The world in 2022, i.e. the list of predictable disasters

The world in 2022, i.e. the list of predictable disasters
The world in 2022, i.e. the list of predictable disasters
  • In 2022, the main challenges facing the world will be a pandemic and the threat of an economic crisis in the US and China.
  • New wars may break out, but this is unlikely to happen. It is about Taiwan and Ukraine
  • As always, in the European Union it will be… boring. And that is really the measure of the EU’s success
  • You can read more similar stories on the main website of Onet

COVID-19: It’ll be okay. Or tragically

In 2021, the world’s most advanced countries implemented a vaccination program. Most of the societies of highly developed countries are already after the second, and in some countries also after the third, resembling dose of the vaccine. In parallel, in the so-called The Third World immunization program is clearly failing. In Africa, for example, only 9% are fully vaccinated. population, and in some countries this percentage fluctuates around 1-2 percent. The above means that the risk of the emergence of new, more dangerous than previously existing variants of the coronavirus is increasing. The fact that a vaccine, for example against HIV, has not yet been developed indicates that a catastrophic scenario in which a vaccine-resistant strain of the virus emerges is unfortunately possible. A more likely scenario, however, is that the new variants may be more contagious, but at the same time less threatening.

The year of the triumph of science. And ignorance

The COVID-19 vaccines are an incredible scientific success (all of them developed in a very short time), and the fact that almost 8 billion of them have already been administered proves only that the anti-vaccine concerns about their safety have turned out to be completely unfounded. Unfortunately, this is not understood by anti-vaccines, which proves that 2021 was not only the year of the triumph of science, but also the victory of ignorance.

One of the countries most affected by the pandemic is Russia, where, according to official data, more than 1,000 people die each day. people. The problem is that statisticians point to the fact that the Kremlin is manipulating the data and the real death toll is much higher. Tragic statistics result from the fact that the Russians do not want to vaccinate, which is due to the fact that, not trusting their own media, they learn from the Internet, which is full of reprints of pseudoscientific texts about the alleged harmfulness of vaccines. The paradox is that texts are being reprinted that, by all appearances, are part of the Russian fake news campaign that was supposed to hit the West. 2021 is, in other words, the year it turned out that disinformation could backfire.

A coronavirus crisis in the economy

The coronavirus pandemic has disrupted the global economy. It turned out that in a globalized world, car production in Germany may be dependent on the bankruptcy of one semiconductor factory in the Far East. The slowdown in the economy at the beginning of the pandemic, followed by its rapid recovery, meant that some components were suddenly missing and the situation is slowly improving, at the same time the above-mentioned shortages result in inflation, which is a problem not for Poland, but for the whole world.

Rising inflation, if not brought under control, may necessitate a rise in US interest rates. This, however, comes with serious risks. The rates of return on stock market investments in the United States today are higher than they were before the Great Depression of 1929 and the stock market crash of 2007 and 2008. Increase in interest rates can even cause a recession in the worst case scenario. As you know, the Qatar of the American economy means the flu of the world economy. However, not only the situation on the American market is worrying. There are also many indications that the growing real estate bubble in China may burst and, as a result, lead to a crisis in the Chinese economy.

War for Taiwan? There is NATO Pacific

In 2021, tensions grew around Taiwan, and in the middle of the year it was even speculated whether China would decide to take the island by force. The above would mean the outbreak of the Sino-Taiwanese war, and probably the Sino-American war as well. Its probability does not seem high unless Beijing decides that Washington will not defend Taipei and the calculation turns out to be wrong. The probability of a war is low, however, mainly because, like the USA and the USSR, they were aware of the so-called “MAD” (Mutually Assured Destruction) in the event of an exchange of nuclear blows, so China and the US, without even resorting to the use of nuclear weapons, can be sure that even in the event of a conventional war, they can destroy each other’s economies.

This does not change the fact that the tension both directly around Taiwan and more broadly in the region will increase. One of the manifestations of awareness of the Chinese threat was the establishment in 2021 of AUKUS, a military and political alliance of the United States, Australia and Great Britain, sometimes called NATO of the Pacific. The US pivot in this direction will continue. At the same time, however, the American military presence in Europe, unlike 20 years ago, is growing and will probably continue to grow in 2022.

However, US pressure on the European Union will also increase to join the US policy of containment of China. In the case of Germany, the pressure will meet with resistance, which may mean sometimes tension.

War in Ukraine? Russian aggression never stopped

Both the crisis of the American and Chinese economies, or both (in the event of war or even a firefight), will mean a drop in the prices of energy resources. It will be painfully felt by the Russian economy, which the Kremlin kleptocrats have not made independent of the prices of raw materials. The problem, however, is that Russia, dependent on commodity prices, is as aggressive when it feels strong and when the Kremlin elites, unable to give the nation bread, begin to look for opportunities to play the games.

