This essay will explain the title I chose to give it. The global strategic alignments taking shape at present manifest geopolitical concepts that evolved in the 19th century and influenced the game of alliances and rivalries throughout the last six score years. We are all aware that geography is a permanent feature of the planetary reality which casts history in its mold. Sometimes time folds like a sheet of paper in the shape described by Moebius to bring us back to the period when Britain, ‘ruling the waves’, feared the challenge of the Russian Empire, the hegemon of Eastern Europe and Eurasia, whose borders rapidly drifted towards India. Some new actors, the United States and China have joined the fray and become its central figures but the older ones have not fundamentally changed sides or ambitions.
The Rise and Applications of Geopolitics
In 1904 the British geographer and member of the Privy Council, Halford Mackinder[i] ‘officialised’ the dialectical opposition between continental Asia and its centre the ‘heartland’, and its oceanic girdle dominated by the United Kingdom, all the way from Glasgow to Hong Kong, along a string of bases and friendly harbours which included Lisbon (thanks to Portugal’s alliance with the Court of St James), Gibraltar, Malta, Cyprus, Port Said at the mouth of the Suez Canal, Aden, Karachi, Mumbai, Colombo, Penang and Singapore.
Around Africa the Empire had thrown a necklace of ports of call and possessions such as Madeira, the Gold Coast (Ghana), Sierra Leone, Nigeria, the Cape Colony, Kenya and Somaliland. Access to the East Indies and China was thus well protected from potential enemies and rivals whereas London’s diplomatic ties with Paris and The Hague ensured that no threat to British ships would come from the French and Dutch possessions in Africa and South East Asia.
Mackinder articulated his fear about the threat posed to this long but fragile sea lane, the umbilical cord that connected the British isles to their worldwide domain by an expanding Russian empire whose fleets by then had won access to the Mediterranean through the Black Sea and which controlled Northern Iran as part of a longstanding design to reach the ‘warm waters’ of the Indian Ocean. To the East, the Tzars had opened a ‘window’ to the Pacific at Vladivostok and Port Arthur. According to Mackinder, the Russians were well on their way to establishing their hegemony over all of Asia as they owned its heartland and had extended their dominance over Mongolia and Northern China, taking advantage of the continuing decline of the Middle Kingdom.
Around that time, Westminster took coordina- ting actions to forestall these perceived threats. A series of agreements with Russia in 1885 to 1907 put an end to the decades-old ‘Great Game’ in which the Tzars had sought to subjugate neutral Afghanistan and reach the frontiers of India. By forming the Triple Entente, London, Paris and Saint Petersburg made a common front against Germany and her allies. By striking a treaty with Japan, England helped the Mikado’s armies to stop at Port Arthur the Russian surge towards the China Sea in 1905. The South of Iran and the Arab Gulf principalities were already under British ‘protection’ in order to close off the Arabian Sea to rival powers. At that point, the sole challenger left to the ‘Empire on which the Sun never set’ was the land-hungry German Reich with its confederates Austria-Hungary, Italy and the declining Ottoman empire.
A few years later the First World War, initially seen in Westminster as an opportunity to clip the wings of the rising German eagle, brought about a planetary political seism. The Russian Empire disintegrated in the wake of the October Revolution but was rebuilt in the form of the USSR which took over the geopolitical legacy of the Tzars, including their ambitions in Iran (where Northern Azerbaijan long under Russian control was made into a Soviet Republic) and the Far East where chaos had overtaken China after the fall of the Qing dynasty in 1911.
However, when Hitler rebuilt German power in the thirties (with massive American economic and industrial support), Britain and France saw the USSR as a necessary ally against the new Reich and willy nilly agreed after the second world war to let the world be divided into zones of influence respectively dominated by the United States and the Soviet Union which had come to an understanding to defeat Nazi Germany, together with the British Empire. Once more the ‘rimland’ empire of England and its former American colony allied with the heartland in order to beat a third power which challenged them both. However, as soon as the Third Reich ceased to exist the ‘natural’ antagonism between Russia and the Anglo-Saxon thalassocracies was revived.
