Géopolitique

Cette page regroupe l'ensemble des publications de Futuribles sur cette thématique (Vigie, revue, bibliographie, études, etc.)

Tribune européenne

Géopolitique

The European Union and its Three Major Players

The various crises the European Union has undergone in recent years (economic, institutional, monetary etc.) and the way the member states have reacted to them at the national and the community level, have reconfigured the balance between the various countries. Among these countries, three “major players” are worthy of particular attention on account of their demographic, economic and diplomatic impact within this regional ensemble. These are the UK, Germany and France.

Jean-François Drevet describes the positioning of these three countries within the Union and their mid- to long-term perspectives. Confronted with a United Kingdom that feels vindicated in its minimalist European position, somewhere between “wait-and-see” and Euroscepticism, and continues in the footsteps of the American elder brother, the Franco-German Couple, its centre of gravity now shifted towards Berlin, is finding it hard to mount the effort for regional integration that would enable the Union to regain both economic and diplomatic momentum. A re-balancing would be salutary, but is France able to transcend its inter-governmental vision of the European edifice and make the innovations required to strengthen the Union that are probably the only alternative to decline?

Editorial

Géopolitique

Le pari européen

Alors que la plupart des pays européens s’enlisent dans la crise, les atermoiements qu’a suscités la ratification du Traité sur la stabilité, la coordination et la gouvernance me semblent d’un autre âge. En août 2011, Jacques Delors nous alertait déjà : « Ouvrons les yeux, s’exclamait-il, l’euro et l’Europe sont au bord du gouffre. Et pour ne pas tomber, le choix me paraît simple : soit les États membres acceptent la coopération économique renforcée […], soit ils transfèrent ...

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Revue

Géopolitique

The Future of Global Leadership: On Zbigniew Brzezinski’s “Strategic Vision”

The various crises the USA has experienced in recent decades (the attacks of 11 September 2001, the economic and financial crisis of 2007 etc.), against a background of deadlock on such major international questions as the fight against climate change and the emergence of new powers in Asia, have called into question the USA’s status as a global superpower. If this decline on the part of the USA in the management of international affairs continues and no other –national or regional– power takes over the reins, the future of the world looks very gloomy.

This is Zbigniew Brzezinski’s diagnosis in his latest study, in which he details the elements that have brought this situation about (the handicaps affecting the USA and contributing to its decline), maps out the perspectives that might ensue in the years to 2025 and suggests, by way of a “strategic vision” (mainly intended to guide American policy), the means for avoiding the chaos that might arise out of a leaderless world.

Bernard Cazes has read this book for Futuribles. He reviews its main ideas here and traces the general outlines of this new “strategic vision”.

Revue

Géopolitique

Qatar between Dynamism and Ambition: Socio-economic Prospects to 2030

Though it is a very small country in the Arab peninsula (just over half the size of Wales), the Emirate of Qatar nonetheless occupies an increasingly important economic and diplomatic position globally. Awareness of the country has grown in recent years with a Qatari presence developing –and being consolidated– in the sporting sector (football clubs, TV channels etc.), but most importantly Qatar is also one of the leading global producers of natural gas, behind Russia and Iran. It also ranks number one in terms of per capita GDP (at parity of purchasing power).

In this article, Perla Srour-Gandon lists the country’s main assets –particularly its energy assets– and also outlines the Qatari authorities’ strategy for maintaining this economic prosperity, even into a world without hydrocarbons. She specifies, among other things, the “2030 Vision” they have developed in the educational, socio-economic and environmental fields, as well as in the areas of sport, tourism and culture, to guarantee a sustainable future for Qataris. It is as yet unknown whether this economic diversification strategy will bear fruit, but it is evidence of a degree of clear-sightedness on the part of the emirate, which is aware that its income stream from gas will not last forever and is using its current position of strength to make longer-term investments.

Tribune européenne

Géopolitique

The North/South Divide in Europe

The economic crisis that has affected Europe for almost five years has also rekindled the dissensions within the European Union and demonstrated the difficulties experienced in organizing effective solidarity among all the member states. Though Germany is calling for increased European integration, this is far from unanimously agreed by all its partners. Yet, as Jean-François Drevet shows here, the disparities in economic development between the countries of Europe are a long-standing feature of the EU and, despite the mechanisms put in place during its construction and expansion, they have not been reduced in any lasting way; the countries of the South (Italy, Greece, Spain and Portugal) have still not managed to catch up economically with those of the North (Germany, France, Benelux etc.). Solidarity has a price, admittedly, but if it were implemented at community level, it might also turn out to be more effective than national policies in resolving current economic problems, as this column shows; it might, in the longer term, ensure that the South catches up economically with the North. For that, however, we would need a community budget truly worthy of the name, capable of sustaining a European cohesion policy on a wholly new scale...