In the Russian reality, the Games are like a new attack on Ukraine, although it is worth recalling at this point that the Russian aggression against Ukraine has never stopped, and Ukrainian soldiers are dying on the front lines in Donbas every month. Russia remains an aggressive and revanchist state, and its recent demands on the United States and NATO, the essence of which is that the West would not only undertake not to extend the pact, but even make already existing members, such as Poland, second-class states that Russia remains a threat to its neighbors.

Nevertheless (and in fact exactly why) in 2022, as all indications are, there will be direct US-Russian negotiations in Geneva. Contrary to the frequently appearing hysterical voices in Poland, the probability that the United States will make concessions that would mean Poland being placed in the Russian sphere of influence is zero. However, such certainty is no longer possible with regard to Ukraine, although informal guarantees for Moscow that Kiev will not join NATO are more likely here.

Belarus, that is THE END

2021 is the year in which Belarus, this time probably irretrievably, entered for good no longer the sphere of Russia’s influence, but the zone of exclusive interests of Moscow. The probability of a reversal of this trend is minimal. In a formal sense, Belarus will probably remain an independent state, but the integration of Russia and Belarus in 2022 will probably accelerate. It cannot be ruled out that there will be permanent Russian military bases just beyond our eastern border. This biggest catastrophe of Polish foreign policy, it is worth mentioning here, nobody in Poland really cares, it does not cause serious debate and reflection as to whether we could have done something differently in the last 30 years.

The rest of the article is available under the video

German-French engine

In Germany, there has been a change in the position of chancellor. One of the latest moves by Chancellor Angela Merkel was a diplomatic intervention on the migration crisis on the Polish-Belarusian and Belarus-Lithuanian border. The new chancellor will continue Merkel’s line and the corrections will not be substantial.

Taking into account the presidential elections in France scheduled for April, nothing important will happen in EU politics by mid-year. The federalisation debate will be as vigorous as it was in 2021 and in the preceding years. In other words, nothing will result from it (apart from further palpitations of the heart of journalists according to which Germany wants to build the Fourth Reich).

At the same time, however, both the shape of the government coalition in Germany and the expected result of the elections in France, regardless of whether it means the re-election of President Emmanuel Macron or the victory of Valérie Pécresse, will mean that the German-French engine driving the EU will start working from the middle of the year. with new power and will aim at further tightening of integration. The issues of the rule of law will probably be raised more strongly than before, and the disbursement of EU funds may be associated with concessions by Poland and Hungary in this regard.

Potential atomic bomb

In early 2021, the resumption of talks on the Iranian nuclear program was viewed with optimism. It soon turned out that there were not so many reasons for optimism. The victory of the hardliner presidential candidate in the Iran elections and the fact that Iran started enriching uranium to the level of 60%. i.e. one that does not yet allow for its military use, but which is already very close to this level, means that in 2022 the West will face a choice – or it will accept Iran as Iran is, and at the same time will recognize its sphere of influence and Tehran will instead give up its nuclear ambitions, or it will have to come to terms with the fact that Iran will become nuclear weapons. Alternatively, we are facing a war with Iran. In any scenario, it is very clear that Donald Trump’s withdrawal from the Iran deal did not do any good.

Forgotten atomic bombs. Alleged and Existing

Relatively little has happened regarding the North Korean nuclear program. The growing crisis in Korea means that this issue may return at any time, because, as we know, the worse things are in Korea, the more Kim Jong Un is threatening his, probably already constructed, nuclear bomb and missiles.

2021 was such a quiet year in relations between India and Pakistan that their conflict was almost forgotten. Optimists say that the two countries are as close as ever to an agreement, pessimists that domestic politics in both New Delhi and Islamabad will not allow them to come to an understanding for years. In any scenario, the fact that both countries are not on the verge of war is cause for optimism.

A few forgotten rules of politics

In the Middle East, the war in Syria is dying out, the tragic war in Yemen is invariably waging, and there are fighting in Ethiopia and Libya. These wars prove the immutable rules of politics. All together, civil wars can be worse than the traditional ones between states. The war in Syria also proves that winners are not judged, the one in Yemen, that the world does not care about dying children, the one in Ethiopia, that the world does not even know about some wars, and the one in Libya that history can be perverse . This is because Saif al-Islam Gaddafi is the candidate for the presidency of Libya, who proclaims the need for reconciliation and unification of Libya. Son of Muammar. Importantly, compared to veterans of the fight for freedom, it makes a pretty good impression.

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(mba;KF)

 
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