Nationalism in the World
Name of Course
Nationalism in the World
Nationalism can be seen as a social, economic, and political system that is mainly characterized by the promotion of interests of a particular nation. The system is comprised of a people working towards a self-governing state, with a government that controls facets of the economy to promote the self-interest of the state by setting policies that strengthen the local entities that own the factors of production. Sabanadze (2010) postulates that nationalism is a doctrine and a political movement, whose main concept is a nation- which is the bearer of collective rights and the source of political legitimacy. Nationalism dates back to the ancient times, however, it became more pronounced in the 18th century. Modern nationalism ideology is based on the logic that an individual’s loyalty to the nation or state surpasses interests to one’s self or group. Triandafyllidou (1998) argues that nationalism is inclined towards developing and maintaining a national identity with regard to common social attributes such as politics and religion, language and culture, and a belief in a common origin. With this regard, nationalism has far-reaching implications in the way nations relate in different fronts despite the multilateral cooperations that have been entered into by different nations for a common goal. The following section will highlight and address issues of global nature that relate to nationalism.
Politics and Foreign Policy
Politicians who appeal to their nations that they will stand up to their people and put their nations first are growing and proving to be powerful and influential (Rachman, 2014). Further, Rachman indicates that nationalism has a far-reaching impact on the foreign policy of a nation with increasing international tensions and non-guaranteed efforts on multilateral cooperation. For instance, in the year 2014, Scottish nationalists were on the brink of securing a massive win in the referendum on independence from the larger United Kingdom. In Germany, the far-right Alternative for Germany made its way in 2017 to federal parliament for the first time and it has been pushing for strict anti-immigrant policies, against Chancellor Merkel’s open door policy about refugees (BBC, 2018).
Globalization can lead to the weakening of a nation-state and abrasion of its authority, which has led to the disintegration of some of the larger states into new ones (Dubey, 2017). According to Forbes (2016), globalization was supposed to bring about free trade by reducing barriers between nations such as tariffs, subsidies and value-added taxes. This, however, is not the case as there are still many barriers to free trade and new ones are being introduced by different nations, for instance, the recent introduction of tariff on steel and aluminum imports which is likely to cause retaliation with similar tariffs on products from America to other countries.
On the flip side, when the idea of globalization pops out not all nationalism is dismissed as negative in the world of today where the number one concern across the globe is the loss of the local culture of a nation. Globalization is said to spur nationalism in four different overlapping ways; as a defensive reaction, as a form of resistance, as a reaction to the increasing need for identity and belonging, and as a source of sense for the common understandings and value systems (Sabanadze., 2010). Because of the fear of diluting or losing the long-standing traditions, nationalists are standing guard to safeguard and preserve their national identity (Forbes, 2016). As a result of nationalism, some Asian countries like China that for a long time depended on imports from the West have found self-identity in their own products and services (Forbes, 2016).
Global bodies like the International Criminal Court, European Union, African Union, World Trade Organizations, United Nations, among others, were formed towards the realization of a common goal for member nations. However, with the resurgence of nationalist politics, the international co-operation efforts have been frustrated putting such bodies to a serious test of time (Rachman, 2014). The EU has been struggling to settle for an agreement on what measures are needed to bring back the glory of Europe’s economy and how to fix Russia, which has increasingly been marginalized. This is likely to make it hard for the nations to live up to the agreement at the United Nations regarding everything from the Middle East to climate-change (Rachman, 2014).
The British voted to leave the European Union while there has been a small but growing threat that France is also likely to pull out, something that will most probably result to the collapse of the EU (Economist, 2016). With such happenings, the Economist (2016) argues that global co-operation will nosedive in the near future and the result will be a harsher and uncertain world, especially for the small countries that are currently under the protection of global rules.