Bonnes feuilles

Géopolitique - Institutions

United States: The Influence of the Fundamentalists

On 6 November 2012, Americans will go to the polls to elect their next president, who will take over as leader of the United States in January 2013. As usual, the contest will essentially be between the candidates of the two major parties, the incumbent Democratic president Barack Obama and the Republican Mitt Romney. However, recent years have also seen the emergence of a movement (named “party” although it is not a party), which has radicalized the Republican party to the extreme. It is a particularly populist force and Paul Ryan, Mitt Romney’s running mate, is very close to it. We are speaking of the “Tea Party”. Within that faction, religious fundamentalists rub shoulders with unemployed youth, and pensioners ruined by the economic crisis mingle with those who still hanker after an all-powerful America. All are advocates of a radical change of government, abolishing most of the public sector and replacing it with private enterprise.

Nicole Morgan has made a close study of this movement and its underlying ideology in her book Haine froide [Cold Hatred] which is hot off the press from éditions du Seuil of Paris. In that work, she provides the key to this “ideological machine” that has been built up over a half century, with its intellectuals, best-selling authors and Nobel prize-winners, its heretical alliances and powerful figures, who ultimately inhabit a different world from the other 99% of humanity. Although this ideology developed and established itself in the United States, its universal ambitions actually make it an essential subject of study so far as the future of all modern nation-states is concerned. As this extract from Nicole Morgan’s book shows, the ideology rests on simple postulates which it transforms, against a background of economic ultra-liberalism, into irrefutable truths. Like all hard ideologies, it is a vehicle for strong emotions welling up from deep within the collective unconscious, fear and hatred foremost among them. According to Morgan, hatred (a “cold” hatred, for the moment) underlies this ideology, figures lend it a benign veneer, and it is characterized by ignorance. Hence an attitude of vigilance is appropriate.

Bibliography

Géopolitique

Chinese and Indian Strategic Behavior

Cet ouvrage est le fruit d’une collaboration entre George J. Gilboy, le représentant en Chine d’une société australienne du sec­teur énergétique, et Eric Heginbo­tham, spécialiste des questions de sécurité en Asie orientale à la RAND Corporation. Les deux auteurs y présentent un travail d’analyse comparée portant sur les stratégies internationales de l’Inde et de la Chine, et en tirent les conséquences pour les intérêts américains. Il en ressort essentiellement que, contrairement à l’opinion ...

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Bibliography

Géopolitique - Ressources naturelles, énergie, environnement

Innovative Generation, Powering a Prosperous Asia

Le présent rapport fait suite au sommet annuel de l’Énergie Asie-Pacifique qui s’est tenu à Hanoi du 20 au 22 mars 2012. Organisée par le National Bureau of Asian Research, un organisme américain non partisan dédié aux études sur l’Asie, en partenariat avec l’Académie diplomatique du Viêt-Nam, cette édition a porté sur le thème « Ressources d’énergie innovantes : facteurs d’une Asie prospère ». Elle a rassemblé plus de 150 participants originaires de 17 pays, responsables politiques ...

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Tribune européenne

Géopolitique

The European Union and the Nordic Countries

The European Union has been greatly concerned in recent years with its Eastern and Southern peripheries, given the instability there has been in these regions (former Soviet republics, Balkans, Arab countries etc.). This does not mean, however that the Nordic countries —whether members of the Union (like Denmark, Sweden or Finland) or not (Iceland and Norway)— do not deserve our undivided attention, particularly in the current context of global warming.


As Jean-François Drevet reminds us here, the EU has officially written the “Nordic dimension” into its proceedings and devotes a specific policy to it, but the particular positioning of the Nordic countries toward the EU —characterized largely by Euroscepticism— must also be stressed. Moreover, these countries have established specific forms of cooperation (inter alia, the Nordic Council and Baltic co-operation) in the field of the free circulation of persons, environmental protection etc., and the exemplary nature of these should be highlighted. Lastly, in view of global warming, the Arctic space is now of heightened interest (new navigable routes, potentially available new resources etc.) and the EU cannot remain indifferent to it.

