Que reste-t-il de 1989?

NEW YORK – Il y a vingt ans, il n’y eut, pour déplorer la chute du Mur de Berlin et l’effondrement de l’empire soviétique, que les inébranlables de l’utopie communiste. Certains se sont évidemment cramponné à la possibilité d’expériences dites de “socialisme réellement existant.” D’autres ont critiqué le triomphalisme du “nouvel ordre mondial,” incarné par George H.W. Bush. Et le manque d’égards que l’Allemagne de l’Ouest a manifesté vis-à-vis des décombres de l’Allemagne de l’Est n’était pas loin de ressembler à de la cruauté.

Quoiqu’il en soit, la vie valait d’être vécue en 1989 (sauf en Chine, où on éliminait les démocrates). Beaucoup d’entre nous avions le sentiment d’être à l’aube d’un nouvel âge, où la liberté et la justice devaient jaillir d’un bout à l’autre de la planète, comme des fleurs. Nous savons aujourd’hui qu’il n’en a rien été.

En Europe, la xénophobie et le populisme s’acharnent sur les démocraties. Les partis sociaux-démocratres se dérobent, tandis que les démagogues de droite se posent en rempart des “valeurs occidentales” contre des hordes de musulmans. Et les revers économiques de ces dernières années semblent donner raison à Mikhaïl Gorbatchev, qui s’alarme de ce que le “capitalisme occidental, privé de son vieil adversaire, ne se voie comme le champion incontesté et le héros du progrès global, et ne s’apprête à précipiter les sociétés occidentales et le reste du monde dans une nouvelle impasse historique.”

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