Extreme movement formations have been attributed to nationalism because of the absurd belief that a nation is what gives a sense of meaning to someone’s existence. Nationalist extremist groups engage in their violent activities with the aim of securing a substantial political control over the areas they represent, with a range of objectives which include seeking autonomy from the central state or creating a totally different state separate from the rule of the country that currently exercises government authority over them (Joyce ; Wain, 2014). Globally, there exists a number of examples of groups drawing their inspiration from nationalism to advance their agenda. In the Philippines, for instance, the Moro Liberation Islamic Front has been engaged in violence since 1981 after a split from the Moro National Liberation Front with the aim of separation. The group declared a jihad against the government and the citizens in the year 2000 when the government declined to grant the area they represent an independent Muslim state. a peace deal was, however, reached with the government in 2014 for the creation of autonomous region under self-rule (Joyce ; Wain, 2014).
Recent developments in Europe and America have shown indications that the international community will most likely be less friendly as a result of intolerance to non-citizens witnessed in Europe and America. In the Australian presidential election held recently, Norbert Hofer of the Freedom Party of Australia campaigned with the slogan of “Make Australia Great Again” similar to Trump’s “Make America Great Again” (Ulansky & Witenberg, 2016). Ulansky and Witenberg further observe that Norbert, just like Trump, calls for closed borders particularly to Muslims in addition to raising complains with regard to trade deals entered into with the European Union. As a result of the sorry conditions of refugees who are after shelter from war and unfavorable economic conditions, right-wing parties are coming up, which in reality are a new form of draconian nationalism (Ulansky & Witenberg, 2016).
A large number of British citizens are of the feeling that they are being subjected to EU rules and regulations that unfairly cost them more than what they get in return. As a result, the spreading of such nationalism may not end well because it promotes fear for the immigrants leading to a less safe and unfriendly international community as demonstrated by fact that president Trump is comfortable with South Korea and Japan being in possession of their own nuclear weapons, because in his view, the current arrangement of protecting other countries is not in the best interest of America (Ulansky & Witenberg, 2016).
Re-imagination of Countries
The 21st Century ushered in a phase of change in global geopolitics and economics with the age of Euro-American dominance in the world on the way to its end. China’s national resurgence is the most recent with this regard (“Reimagining China and Asia | Middle East Policy Council”, 2018). China has adopted a more realistic approach to rebuilding Chinese wealth and power, and the results were efforts to match the US economic model in many aspects. In 2012, Chinese offered to work with America towards a new face in the world affairs with regard to the change in power balances between the U.S, China, and her neighbors like Korea, Japan, and India, which have dreadful economies and military capabilities. Such shifts in power balances are majorly driven by economic factors although America’s credibility in Asia is slowly diminishing and China stepping up to occupy that space (“Reimagining China and Asia | Middle East Policy Council”, 2018).
BBC. (2018). Is Europe seeing a nationalist surge? Retrieved from https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-36130006
Dubey, M. (2017). The Nationalism Debate: Past and Present. Indian Journal Of Public Administration, 63(1), 1-12. doi: 10.1177/0019556117689853
Economist. (2016). The new nationalism. Retrieved from https://www.economist.com/leaders/2016/11/19/the-new-nationalism
Forbes. (2016). Retrieved from https://www.forbes.com/sites/onmarketing/2016/09/20/in-the-era-of-new-nationalism-how-will-global-brands-fare/#9f2563e6e4d0
Joyce, P., & Wain, N. (2014). Palgrave dictionary of public order policing, protest and political violence. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan.
Rachman, G. (2014). Nationalism is back. Retrieved from https://www.economist.com/news/2014/11/13/nationalism-is-back
Reimagining China and Asia | Middle East Policy Council. (2018). Retrieved from http://mepc.org/speeches/reimagining-china-and-asia
Sabanadze, N. (2010). Globalization and Nationalism. Central European University Press.
Triandafyllidou, A. (1998). National identity and the ‘other’. Ethnic And Racial Studies, 21(4), 593-612. doi: 10.1080/014198798329784
Ulansky, E., & Witenberg, W. (2016). Is Nationalism on the Rise Globally? Retrieved from https://www.huffingtonpost.com/elena-ulansky/is-nationalism-on-the-ris_b_10224712.html