The World Made Easy
The world does not need to be complex and confusing. It can be made simpler so that the business, political, social, and economic implications of global news briefs beaming across televisions and electronic devices can be easily grasped. Key to this is knowing that a five-hundred-year competition for global supremacy between the Chinese, European, Islamic, and Russian empires only ended in 1945. When it did, the world had 57 independent nations. After all empires were dissolved in 1991, there were 193, and each nation carried histories of empires in the form of conquest, religions followed, languages practiced, diversified populations, repressive rule, and histories of discrimination. A Brief History of International Relations: The World Made Easy explores this history of global conflict to contextualize and simplify the often perplexing relations between nations and empires.
Chapter 15. Wars Winners and Losers: Aftermaths of Empire
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WARS WINNERS AND LOSERS
Aftermaths of Empire
The competition for empire was a period of wars and more wars—500 years of empires winning and losing wars as they vied for global supremacy. In one way, the extension of influence, the European empires won. Their influence reached every region, completely dominating four: Western Europe and the three New World regions. The New World became near-Western European mini-mes right down to having European-blood majorities. In comparison, the Chinese, Islamic and Russian empires each influentially dominated one region in the Old World.
Really, there was no outright winner because the competition took everyone out. The Chinese, Islamic and Russian empires had been dissolved before the end of the Era of Empire, and so were most European empires. The British Empire was the only empire standing tall when the competition ended, although British colonies occupied during WWII would take issue with this. The British had succeeded in extending their rule over the largest expanse of land in history. But like every empire still standing, according to the UN Charter, they had to forego their colonies on request. So, if the British won, it wasn’t much of a win, particularly when merged with the guilt that all empires felt, or should have felt, for centuries of aggressive and immoral behaviors.
If winners are defined as those best positioned to succeed in the Era of Nation States, the list includes some...
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