Civilizational and Ideological Foundations
No political and strategic project can be sustained sans the support of an ideological construct which can be racial, national or supra- national. The two contending visions now broadly defined as Atlanticism and Eurasianism with their multiple corollaries are no exception to this psycho- sociological principle. Great Britain justified empire building by arguing that her monarchy tempered by liberal parliamentary democracy was superior to all other systems and enabled her to become the most industrialized and the biggest trading state from the early 19th century. At the theological level, the British head of state claimed the succession of the monarchs of Israel, tangibly symbolised by the ‘Stone of Scone’ (An Lia Fail) said to be Jacob’s Pillow and the throne of the kings of Judea. As such the British ruler was the ‘defender of the (Christian) faith and his nation was the ‘New Israel’ (Brit-Ish was said to be derived from Ish- Brit: in Hebrew, the ‘men of the Alliance’ forged between God and his Chosen people).[ii] Over the centuries this semi-theological racial notion came to be extended to the ‘English Speaking Peoples’[iii] and was celebrated by Rudyard Kipling, Cecil Rhodes and many other promoters and bards of the Empire.
Mackinder and other western geopoliticians such as Alfred Thayer Mahan and Nicholas Spykman belonged to that school of thought. They sought to preserve the thalassocracy rimland-based hegemony of the Anglos from the threats posed by rival cousins (the Germans) and steppes ‘barbarians’ (Russians and East Asians).
The USA, inheritor of the Anglo-Saxon and Celtic heritage was to see its relative ethnic homogeneity dissolve as growing waves of immigrants washed ashore from the old continent. British individualistic but hierarchical Liberalism harking back to the Magna Carta had been radicalised into the egalitarian precept of ‘liberty’ although it was understood by many of the founding fathers that the future Federal Republic had to impose some limits on democracy. Less than a century later Abraham Lincoln saw it as his duty to breach the principle of ‘free and voluntary union’ when he proclaimed that the US federation had some sort of divine character and that secession, though constitutionally lawful would be prevented even at the cost of civil war[iv].
In the wake of the mass new arrivals in following decades, the concept of ‘melting pot[v] was devised to facilitate a merger of diverse incoming ethnic groups into the ‘English’ matrix even though racial stratification endured and created a hierarchy which kept the descendants of old British-Dutch settlers above the German, Jewish, Irish, Latin and Hispanic-Americans whereas Native populations and Blacks remained at the bottom. In the sixties, the limited and largely utopian ideal of ‘melting pot’ was replaced by the more realistic description of the United States as a ‘salad bowl’. Yet the power of American popular culture, promoted by an effective propaganda machine driving rampant consumerism enabled the Anglo-Saxon foundational ingredient to absorb and dilute most other socio-linguistic components while the Jewish factor, long suspected and disdained became dominant in most spheres of the new social and cultural architecture.
In all former lands and dependencies of the British Empire, English has entrenched itself as the elite medium of communication and shown its resilience and ability to displace and sometimes snuff out native tongues as shown by the fact, one among millions of such instance, that a French author has penned this article for an Indian publication in the language of the former colonizers.
In a way, the original colonial construct combining the English language, Constitutionalism, the Judeo-Protestant Bible and the commercial and financial vocation (‘The business of America is business’) is still the glue that binds the USA together and Samuel Huntington was perhaps the most influential voice to call for its revival.[vi] Whereas the British Crown upheld the supremacy of the imperial race of Saxons, Normans and Scandinavians and encompassed the diversity of the subjected peoples in the ‘ornamental’ trappings of traditional theocratic power. The American Republic adopted ‘E Pluribus Unum’ (Out of many the One) to meld the settlers, refugees and exiles that swole its population into one Anglophone, howbeit hybrid community.
The vision that Washington and Hamilton had of the thirteen colonies’ future as a new republican Britain prevailed over the more cosmopolitan and ‘classical’ preferences of Jefferson (who wished ancient greek to become the national language) and also over the ‘nativist’ instincts of Benjamin Franklin.
