Since Donald Trump was elected President of the United States there has been speculation that his administration will halt the process of globalization. Such speculation arises from an incorrect characterization of globalization as a politically-driven phenomenon.
Globalization is neither a left-wing nor right-wing phenomenon. It is a social and economic reality of the 21st century.
It is a social phenomenon that can be observed by the interconnection among citizens of different countries through the use of modern technologies, such as the internet. It is also an economic phenomenon generated by the expansion of international business.
Globalization creates a series of relationships that need to be regulated by international organizations because a single nation cannot deal with them by itself. For instance, the World Trade Organization regulates international trade, the World Bank provides funds to lift the economy of developing countries, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) secures global financial stability, and the International Atomic Energy Agency monitors the use of nuclear weapons and safeguards the security of nuclear plants worldwide. All these issues need to be dealt with by international organizations.
The structure and administration of international institutions constitutes the political aspect of globalization, which is called global governance. Globalization can thrive only when there is a well-defined world order, based on clear and universal rules.
To be effective, global governance shall reflect the political and economic balances of world nations. As the world’s largest economy and the strongest military power, the United States shall carry a leadership role in shaping world affairs, preserving global peace, and creating prosperity for future generations.
This was the world order established by the end of World War II, which placed “America first.” However, with the rise of the Soviet Union and the Non-Aligned Movement, American influence in international organizations has diminished after World War II. Today, the United States is struggling to maintain leadership in a multipolar world.
The Trump doctrine of “America first” is a return to the world order that was established by Franklin Delano Roosevelt in the forties and reasserted by Ronald Reagan in the eighties. In both cases, such doctrine preserved global stability and boosted globalization. In fact, after winning the war, the United States was instrumental in the creation of the United Nations and the Bretton Woods Institutions (World Bank and IMF), which are important pillars of global governance. And after Ronald Reagan caused the collapse of the Soviet Union, the world overcame the division between the Western and the Eastern Blocs. As a result, international rules such as reductions of tariffs or sanctions against nuclear proliferation became universal and are now implemented by all countries.
The Trump administration has the opportunity to re-establish America as the defender of a world order based on freedom and the pursuit of prosperity.
It should not oppose globalization but rather reclaim the U.S. leadership role in a global, interconnected world.
Francesco Stipo is the President of the Houston Energy Club, a member of the National Press Club in Washington D.C., a Fellow of the World Academy of Art and Science, and recently joined the Bretton Woods Committee. Born in Italy in 1973, Dr. Stipo is a naturalized United States citizen. He holds a Ph.D. in International Law and a Master Degree in Comparative Law from the University of Miami. To read more of his reports, Click Here Now.
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