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Ideas

Nothing More Dangerous Than A Clash Of Two Superpowers In Decline

The war in Ukraine is hastening the fall of major world powers Russia and the United States. There can only be one true victor from their protracted battle — China — and far too many risks for the rest of us.

A Russian soldier in Moscow in 1999.

A Russian soldier attends a May Day parade rehearsal on Moscow's Red Square in 1999.

Juan Corradi*

-Analysis-

BUENOS AIRES — Worse than the Thucydides trap — a tendency towards war when a rising power threatens to displace an established one — is the struggle between two declining powers. In 1958, the sociologist C. Wright Mills published a book with a title relevant to our time, The Causes of World War Three. Four years later, the United States faced the Cuban missile crisis, which took the world to the brink of a nuclear war. Luckily, the leaders of both superpowers knew how to step back when a single miscalculation might have set the planet on fire.

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Mills elaborated in the book his controversial theory of the power elites. In both the U.S. and the Soviet Union, he stated, the system's three great pillars — military, industrial and political — merged at the top to form a narrow, cohesive group that wielded most of the power. That was his power elite. In the United States, the power elite manipulated a two-party, liberal democratic system, while in the Soviet Union, it ran a totalitarian state through a single party and top-down social and economic management.

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FOCUS: Russia-Ukraine War

"Welcome To Our Hell..." Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba Speaks

In a rare in-depth interview, Ukraine's top diplomat didn't hold back as he discussed NATO, E.U. candidacy, and the future of the war with Russia. He also reserves a special 'thank you' for Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi.

Dmytro Kuleba, Foreign Minister of Ukraine attends the summit of foreign ministers of the G7 group of leading democratic economic powers.

Oleg Bazar

KYIV — This is the first major interview Ukrainian Minister of Foreign Affairs Dmytro Kuleba has given. He spoke to the Ukrainian publication Livy Bereg about NATO, international assistance and confrontation with Russia — on the frontline and in the offices of the European Parliament.

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At 41, Kuleba is the youngest ever foreign minister of Ukraine. He is the former head of the Commission for Coordination of Euro-Atlantic Integration and initiated Ukraine's accession to the European Green Deal. The young but influential pro-European politician is now playing a complicated political game in order to attract as many foreign partners as possible to support Ukraine not only in the war, but also when the war ends.

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Central to the tragic absurdity of this war is the question of language. Vladimir Putin has repeated that protecting ethnic Russians and the Russian-speaking populations of Ukraine was a driving motivation for his invasion.

Yet one month on, a quick look at the map shows that many of the worst-hit cities are those where Russian is the predominant language: Kharkiv, Odesa, Kherson.

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