The opposing ideology to Atlanticism has long been defined as ‘Eurasianism’. Its infancy can be found in the first imperial Russian state when it absorbed a number of Slavic, Siberian and Turkic elements, pushed back the Teutonic Knights and defeated the Mongol Golden Horde. It hence acquired a unique identity on the fringe of Europe and yet distinct from it. The cement of the syncretistic state which proclaimed itself ‘autocratic’ (to affirm its sovereignty and independence from the former Turco-Mongol overlords) was the Orthodox Eastern Christian faith. The Tzars saw themselves as heirs to the Byzantine Roman Emperors and protectors of medieval Greek Civilization. Moscow was the second Constantinople and as such the Third Rome. In that capacity, the Russian State challenged the Holy Roman (German) Empire and claimed a leading role in European affairs as well as in West Asia but the decentralised hierarchy of Eastern Christianity led the Russian state to acknowledge the autocephalous legitimacy of the Greek, Georgian, Armenian, Bulgarian, Serbian, Syrian, Assyrian and other patriarchates. It also extended tolerance to religious minorities as an effect of its ethnic pluralism while it drew ideas and practices from the Netherlands, Germany, Italy, England, Sweden and Persia. In the 18th century, the Russian elites welcomed French Enlightenment before a religious-nationalist backlash led to its official condemnation following the failed Decembrist coup. In the 19th century, Danilevsky enunciated a comprehensive pan-Slavist Eurasian thesis[vii] which had a far-reaching influence on his contemporaries and on some notable Soviet intellectuals.
It was however after the fall of the Romanov Empire that the Eurasian doctrine was fully defined by Anna Akhmatova’s son Lev Gumilev who essentially summed up elements of a continentally autochthonous and syncretistic Russian civilizational theory[viii] occasionally alluded to by Pushkin, Gogol, Tyuchev, Tolstoy and other great writers and artists while expurgating it from the Christian religious legacy. While Soviet Communism brought a radical break with the Christian, spiritual and monarchical traditions it also harked back to some atavistic memories of slav collectivism and orthodox anti-liberalism. In the early years of Bolshevik rule, some of its elite dreamed of a fusion between the ideal of the ‘Communist Man’ and the Buddhist concept of the Bodhisattwa as known in Mongolia and Tibet, viewed by those Eurasianists as an enlightened superman[ix]. Arnold Toynbee has a point when he argues that the conversion of the Russian Empire into the USSR protected the Eurasian landmass from being sucked into the liberal western orbit [x].
After the dissolution of the Soviet Union and the correlative economic and political eclipse of Russia, a ‘neo-Eurasianist’ doctrine has evolved in Russia under the leadership of nationalist intellectuals and economists such as Alexander Prokhanov, Alexander Dugin and Sergey Glaziev in the Izborsk Club and has become at least one of the sources of inspiration of the Federal State. Under the joint impulsion of the Russian Federation and of the ex-Soviet republics of Kazakhstan and Belarus, the Eurasian Economic Union has taken shape and has expanded to other Central Asian and Caucasian states. It is an economic counterpart to the Collective Security Treaty Organization which provides military coordination between most of those countries for the common defence. Thus a structure to protect the ‘Heartland’ is newly in place.
The Role of China, Iran, and India
Mackinder regarded the Far East, including the Chinese Qing Empire as a part of the periphery, perhaps because being a white supremacist like most westerners of his time he did not foresee the ‘yellow’ nations playing a powerful role on a level of equality with the then-ruling Europeans and North Americans. In the prior two centuries, the Middle Kingdom had lost much of its western and northern tributary lands to expanding Russia and it exercised only nominal suzerainty over Tibet. Indeed since more than two millennia, China had been regularly invaded by western nomadic conquerors which the famed Great Wall was erected to keep out. However other observers had predicted that if the Celestial Empire ever regained its clout it would again seek to expand into its erstwhile dependencies both in Indochina and towards the west.
