JOURNAL OF INTERDISCIPLINARY STUDIES
Vol. XXXV 2023
THE AMERICAN CENTURY & ITS CHALLENGES:
U.S., RUSSIA, P.R. CHINA
JIS XXXV 2023: 1-32
THE NEW COLD WAR: U.S., RUSSIA, P.R. CHINA
Institute for Interdisciplinary Research
This essay seeks to explore major challenges confronting the United States in a new Cold War era. It proposes that the Cold War entered a new phase, post-1991, with the Soviet Union restructured as the Commonwealth of Independent States. Yet, CIS is increasingly a “Ring of Instability” which Russia seeks to remedy by supporting pro-Russian factions and building new buffer zones after the Russia-Georgia War in 2008, annexing Crimea in 2014, and invading Ukraine in 2022. But P.R. China’s quest for world dominance via extension of “soft power” and “unrestricted warfare” poses an even greater challenge to the Free World. The U.S. confronts a Sino-Russian axis and their client states–North Korea, Vietnam, Laos, Cuba–sharing a Marxist-Leninist ideology and totalitarian one-party systems wrapped in nationalism. While healing its internal social divisions due to identity politics, the U.S. needs to reclaim its technological lead, rebuild its manufacturing, and strengthen alliances, where its partners need to take on greater responsibility for the common defense.
JIS XXXV 2023: 33-60
CHRISTIAN REALISM IN THE NEW AMERICAN CENTURY:
THREE GENERATIONS OF NIEBUHRIAN REALISM
Eric D. Patterson
This essay provides a novel history of Christian Realism, its key themes, and the persistence of this analytical framework for nearly a century. Christian Realism is a community of discourse associated with scholars and foreign policy observers like Reinhold Niebuhr and Paul Ramsey, but lives on today in the writings of Christian just war thinkers, international relations scholars, ethicists, and policy experts. Three generations of Christian Realism focus on anti-utopianism, anti-totalitarianism, and similar perspectives. Christian Realists share a continuity of approach to policy analyses from a distinctly Augustinian perspective. Both the theological themes–sin, human potential, limits and restraint, neighbor love–and the major foreign policy questions of war, security, and peace, have a certain perennial quality, whether the theorist is of the first (1932-65), second (1965-90), or the contemporary third generation (1991-present). This essay looks at the theological themes, the perennial questions Christian Realists address, and the increasingly orthodox theological commitments of today’s Christian Realists as compared to the theological liberals of Niebuhr’s era.
JIS XXXV 2023: 61-80
WHERE ARE YOU GOING, UKRAINE?
POLAND’S VIEW OF THE RUSSIA – UKRAINE CONFLICT
W. Julian Korab-Karpowicz
University of Opole, Poland
The geopolitical location between Russia and Germany has historically determined Poland’s foreign policy in which a privileged place has been given to Ukraine. Polish policy-makers perceive Ukrainian independence as the main barrier preventing the restoration of Russian imperial ambitions. Consequently, Poland has been unwavering in its commitment to supporting the Ukrainians in their resistance to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in February 2022. This attitude is clearly visible in Poland’s Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki’s 2023 lecture at the University of Heidelberg. Nevertheless, relations between Ukraine and Poland, and the current Russia-Ukraine conflict, are far more complex than is mostly acknowledged. The theses on foreign policy that Morawiecki presented may be contested. Polish policy-makers do not recognize that the Ukrainian nationalist ideas, based on the slogan “Nation above all,” are very different from theirs. Upon proper recognition of the multifaceted causes of war, a cease-fire and a peaceful settlement of the crisis could be achieved.
JIS XXXV 2023: 81-102
U.S. GEOPOLITICAL STRATEGIES AND CHINA’S CHALLENGE
Daniel W. Hollis III
Jacksonville State University
Geopolitical studies that emerged in the twentieth century have mushroomed into a momentous scholarly industry. Culturally-framed nationalism is driven geopolitically by a type of internalized nativist outlook which surveils the ill-intentions of foreign adversaries. Nationalism’s climax came with its enshrinement in the Paris Treaties (1919-20) ending World War I. By 1917, the first totalitarian system arose in Russia, a novel form of government that sought total domination of all aspects of life. The Cold War after 1948 pitted two opposite forms of government: U.S. constitutional republic vs. totalitarian one-party Soviet Union, pursuing an active foreign policy implementing a global geopolitical strategy. After the collapse of the Soviet Union (1991), the U.S. appeared as the singular superpower. Yet, a revived post-Mao China offered a challenge to U.S. global role. This essay explores recent developments in that competition, demonstrating that the geopolitics of both sides exhibit not only suspicion of the other’s intentions but also a misunderstanding of the respective political cultures which complicates any peaceful resolution.
