How do we preach the blessings of racial and ethnic diversity to a world where, as Kaplan writes, ethnonationalism and tribalism are being embraced and people are willing to die to create nations where their own kind and their own culture are dominant if not exclusive?
When, in the 1950s, Nikita Khrushchev said, “We will bury you,” and, “Your children will live under communism,” Eisenhower’s America scoffed.
By 1980, however, the tide did indeed seem to be with the East.
America had suffered a decade of defeats. Southeast Asia had fallen. The ayatollah had seized power in Iran. Moscow had occupied Afghanistan. Cuban troops were in Ethiopia and Angola. Grenada and Nicaragua had fallen to the Soviet bloc. Eurocommunism was all the rage on the continent.
Just a decade later, the world turned upside-down.
The Berlin Wall fell. Eastern Europe was suddenly free. The Soviet Union disintegrated. China abandoned Maoism for state capitalism.
Now, 20 years on, the wheel has turned again — toward darkness.
No longer do we hear chatter about “The End of History” and triumph of democratic capitalism, of America imposing her “global hegemony” or leading mankind into “a second American century.”
The hubris is gone, and triumphalism has given way to anxiety, apprehension, alarm.
In an essay, “The Return of Toxic Nationalism,” Robert Kaplan, a geopolitical analyst for Stratfor, writes that Western elites are even yet failing to see the larger, darker picture of our evolving world.
These elites identify with the like-minded in other lands and “prefer not to see the regressive and exclusivist forces … that are mightily reshaping the future.”