The Maoist takeover of Eastern Turkestan renamed Xinjiang (the new territory) in 1949 and the reassertion of control over Tibet in the following year (Tibet had unilaterally declared its independence in 1912) fulfilled those age-old claims and paved the way for the pursuit of further ambitions. Since 2013 at least the Chinese doctrine for economic expansion has been articulated around the well known historical narrative of the transcontinental and maritime silk roads whereby Beijing has affirmed its manifest destiny as a Eurasian and oceanic power. In a way, China picked up the Russian Razvitie project[xi] for the comprehensive development of Eurasia and Siberia along both east-west (from the Netherlands to Korea) and north-south (from Norway to Iran) axes, hitherto hampered by the Kremlin’s economic difficulties and the US imposed sanctions. China also joined Russia’s plan to develop the Arctic sea route as a shortcut from the Far East to Europe and gave a new lease of life to the prospects for transcontinental cooperative development.
So far in Central Asia, Siberia and the Arctic ocean the PRC’s success hinges on Russia’s cooperation whereas in the China Sea and the Indian Ocean the Chinese merchant fleet and navy must deal with a powerful American military presence seconded by a chain of regional allies, stretching from Japan in the north to Australia in the south and potentially India to the west.
So China and Russia are for now tied by common interests in the Eurasian continent and by a mutual need for protection from the hostile Anglo- centric powers. Their competing claims in the heartland are however not easy to reconcile in the long term and their respective attitudes to India and Vietnam, for example, evince their divergences. Beijing takes an unyielding revisionist position vis-a-vis these two countries and aggressively lays claim to some bordering territories they hold (for India certain areas of the Himalayas and the Spratly and Paracel islands for Vietnam). Russia, on the other hand, maintains close relations with New Delhi and Hanoi and does not support China’s claims which create misgiving among all her neighbours and impede Asian economic and strategic integration.
India so far has remained on the fence of the Eurasian convergence project as it fears the prospect of the PRC’s hegemony for which the Shanghai Cooperation organization paves the way. The latest border clashes between the Chinese and Indian armies in Ladakh in June 2020 have elbowed New Delhi further towards the US- sponsored Indo-Pacific Quad quasi-alliance.
Another traditional pivot power is Iran which was bitterly disputed between the British in the south and the Russians in the north for much of the 19th and early 20th centuries. Since the Islamic Revolution Tehran has formed strong economic and strategic relations with the Kremlin while developing extensive economic links with China and retaining its traditional cultural and trading bonds with India. The prolonged American attempts to force Iran back into the ‘rimland’ league have failed and the military occupation of Iraq and Afghanistan on both sides of the country has resulted in costly failures for the US armed forces.
An alternative to aligning with the Heartland Sino-Russian compact or with the Anglo-Saxon- led rimland coalition has been proposed by India in the form of a ‘neutral’ Indian Ocean Rim Association (IORA) but in binary world order (which reflects the anthropological mindset) third options are generally neglected and its very name seems to condemn IORA as all of its member-states to fall prey to Sino-American rivalry which is at play in that wide area. The rising pressure applied by the USA on Iran has deeply damaged Indo-Iranian economic and diplomatic linkages which is a further sign of the ongoing regional realignment. While China becomes the Islamic Republic’s main partner New Delhi moves closer to Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Kuwait.
We have also briefly evoked another important rimland state, Turkey which has in the past repeatedly switched sides between the European continental and maritime powers (Britain, France, Germany) but has a dominant central Asian ethnolinguistic identity and is a traditional foe of Russia due in part to the contested Byzantine legacy.
However, geography and its logistical implications tie Turkey to its greater region around the Black Sea and the Mediterranean more than to the distant Atlantic powers. In Syria and towards Iran, Erdogan’s government has had to acknowledge the need to take into account the major neighbours to the north and east despite his personal contrary impulses.
From The Cold War to the New Great Game
We need not cover in detail the history of the years from 1945 to 1990 when the USSR disintegrated, putting an end to the bipolar world order that emerged after the war. Following half a century of nearly frozen conflict between the Anglo-American Atlantic Compact and the Soviet led-East, the abrupt decline of Russia left the USA in a globally hegemonic position but it coincided with the emergence of China as a factory to the world which ten years later joined the WTO and rapidly rose to economic prominence. From 1971, at the very same time that it gutted the Bretton Woods monetary system by abandoning the gold standard for the US currency, the Nixon presidency struck a near-alliance with China which effectively implied that the People’s Republic rejoined the ‘rimland’ league against the Soviet-dominated heartland.
