A landmark poll conducted across 21 countries has unveiled a nuanced global perspective on power dynamics and geopolitics. While Western values are widely admired, the poll reflects a departure from exclusive allegiance to major powers, signaling a fragmentation of established blocs. Notably, respondents express a preference for neither a solely US- nor Chinese-led group.
CHALLENGING THE UNIPOLAR
The findings challenge the notion of a unipolar world, emphasizing that countries are seeking diversified alliances rather than being tethered to a single power. However, when it comes to security cooperation, a significant number in polled nations express a preference for aligning with the US over China.
The allure of Western countries, particularly the US and the EU, remains strong, with a majority of respondents from diverse nations, including Brazil, Saudi Arabia, South Korea, Turkey, and South Africa, expressing a desire to live in the EU or the US. In contrast, only 5% of citizens from non-Western countries would choose to reside in China, highlighting a clear preference for Western societies.
SURVIVAL OF LIBERAL SOCIETIES
Despite the admiration for American and European values, doubts about the survival of liberal societies emerge. A considerable number of respondents outside Europe anticipate the EU’s potential collapse within the next two decades. This sentiment is particularly prominent in China, Russia, and Saudi Arabia. Additionally, there is skepticism about the endurance of democracy in the US, with majorities in China and Saudi Arabia, and almost half in Russia and Turkey, envisioning a shift away from democracy within the same timeframe.
The geopolitical landscape, as portrayed by the poll, underscores a complex reality where middle powers, such as Turkey, India, Brazil, South Africa, and Saudi Arabia, play increasingly assertive roles. The report suggests that the EU should adapt its strategies to this changing environment by broadening the scope of its alliances.
Notably, respondents in non-Western countries express beliefs that Russia will emerge victorious in the war in Ukraine within the next five years, posing an existential threat to central and eastern European countries.
In response to these findings, the report calls for Europe to invest more in the military and security aspects of hard power, advocating for a strategic approach that embraces new partnerships. As the geopolitical landscape continues to evolve, the report encourages European policymakers to navigate this à la carte future by seeking diverse collaborations on crucial issues.