science-fiction and alternate history contribution in ‘fictional IR’ ponders on the evolution of the international system in the 2020s–2120s and with it the paradigmatic change in the kind of international actors, the structure of international politics as well as the idea of cooperation and conflict that underlies international interactions. It does so with a particular focus on the notion of ‘strategic partnerships’ that emerged in the 2000s, substantially proliferated in the 2020s, experienced its clinical death in the mid-2030s, with the resurrection and renaissance of the idea ensuing in the second half of the twenty-first century. Through fictional-factual narrative, the chapter explores and explains how, being initially seen as a substitute of alliances and ad hoc tool for the joint management of critical security or economic issues, strategic partnerships rose to the underlying fabric of international (and interfacial) interactions from the 2050s onwards.

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Notes

  1. 1.

    The present authors are representatives of the first generation of ‘augments’—a daring experiment of Estonian idea and tech-entrepreneurs from the year 2037 who sought to enable a smooth transition of humankind from physical to quantum ontology. On the origins of unified physical and social ontologies and the ‘quantum man’, see: Wendt (2015).

  2. 2.

    See also Neveragainman’s ⟨Ψ 2090⟩ comprehensive study that explores in all the painful detail how this axiom became a theorem of our days.

  3. 3.

    The early twenty-first-century simulations of a global nuclear war, concurrently conducted by the Princeton Science and Global Security (SGS) and the MIT's International Life Sciences Institute (ILSI), considered only the US and Russian nuclear arsenals which in the 2020s made up 90% of the world's nine nuclear powers’ arsenal—and even then came to conclusion that a nuclear war between the US and Russia would plunge the Earth into a 10-year-long nuclear winter, with over 60% of the world's population (i.e. ca. 5 billion people) being thereby exterminated; whereby, over 90 million casualties were predicted to accrue within the first few hours of the war (Princeton SGS 2019).

  4. 4.

    It is emblematic that the rebirth of liberal democratic idea(l)s occurred where these were most severely challenged in the early decades of the twenty-first century—in Central and Eastern Europe. As a narrative entrepreneur and a role model, O. Tokarczuk led Poland’s resistance movement aiming to cancel the ‘Polexit’ (yet another—Polish—withdrawal from the EU) and reinstate liberal democratic rule. The ideas soon found their resonance in other CEECs where ‘Czech-out’, ‘Donegary’, ‘Outstria’ were looming.

  5. 5.

    Maryna Viazovska—Laureate of the 2018 New Horizons in Mathematics Prize awarded by the Mathematics Breakthrough Prize Board (Klarreich 2019) and the recipient of the highest-honour 2022 Fields Medal (Lin and Klarreich 2022).

  6. 6.

    Already during the early phase of the Russian-Ukrainian war in 2022, Elon Musk's SpaceX engagement marked the new era of the state-society and state-business nexuses in global politics where global corporations—as well as global humans—have a responsibility and role to play in times of peace and war, too. So, in an answer to Ukraine government's plea for help, SpaceX swiftly positioned some 50 satellites of its Starlink satellite communications system for Ukraine's use, which had immense consequences for the success of the country's defensive operations on the ground, including for strategic communications and precision strikes with drones (Miller et al. 2022).

  7. 7.

    The preceding Anthropocene era, with its environmental instability, inequality, and entangled threats (from conventional to chemical, biological and nuclear), wielded significant ramifications for the idea and state of security since the 1950s, so that in the early 2020s, there were already calls for new ways of thinking about collective survival (Lövbrand and Mobjörk 2021). The post-Anthropocene epoch, which is believed to have started in the early 2050s, connotes a post-human security environment where planetary security is computed, conditioned and constructed by AI and quantum technologies of sorts.

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Tyushka, A., Czechowska, L. (2023). Strategic Partnerships in Twenty-Second Century Global Politics: From Weathering Storms to the Politics of Anticipation. In: Horn, L., Mert, A., Müller, F. (eds) The Palgrave Handbook of Global Politics in the 22nd Century. Palgrave Macmillan, Cham. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-031-13722-8_6

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