In the nineties Beijing, thanks to China’s fast- growing power came into a position to bring the heart of Eurasia, formerly a part of the defunct USSR, under its influence and this project, as we have said earlier has been officialised as the Belt and Road initiative (BRI).
From the year 2000, China’s economic and strategic rise was accompanied by the revival of Russia’s geostrategic dynamism. The two continental-size countries were brought together by common interests, in order to protect themselves from an overbearing ‘sole superpower’. The 2007- 08 financial crisis and resulting recession durably weakened the western NATO bloc and accelerated the decay within the US political and economic system, exposed by the so-called ‘sub- prime’ debacle. From 2010 Chinese leaders felt that global predominance was within reach for the People’s Republic while Moscow could hope to rebuild its old commonwealth of the ‘near abroad’ from the borders of Poland and Romania to the boundaries of Korea and Iran. The complementari- ness between Chinese and Russian economies helped the Kremlin and the Forbidden City to paper over their old misgivings and differences for the sake of mutual benefit.
The vision of an economically consolidated Asia expanded to its western European peninsula as well as to its oriental outer belt (the Koreas, Japan, the ASEAN nations) and to its southern flank (India, Iran and the Arab crescent) began to take shape in the plans of both Moscow and Beijing.
A riposte from the United States and its close allies and tributaries was expected as the ‘incumbent’ superpower system could not let itself be dismantled politically and economically by the rival ‘Eurasian’ alliance. The attack on China, Russia and Iran, the three ‘poles’ of that triangle from Washington rose in intensity in the second decade of our century even as the entanglement between China and the USA grew in scope and complexity. Multiple complaints of cyberattacks were raised against Beijing and Moscow by American state agencies and corporations. The Russian Government for its part was accused of committing gross human rights violations and of assassinating certain Russian dissidents or exiles in the West and at home on the basis of unproven claims made by American and British Intelligence sources, resting on weak premises and often outlandish logic[xii]. As we know Iran was continuously under fire for its alleged nuclear ambitions and opposition to the positions and plans of the US and the latter’s regional allies Israel and the Arab monarchies[xiii]. The leading western powers have also openly intervened in border areas such as Georgia, Ukraine and Hong Kong in the name of supporting democracy and human rights. Whatever we think of the internal issues in those jurisdictions we cannot be blind to the fact that there is a coordinated strategy from the ‘Five Eyes’, the Anglo-Saxon alliance of the US and leading British Commonwealth states to weaken the real targets (Russia and China) in order to prevent them from going ahead with their long-term continental projects. On the larger canvas of Europe, the US and Britain have also undertaken a series of actions to prevent Europe from moving towards autonomous unity and from linking up with Russia and China economically and technologically. BREXIT, an intense campaign of attrition against German finance and industry (especially intended to prevent the completion of the Nordstream II project) and a constant propaganda barrage against Russia’s government and society are part of that multi- pronged project aimed at defeating the Eurasian consolidation scheme even at the cost of depleting further the already suffering western economy. In a way, the imperial American plan stole a page from Israel’s ‘Samson Option’ (risking self- destruction in order to annihilate the enemy) and put it into its global operational manual.
Who will win?
Moves and counter-moves are taking place across the global chessboard as we write. The Russian and Chinese agreements with Venezuela help the potentially richest country in Latin America to remain a bridgehead to the US backyard. While Russia has solidified its positions in Syria and Libya, China and Iran are preparing an ambitious 25 year economic and strategic partnership agreement[xiv]. Iran, China, and Russia are all active in Iraq. Beijing and Moscow both have developed various common interests with Turkey despite President Erdogan’s unpredictable double game between east and west. India and China are at loggerheads over long- standing border disputes but are also deeply involved with each other in matters of trade and investment although the economically asymmetrical relationship, howbeit mutually beneficial threatens to degenerate into all-out reciprocal hostility if it is not managed better and if India is pushed by China’s overbearing behaviour into a US- dominated Pacific alliance.
