El imperativo de llenar el vacío de liderazgo global

SEÚL – ¿Ha entrado el mundo en una nueva era de caos? La política vacilante de Estados Unidos hacia Siria ciertamente así lo sugiere. En efecto, el amargo legado de las invasiones de Irak y Afganistán, seguido por la crisis financiera de 2008, ha hecho que no solo se vuelva reacio a utilizar su poder militar, incluso cuando se cruzan "líneas rojas", sino también poco dispuesto a asumir ninguna carga importante para mantener su posición de hegemonía global. Si ya no está dispuesto a hacerlo, ¿quién tomará su lugar?

Los gobernantes de China han demostrado su falta de interés en un liderazgo mundial activo al rechazar abiertamente las llamadas a convertirse en un "participante responsable" en los sistemas políticos y económicos internacionales. Mientras tanto, si bien Rusia puede mantener la ilusión de que es una potencia mundial, últimamente parece interesada más que nada en frustrar a Estados Unidos siempre que sea posible, incluso si eso va en contra de sus propios intereses en el largo plazo. Y Europa se enfrenta a demasiados problemas internos para asumir un liderazgo importante en los asuntos mundiales.

Como era de esperar, esta situación ha socavado gravemente la eficacia de las instituciones internacionales: baste como ejemplo la ineficacia de la respuesta del Consejo de Seguridad de las Naciones Unidas a la crisis de Siria y el fracaso de la actual ronda de negociaciones comerciales de la Organización Mundial del Comercio (OMC). La situación se asemeja a la década de 1930, cuando, como señalara el historiador económico Charles P. Kindleberger, el vacío de liderazgo llevó a una subproducción de bienes públicos a nivel global, con lo que se profundizó la Gran Depresión.

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