A falta de realpolitik na Rússia e na China

PARIS – No seu recente livro sobre as origens da Primeira Guerra Mundial, The War That Ended Peace, Margaret MacMillan conclui que a única coisa que se pode dizer com segurança sobre as suas causas é que a liderança importa. Ninguém queria realmente a guerra, mas ninguém sabia como se opor a ela, uma vez que os grandes estadistas da Alemanha, como Otto von Bismarck, cuja auto-contenção manteve a paz na Europa durante décadas, estavam em falta na Europa em 1914. Uma falta de liderança semelhante foi sentida no recente comportamento da Rússia e da China.

Na preparação para a Primeira Guerra Mundial, os líderes políticos e militares não conseguiram compreender como é que a produção industrial e o transporte de massas alteraram o carácter da guerra. A Guerra Civil Americana deveria ter servido de aviso aos europeus. Mas uma Europa que se considerava o centro do mundo, que exportava as suas rivalidades para a África e Ásia em nome de uma “missão civilizadora”, era totalmente incapaz de prestar atenção às lições duras do Mundo Novo.

Hoje, nem o Presidente russo, Vladimir Putin, nem o Presidente chinês, Xi Jinping, parecem ter aprendido também essas lições. Na Ucrânia, a Rússia deve escolher que tipo de relação quer ter com a Europa. Se a Ucrânia regressar à esfera de acção do Kremlin, seja por meio de uma reintegração directa ou de algum tipo de “Finlandização”, a Rússia irá acabar por reacender um antigo problema europeu: tal como aconteceu à França, entre 1643 e 1815, e à Alemanha no período Wilhelmine, será “demasiado” para os seus vizinhos e “insuficiente” para as suas ambições.

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