Geographically South Asia, Indochina and the Malayo-Indonesian islands are part of Mackinder’s oceanic ‘outer belt’, together with Australia and the Washington-London axis hoped that independent India could at some point be added to what was formerly the SEATO alliance under whose shadow ASEAN was created. Likewise in the Gulf and West Asia which Spykman described as the southern rim, western powers are militarily and economically entrenched, mainly in Saudi Arabia and the other Arab kingdoms and expect Iran, under the pressure of sanctions and threats of war, to shed at some point its anti-American, anti-Israeli stance and become once again an ally as it was until the 1979 Islamic revolution.
We have already seen that Europe and Africa are also contested territories where both the opposing blocs have major assets and interests. As a result, the principal continental nations of Europe as well as most African states tend to hedge their bets while balancing the influences of the respective powers as India itself is doing. A fading NATO, given a step-motherly treatment by the Trump administration is no longer holding the western bloc together. The French President Emmanuel Macron has said that it is ‘brain-dead’ and other nations keep their options open as they can no longer depend on American backing. Germany, traditionally the main NATO pillar, well aware that it is targeted by Washington for ‘downsizing’ refuses to raise its military budget to the 2% of GNP required by the White House and shows greater interest in the development of an ‘All European Army’. On the other hand, Poland and other Eastern states continue to rely on their alliance with the United States to keep Russian and German pressure under control. However few now fear that a military clash between the ‘heartland’ and ‘rimland’ power will take place on the European theatre, simply because the US is too far and cannot hope to win such a conflict without the full support and participation of its NATO members which is in doubt. The Western Pacific and the South Asian belt, somewhere between Iran and the South China Sea contain more flashpoints between inimical nations and are of greater interest to both the USA and its principal adversaries.
The key question which should take priority for American decision-makers is whether Russia and China can continue to remain on the same side in this planetary contest or whether China which Nixon and Kissinger saw as part of the ‘rimland’ as Mackinder and Spykman had, will eventually lose its Russian partner due to the Kremlin’s fear of becoming Beijing’s satellite. Donald Trump clearly seeks to bring Russia into the ‘Atlantic’ Camp in order to isolate China, reversing Kissinger’s anti-Soviet strategy which led the US to build up the PRC as a global industrial power. However the policy-making community in the US seems consumed by an aversion to Putinist Russia which makes such a rapprochement unlikely at best.
The globalist thinking dominant in the ruling circles is that China is a major economic engine of world economic integration whereas Russia is seen as a dogged opponent of this neo-liberal (and neo- conservative) project.
The British and the Americans in the first half of the 20th century wanted China to be a subsidiary ally of their ‘common’ empire and they would still like to find a way to tame the Chinese Communist Party as they have hoped since 1971. However, as the reality of western decline in the face of the PRC’s meteoric economic rise sinks in the urge to slay the Dragon is taking over the Anglo-American establishment and that new priority can only bring Beijing closer to Moscow. Mackinder and his disciples would have warned of the danger for the western alliance to lose both the heartland and the main power in the far-eastern rimland (China) which cannot be defeated without a major internal upheaval that might bring down the government. Likewise, Putin’s national policy doctrine is now institutionalized in Russia by the recent constitutional reform and it will be much harder for foreign forces to turn the country around as long as the majority of the people and the elites find their common interest in staying the generally ‘protective’ sovereign course.
The west is on a losing track as long as it is wedded to a form of capitalism less and less viable in the face of a worsening financial and structural crisis which pushes the US Government and others to adopt arbitrarily protectionistic measures, slap sanctions on ‘inconvenient’ nations and threaten or use extortion and naked force whenever possible.
Immanuel Wallerstein predicted that Russia and Europe were fated to come together by geography, history, culture, strategic convergence and economic complementarity[xv]. On the other hand, he saw China and the USA finding a modus vivendi as the two industrial and financial superpowers facing each other on opposite shores of the Pacific which is surrounded by the most dynamic and fast-growing countries of this century. Events of the last few years belie his forecast as the PRC and the USA engage in an increasingly bitter contest while an ideological iron curtain – or rather a NATO fence – still keeps the EU and the Russian Federation apart. India’s options are narrowing[xvi] and New Delhi’s ability to remain a ‘hinge’ power is in doubt as many of its experts and decision-makers are calling for alignment with the Anglo-Saxon led Indo-Pacific league. Yet India’s strategic ambivalence is a source of strength as it keeps opportunities open on all sides and protects the country from the risk of being dragged into a war for issues that are not of direct national concern. For one, India has little to lose in the South China Sea dispute, whatever its outcome which would damage only the contending coastal states.