JIS XXXV 2023: 103-122
CHINA’S DECEIT OF U.S. YOUTH: GLOBAL RE-EDUCATION,
FENTANYL, HI-TECH APPS AND CONFUCIUS INSTITUTES
William H. Jeynes
California State University-Long Beach
This essay addresses four of the primary ways that China is deceiving America’s youth into self-defeating and self-destructive behavior. The strategies include global re-education as indoctrination, the production of prerequisite ingredients for fentanyl, hi-tech apps such as TikTok, and Confucius Institutes. The evidence shows that too many Western, including American, policy-makers readily accept Chinese Communist Party’s revisionist history, and tend to disparage what often are reasonably accurate accounts of history from their own countries. The essay also calls for greater awareness and compassion regarding fentanyl opioid addiction and comprehension of TikTok’s deleterious effects. Americans need to be more aware of the views of professors who have participated in Confucius Institutes that compromise academic freedom. The essay concludes that the United States should be more discerning about China’s motives, especially with regards to youths, in extending “soft power” to Sino-form the world, and act to counter China’s quest for world dominance.
JIS XXXV 2023: 123-144
AMERICA’S NEW INDEPENDENCE DAY: ENVISIONING AN ERA
OF SELF-SUFFICIENCY IN A DEGLOBALIZING WORLD
South Florida Bible College & Theological Seminary
Confronted by rising powers with autocratic structures such as China and Russia, it is essential for the United States to be less dependent on nations that do not share its values. Rather than a new era of isolationism, this essay proposes a renewed sense of confidence and determination for America to continue to be the leader of the Free World. To be able to support others, the U.S. first needs to look after its own interests as a nation-state. Specifically, this means: (1) Gaining and maintaining energy independence by investing in an energy mix that is both economically and ecologically sustainable; (2) Revitalizing manufacturing in the U.S. by creating an investment-friendly environment and taking advantage of the innovative technologies of the Third and Fourth Industrial Revolutions; and (3) Reevaluating the nation’s foreign-policy commitments by rebuilding its military capabilities in order to focus on its own defense and a few key allies, rather than spending resources in engagements that are not directly connected to America’s self-interest.
JIS XXXV 2023: 145-170
REINHOLD NIEBUHR’S VISION:
CHRISTIAN REALISM IN AN EMERGENT WORLD ORDER
Charles A. McDaniel
Nation-states inevitably attempt to impose their will upon others, such as expressed by Russia in Ukraine today. That reality is determined by the fallenness of creation and inherently self-interested nature of individual and especially collective action, two principles that forge the core of the political theology known as Christian Realism. As the most prominent spokesman for this movement, Reinhold Niebuhr contributed remarkable insights into human nature and institutions in the twentieth century, a time when liberal and totalitarian passions ran high. Contemporary events suggest the need to revisit Niebuhr’s wisdom concerning the corruptions of the human heart and political institutions. This essay examines Russia’s devastation of Ukraine and China’s hegemonic employment of “soft power” in view of Niebuhr’s political theology, with lessons for the wider standoff between liberal democracies and authoritarian governments. It asserts that the intractability of problems in international relations is amplified by the estrangement of politics and theology in our time.
JIS XXXV 2023: 171-172
U.S. HOUSE RESOLUTION CONDEMNS CHINA’S LAOGAI, 2005
U.S. House of Representatives
U.S. HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES OVERWHELMINGLY PASSES
RESOLUTION CONDEMNING THE LAOGAI, December 16, 2005
___________________________________ JIS XXXV 2023: 173-176 THE GULAG MEETS CAPITALISM WITH CHINESE CHARACTERISTICS J. Michael Cole Global Taiwan Institute Review of Nicole Kempton & Nan Richardson, eds. Laogai: The Machinery of Repression in China. Washington, DC: Umbrage Editions, 2009. ___________________________________ JIS XXXV 2023: 177-188 ATHENAI WASHINGTON APPEAL MAY 13, 2020 CONCERNING THE THREAT OF AUTHORITARIAN INFLUENCE AND THE DEFENSE OF PUBLIC INSTITUTIONS College Democrats & College Republicans College Student Petition to Close All Confucius Institutes in U.S. ___________________________________