Note de veille

Économie, emploi - Géopolitique

Les investissements chinois en Europe

Publiée par le cabinet de conseil américain Rhodium Group, réalisée en partenariat avec la China International Capital Corporation (CICC), une banque d’investissement chinoise, et le Brunswick Group cabinet de conseil en communication stratégique, l’étude China Invests in Europe 1 analyse la structure et l’incidence des investissements chinois dans l’Union européenne (UE). « L’Europe est en train de connaître le début d’une flambée structurelle des investissements directs dans les économies avancées par les entreprises chinoises », constate ...

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Note de veille

Géopolitique

Relations OTAN-UE : quelles perspectives ?

Depuis l’échec de la Communauté européenne de défense, la plupart des pays européens se reposent largement sur l’OTAN (Organisation du traité de l’Atlantique Nord) pour prendre en charge les opérations des conflits internationaux dans lesquels ils s’engagent 1. Lors du conflit en Libye, l’OTAN s’est cependant mise en retrait, incitant ainsi l’UE (Union européenne) à mettre en place une politique de défense et de sécurité cohérente. Cette tendance a été confirmée lors du ...

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Analyse prospective

Géopolitique - Ressources naturelles, énergie, environnement

Les transactions internationales de terres

Les investissements directs étrangers dans les terres arables ont maintenant une base de données dédiée, The Land Matrix. En ligne depuis mars 2012, elle permet d’avoir une image plus complète du phénomène, souvent nommé land grabbing (accaparement des terres), par ses données sur l’usage prévu des terres, les investisseurs et leurs motivations, ou encore une mise à jour des données quantitatives spatiales et dynamiques. Cette note est construite en complément de l’article de Dominique Auverlot et Blandine ...

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Note de veille

Géopolitique

Perspectives d’intégration des Balkans occidentaux dans l’UE

L’Autriche est le huitième pays à avoir voté, le 4 juillet 2012, la ratification du Traité d’adhésion de la Croatie à l’Union européenne (UE). Ceci est l’aboutissement d’un processus commencé en juin 2010. Ces ratifications arrivent après que les Croates se sont prononcés, lors du référendum du 22 janvier 2012, en faveur de l’entrée du pays dans l’UE, à plus de 66 %. Cet accord marque un tournant pour la Croatie qui était encore ...

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Note de veille

Économie, emploi - Géopolitique

La zone du CCG face à la crise

Depuis 2003, les six monarchies du Conseil de Coopération du Golfe arabe (CCG) 1 ont été les premières bénéficiaires des prix record du pétrole. Cette montée leur a permis d’enregistrer des taux de croissance économique élevés. Mais, en 2012, la dégradation de l’économie mondiale devrait exercer des pressions à la baisse sur les cours du brut et ralentir la croissance de la zone CCG. Les atoutsLes réserves du sous-sol La zone du CCG couvre actuellement 40 % des ...

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Note de veille

Géopolitique

La Méditerranée et les BRICS

En Méditerranée, la pénétration commerciale des grandes puissances émergentes se confirme. C’est le résultat de stratégies globales où l’approche géopolitique se conjugue sans cesse avec une série de déterminants commerciaux. Cette dynamique est particulièrement éclairante dans la sphère agro-alimentaire.Bien que le concept soit régulièrement critiqué pour son manque de pertinence géopolitique, force est de constater que l’acronyme BRIC (Brésil, Russie, Inde, Chine), créé en 2003 par Jeffrey Sachs pour caractériser les économies dynamiques du début de ...

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Note de veille

Économie, emploi - Géopolitique

L’Australie : terre promise ?

Revenir d’Australie en ces temps de crise européenne est comme revenir d’un autre monde ! Un continent débordant d’énergie et d’activité, dont les ressources naturelles viennent à point satisfaire l’insatiable demande chinoise. Un continent immense largement désertique et vide : 22 millions d’habitants sur un territoire 30 fois plus grand que la France, et concentrés pour l’essentiel sur quelques villes côtières du sud : Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Adélaïde, Perth. C’est à Perth, capitale de l ...

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Bibliography

Géopolitique

Horizons stratégiques

Le rapport de prospective Horizons stratégiques, élaboré par la Délégation aux affaires stratégiques du ministère de la Défense, a pour vocation d’éclairer la préparation des programmes d’armement. Cette réflexion s’adosse à une analyse prospective de l’environnement stratégique international réalisée à partir des tendances globales d’évolution du contexte stratégique, des équilibres géopolitiques mondiaux, de la nature et de l’intensité des risques et des menaces, pour en identifier les conséquences sur le positionnement de la France ...