At the dawn of the last century, the major European countries had joined opposing alliances in the belief that they would keep the peace and protect them from attacks. In fact, the system forced the escalation of a tragic incident in June 1914 into a continental five-year fratricidal massacre. Today Asia should beware of falling a victim to the new version of the Great Game.
*Come Carpentier de Gourdon is currently a consultant with India Foundation and also the Convener of the Editorial Board of the WORLD AFFAIRS JOURNAL. He is an associate of the International Institute for Social and Economic Studies (IISES), Vienna, Austria. Come Carpentier is also an author of various books, several articles, essays and papers.
- [i]The Geographical Pivot of Histoy (1904) and Democratic Ideas and the Politic of Reconstruction (1919), Halford Mackinder.
- [ii]Our Israelitish Heritage (1844), John Wilson and Israel in Britain (1890), Col. Garnier among other books.
- [iii]A History of The English Speaking People, (156-58) Sir Winston Churchill (Cassel)
- [iv]The Real Lincoln (2003), Thomas J Di Lorenzo.
- [v]The Melting Pot (1908), a play by Israel Zangwill. The concept seems to have first been applied to the USA by Hector St. John de Crevecoeur in the 19th century.
- [vi]Who Are We – The Challenge to America’s National Identity (2005) Samuel Huntington.
- [vii]Russia and Europe – A look at the Cultural and political Relations of the Slavic World to the Romano-German World (1895) Nikolay Danilevsky
- [viii]Ethnogenesis and The Biosphere of Earth (1978), Lev Gumilev
- [ix]A Study of History, Volume I (an abridgement of Volumes I-VI) 1998, Arnold Toynbee and DC Somerwell, (OUP).
- [x]Red Shambhala – Magic, prophesy and |Geopolitics in the Heart of Asia (2011) Andrei Znamenski (Quest Books).
- [xi]Razvitie development of the Eurasian Continent – An Integrated and Cooperative Project, Vladimir I Yakunin in, World Affairs, Autumn 2014, vol. 18, no. 3.
- [xii]Many of the charges raised against the Russian Government (Magnitsky, Litvinenko, Skripal, cyber-interference in elections, the downing of Flight MH-17.et al.)mainly by the US and the British States in the last few years remain unproven, rest on undisclosed and anonymous sources and are worded as ‘highly likely’ and as reflecting an alleged ‘high degree of confidence’ of the accusing Intelligence agencies. They clearly dovetail the wider political and strategic objectives of the Anglo-Saxon powers and have been received with widespread scepticism, especially outside the western alliance. It is difficult not to see them as elements of an ongoing propaganda war designed to prevent a dreaded the rapprochement between the old adversaries (the western and eastern blocs).
- [xiii]One of many reports of an intense campaign of sabotage, bombings and assassinations in Iran: https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2020/jul/12/sabotage-sanctions-and-the-bullying-of-iran-is-bound-to-backfire-on-the-west?CMP=share_btn_tw and in businessinsider.in ‘Israel keeps blowing up military targets in Iran hoping to force a confrontation before Trump could be forced out in November, sources say’ Mitch Prothero, July 16,2020.
- [xiv]On China-Iran agreement https://www.scmp.com/news/world/middle-east/article/3091913/iran-insists-potential-deal-china-not-secret?utm_source=Twitter&utm_medium=share_widget&utm_campaign=3091913
- [xv]Alternatives: The US Confronts The World (2004) and World Systems Analysis – An Introduction (2004), Immanuel Wallerstein.
- [xvi]https://russiancouncil.ru/en/analytics-and-comments/analytics/heartland-reunion-geopolitical-chimera-or-historical-chance/ by Andrey Kortunov.