US at the Center of Middle East Chaos, Global Instability
And yet again, the US has landed itself at the center of Middle East chaos which is most likely to spill over triggering another round of global instability. As if Russia’s invasion of Ukraine wasn’t enough, added on by the mounting toll of illegal migration in Europe and the United States and the ongoing wars and coups in African countries, there’s chaos.
The US had been trying to corner China and Iran for not towing by its rules, but it itself got sucked into a twirling storm to help Israel, pushing the world to a greater height of multipolarity. And this further undermines the Western-led international order and boosts their own global standing.
Antony Blinken, US Secretary of State, rightfully stated in a 2019 article ‘American First is only making the world worse. Here’s a better approach’ for Brookings that the global role the United States embraced after World War II began to fade with the collapse of the Soviet Union and was shattered by the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, and the 2008 financial crisis.
He said as geopolitical competition intensifies, diplomacy must be supplemented with deterrence. “Words alone will not dissuade the Vladmir Putins and Xi Jinpings of this world. Recognizing their traditional imperial spheres of interest will only embolden them to expand farther while betraying the sovereign nations that fall under their dominion.”
New Era of Real Time Chaos
But the current war in Gaza, Israel’s mission to eradicate Hamas for October 7 and support from the US has plunged the world in a new era. The world is witnessing, in real time, Israel’s atrocities in Gaza – bombardment of residential buildings, schools, refugee camps, hospitals, killings of women and children, cutting of access to water and electricity, denying fuel.
Blinken wrote that force can be a necessary adjunct to effective diplomacy. He gave examples of Syria. “In Syria, we rightly sought to avoid another Iraq by not doing too much, but we made the opposite error of doing too little. Without bringing appropriate power to bear, no peace could be negotiated, much less imposed. Today, we see consequences, in hundreds of thousands of civilians dead, in millions of refugees who have destabilized Europe and in the growing influence of Russia, Iran and Hezbollah.”
In 2023, the Middle East is more united than ever. The US had been trying to strengthen Arab states relations with Israel. Washington left out when Saudi Arabia and Iran normalized relations. Then it started to push for normalization with Israel, but Hamas’ Operation al-Aqsa Flood.
US Caught in Diplomatic and Military Swirl
The war in Gaza has changed the entire diplomatic and military landscape into one that Washington had hoped to avoid. Current conditions present daunting new challenges for the Biden administration, including the fearsome threat of wider regional confrontation.
Tarik Cyril Amar, a regional expert, believes the US behavior is decisive. “Just imagine a world in which Washington had reacted differently and restrained Israel. Its allies and clients would, of course, have fallen into line. Instead, the Biden administration deterred anyone who could have been tempted to interfere with Israel. Washington has also supplied arms and ammunition, intelligence and special forces assistance, and provided diplomatic cover.”
He pointed out that the world needs to wake up to the single largest danger to a modest minimum of fair and reliable global order and stability – the US.