Aftermath of Corona Pandemic : Shape of the World Politics -Abdullah Al Mahmud

Cover Story

Corona pandemic has almost swept away all the records of human civilization, being the most widespread pandemic that has already invadedalmost 210 countries of the world and over 3, 20,000 people have, till now (May, 2020), died due to such virus infection. But only this unfortunate exponential death rate or infection doesn’t significantly measure its undergoing deep troubles, while social rules are being paranoid, regular state functioning has been collided, economic activitieshave totally been washed away from our daily scheduled life. It is considered as the biggest human challenge since the World War II. It has already mademillions of people jobless which had neverhappened in any economic turmoil or financial crisis. Countries are recklessly blaming each other’s policy, making falsehood and spreading a hate speech on this pandemic’s being a ”Biological Weapon” used to win in the world’s power battle by China- but how far of these debates go and what will the world look like if these political rumors amidst the corona pandemic happen to be inevitably true?
Sailing its barbaric journey from a single city of China, Hubei, corona virus has created a world with mass complicated political troubles. Professor Dr. Noah Harari, a famous author who wrote “Sapiens: A brief history of humankind”, has pondered that this corona virus infection will create a world with “less accessibility and openness”, geo-politically. The aftermath political effect of this corona virus, internally, among the countries is way too dangerous. Edward Snowden, the founder of WikiLeaks, was appeared in an interview where he warned that countries can take an unexpected and suspicious advantage of these restricted state laws, during this pandemic, with less accessibility; more state authorizing; more citizen-monitoring online and offline; as well as limited freedom of rights. As we can see, states have already been practicing these malfunctions; Russia forced its citizens to stay home with a fear of gunshot, North Korea has been neglecting almost all the human rights after this pandemic outbreak. But how much of these restricted or limited internal policies make an impact on current world views?
One miserable example of political arena’s being linked to the CoronaVirus is spreading xenophobia and racism. UN secretary Antonio Guterres, on May 8,2020, said that “this pandemic continues to unleash a Tsunami of hate and xenophobia, scapegoating and scare-mongering”. Although he urged governments to take necessary steps to stop this hate speech and xenophobic violence, world leaders don’t it is right, sounds crazy though. During this pandemic, crude oil demand had fallen into so miserable rate that the price has been shockingly dropped from $18 per barrel to -$40 dollar per barrel, which seems not to recover in any time near future. The US investors who put their all money in oil imports from Saudi Arabia are now almost bankrupt. This doing will instantly increase the troubles inside the US economy as well as Saudi Arabia’s, which in combination might affect the world economy. As Saudi’s economy was simply an oil-based economy with no mentionable diversification, this oil crash will lead to this country’s debt increase which, for now, is estimated to be crossing $228 billion dollars. On the contrary, US will surely lose its four-decade oil kingdom’s throne, we might not say who the replacement is but we can argue about its end. Oil-trading countries have already lost their faith on US currency; Saudi Arabia is seeking to trade in other options but US dollar. They threatened US to ditch their currency, not it seemed to be true. But with a military force sorely entitled to US protection and trainings, can Saudi Arabia make really this happen like Libya and Iraq did in past? No matter what’d be the doing of Trump’s administration, it will always be a big insult to the huge investments US government made back in 2002-2014 by the name of “War on Terror” in Middle East, just to ensure US hegemonic power and US dollars’ supremacy all over the world. The Soudi-UAE lobby will face hardship in future. Their position of anti political Islam and interference in internal issues of neighboring Muslims countries may also face difficult situation. They will not be able to invest their petrodollar behind the Haftar Force in Libya, Sisi government in Egypt and against the Al-Nahda Party in Tunisia, Muslim Brotherhood, Coalition Government in Libya, Hudi Rebellions in Yemen which may change the geopolitical statistics in Middle East.

The world political game plan could be changed. As we see, in World War II when politicians lambasted Japan, more than 120000 Japanese were rounded up and sent to internment camp. China is now the “New-Japan”. Countries in US-Allies will certainly take strict measures against China. ‘War on terror’ may not happen, as Chinese are not yet fortunately terrorists in western eye for their so called ” Weaponization of Coronavirus”, but still there’s a huge possibility of rigid foreign policy as well as trade policy to be taken against China. Why would the world leaders do so? Probably to stop the repeated fall in their popularity. Because, there’s evidence that after corona pandemic outbreaks, Donald Trump has seen a 6point drop in his popularity while the state Mayors popularity have been increasing day by day (New York city mayor Andrew Cuomo’s popularity has seen a huge 55 points uprising since corona outbreak).
As the evidence says 84 countries have already declared a state of emergency in combating this pandemic, this may lead to a huge misuse of power. 38 countries have, till now, restricted freedom of press as a result of this pandemic. This will cost freedom of speech in the next few years, even we can diminish this virus, and we’ll have to combat the future freedom challenges by the states, obligatory press restrictions. No country allows any mass protest now, which may increase the future challenge of political level-playing field across the globe. As for now, a number of countries’ ruling party have been using Lockdown situation selectively against their opponent party, which will surely increase political mistrust among the parties.
This pandemic would surprisingly build a newer form of patriotism among the countries. The citizens would seek national well-being above globalization. As we have already seen this pandemic has perhaps questioned the effectiveness of globalization in facing global problems, or diseases. Even the global agencies of health care, WHO, couldn’t make a conducive progress in this pandemic. Citizens saw the failed shadow of the globalization, and saw their true heroes- true patriots. No armed forces have fought against this pandemic as you can’t just shoot the virus and make it disappear. No top-notch country-leader did make any “Lincoln Speech” to fight this pandemic; if they’d do it won’t help the fight against corona pandemic. True patriots were some simple citizens, no visionary leader. Doctors, nurses, pharmacists, store clerks, utility workers. Doctors all over the world have been fighting from frontline against this pandemic; many of them are suddenly saddled with unfathomable tasks. Even with a high chance of contamination and death, they never signed out. This will make an impact in the citizen’s next Outlook of bringing their national hero which will, probably, create a new form of patriotism all over the world.
Archon Fung, a Professor of Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government, though made a quite different scenario of this pandemic’s aftermath effect on global politics. He argued that just as the trauma of World War II laid the profound foundation for a stronger American government and national solidarity, CoronaVirus crisis might sow the seeds of a new civic federalism. In this form of new civic federalism state and localities become the center of Justice, solidarity and national upfront. Citizens are now questioning their national leadership in the face of unprecedented challenges, even a big portion of the citizens are bemoaning the failure to mitigate this pandemic in the first place, out bursting the failure to take precaution by the country politicians or government. This sprite to seek their right- according to Archon, will switch into a good civic federalism all over the world.
In near future, we may beat this pandemic. We can again see the seeds growing just like it used to grow, we may see the mills and factories are again groaning to produce for the world. We will surpass this corona pandemic even after all these loss, aforementioned. But how can we trade-off between these losses and future human development- A world with less accessibility and trust, a society with less freedom and more racism, xenophobia? How can we solve these socio-economic trends? Even though we’ll be able to manage this trade-off in short time, will this solution be sustainable in a new world after corona pandemic situation with a more complicated and reformed world politics? Thetorchbearers of the future politics will have to seek these answers and will have to make this planet habitable with infinite freedom and humanity once again.