More than 40% of Americans think a civil war is likely within a decade, it probably won’t happen, but we are already paying the price of US division.
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Four in ten Americans believe that a civil war is likely in the next 10 years, and an overwhelming 60% think that an increase in political violence is to be expected in the next few years.
I don’t think a civil war, as we understand war, is on the horizon, there are no likely scenarios in which a North/South divide may occur, neither conflict, outside courtrooms, between States. However, increased division and local clashes will hurt, not only the United States, but Europe, its allies and the rest of a World left leaderless.
We need a Strong US on the World Stage
Domestic divisions in the US have already been damaging and adversaries have become more likely to test the US’ resolve on the world stage. The G7 and G20 have grown increasingly unable to agree, almost leading to their own irrelevance. Some, like Ray Dalio, have already drawn the decline into their predictions for the future, outlining undemocratic China as the world’s new dominant empire.
A United States that’s preoccupied with fixing internal divisions will be absent on the world stage, where we are trying to solve the Climate Crisis, counter the increased dominance of China, sustain the world’s global food supply chains, ensure access to raw materials to build everything from our phones to computers and electric cars and maintain democracy and global security.
Europe and the US are tied together
We have a responsibility to assist our allies in Washington for two main reasons.
Firstly, the United States was not only instrumental in the liberation of Europe from Nazi Germany, it ensured Europe had what it needed to build its future. The US rebuilt Luxembourg and Europe after World War 2, leading the recovery of the entire continent, through its Marshall Plan, transferring $13 billion ($115 billion today) between 1948 and 1951 to war-torn European nations, as well as funding projects through the World Bank.
Secondly, in the post-war period, the United States began building a liberal world order, which eventually left it as the World’s Superpower at the end of the Cold War. That same world order supports Luxembourg’s and the EU’s role in the World.
Together and with our partners around the world, we built institutions and programmes that progressed humanity. Hollywood and giant American technological companies shaped the way we work and communicate, our aspirations and even our beliefs.
The Internal Politics of the US, concern us too
Internal US divisions could put all of this at risk. And if the US is filled with disinformation, conspiracies and blurred lines between truth, facts and lies; it will divide the nation more than the issues themselves already divide them.
If America continues to be separated by ideologies, race and gender issues, inequities in opportunities for education and economic advancements, the domestic division will, to say the least, obscure and derail public and foreign policy, uncertainty will lead to inaction, and even miscalculated actions.
Suddenly, we would need to learn to live in a world without American leadership, we got but a small taste during Trump’s time as President, and his understanding of NATO. If the current world order breaks down, Europe and our allies will suffer. Furthermore, once challenged, Americans may realise how much they depend and benefit from it. It is in the interest of Luxembourg and the EU to ensure we assist the United States in addressing and healing its internal divisions and help convey the outsized responsibility of the average American citizen, in deciding for the fate of the world.
One way we could assist is by helping young Americans, many of whom claim to be worried about climate change and other crucial social issues, but often fail to participate in elections, turn up and contribute to electing leaders who will support swift action.
Additionally, a united effort by the EU and democracies around the world is required to defend the status quo, while America evolves and heals, to ensure increasing autocratic tendencies, that inevitably disregard urgent global issues, are halted.
I can think of no task of greater importance, than ensuring we step up and show up for our greatest ally, in this time of need. Out of respect for our shared history, and for the survival and betterment of humanity, our governments must take an active and supportive role in the internal business of the United States.
Talks of a Civil War in the United States, is our business too.