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Note de veille

Géopolitique

La Chine en Méditerranée, quoi de neuf ?

Si la Chine n’a pas d’ambition clairement régionale dans l’espace méditerranéen, sa présence ne cesse de s’y renforcer au gré des opportunités que lui offrent les révoltes arabes et les difficultés économiques de l’Union européenne. Deux pays, la Turquie et Israël, se tournent quant à eux résolument vers celle qu’ils considèrent comme un partenaire essentiel dans le nouvel ordre mondial qui semble se mettre en place. Ces avancées discrètes mais constantes méritent d’être ...

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Tribune européenne

Géopolitique

The European Union and Relations with its Major Eastern Neighbours

The European Union, which has gradually expanded its geographical space with the arrival of new members, now shares – or almost shares – a border in the east and the south with a certain number of countries that are likely to be troublesome in diplomatic terms. This is particularly the case, as Jean-François Drevet shows here, with three of its major eastern neighbours: Russia, Turkey and Iran. As argued in this column, the foreign policies of these three countries, which aspire to be regional powers, have the following features in common: aggressive behaviour towards their neighbours, an obsessive conception of their security and relatively vague political objectives. In a context like this, what position can the European Union adopt to reconcile their ambitions with its own pursuit of regional security respecting international law? Pacifism, pragmatism, mistrust and expansionism are of no help here in “squaring the circle”...

Forum

Géopolitique

Integrating Turkey into the European Union: a Necessity

A year and a half after the beginning of the “Arab Spring” and with the regional context in the Mediterranean in a very uncertain state (Syria, Egypt and the Arab-Israeli conflict etc.), the atypical profile of Turkey is regularly put forward either as a model or a possible point of leverage. Some observers are, in fact, arguing strongly for the European Union to review its position with regard to that country’s membership of the Union at this moment.

In this forum article, Pierre Chabal, who shares this position in favour Turkish EU entry, rehearses the arguments in its favour. He particularly stresses the change in geostrategic context (the Cold War has ended and east, central and south Asia are all advancing) – and also in economic environment (Turkey has made significant efforts to meet Community demands and represents, moreover, a strategic crossroads on the energy supply-route to Europe). He also emphasizes the degree to which Turkey is now an essential part of both Europe’s security architecture and regional stability, and he warns the Union against making the country wait too long for membership at a time when there are other prospective alliances on Turkey’s horizon and it is being actively courted by the countries of Asia, China foremost among them. In such a context, Turkish integration is, in his view, no longer an option but a necessity.

Revue

Géopolitique

Geopolitics of Wheat in the Mediterranean

Continuing the long series on Mediterranean issues that was begun, on his initiative, in this journal more than a year ago, Sébastien Abis turns here to the geopolitical dimension of a basic food resource – wheat – in the current Mediterranean context. His aim is to highlight the degree to which this cereal plays a crucial role in the geopolitical equation of the region, particularly through its social and economic impacts and the commercial dealings to which it gives rise.

Reminding us initially of the extent to which wheat is both a symbolic and a nutritionally indispensable product, he outlines the economic dynamics at work in North Africa and the Middle East in terms of the consumption, production and importation of this basic resource – particularly price increases and price volatility. Abis then shows the degree to which wheat has become a globalized, desirable product and how greatly the attention of the main producers (USA, EU, Black Sea countries) is focussed on the Mediterranean region, because of the high levels of consumption there. Lastly, after reminding us – particularly with reference to the Egyptian case – of the key role played by wheat in the social cohesion of the countries of the Mediterranean basin, Abis proposes three possible future scenarios, depending on the particular regional ambitions of the European Union: European withdrawal, leaving the countries of North Africa and the Middle East to find their supplies from the Black Sea countries; a fresh boost to the Euro-Mediterranean partnership, putting the EU at the heart of the region’s wheat supplies; or, lastly, a revision of the EU’s Neighbourhood Policy involving a partnership with the Black Sea countries to achieve optimum complementarity in terms of wheat production, though this poses the risk of friction with Russia.

Chapitre Géopolitique

Ce chapitre est extrait du Rapport Vigie 2016 de Futuribles International, qui propose un panorama structuré des connaissances et des incertitudes des experts que l'association a mobilisés pour explorer les évolutions des 15 à 35 prochaines années sur 11 thématiques.