What we may be witnessing is not just the end of the Cold War, or the passing of a particular period of postwar history, but the end of history as such: that is, the end point of mankind’s ideological evolution and the universalization of Western liberal democracy as the final form of human government.
— Francis Fukuyama, “The End of History?”, The National Interest, No.16 (Summer 1989)
Hmmm… so much for predictions.
The Russians have surely put the cat amongst the pigeons and put paid to “the end of history” nonsense, big time! All our traditional yardsticks, the way we evaluate events and ideas in this post-Soviet space, have we to jettison them all because of Russia’s ‘Special Military Operation’ (SMO) in the Ukraine? Even the much-vaunted contest between left and right, a contest all of us have grown up within, has been cut adrift from its moorings, but these alone don’t identify the key elements of the transition to a neoliberal planet, however brief its reign may be. But of course, it’s not just the Russian SMO, it’s the entire trajectory of events since the US’s regime change operation that overthrew the Soviet Union in 1989, that have been leading up to this denouement. What is depressing, is that so few in the West recognise it for what it is, and of course this is intimately connected to what has happened to politics in the West. Or rather the disappearance of politics, which in its way, explains in part, why the left has been rendered impotent. If you like the SMO is a wakeup call as it signals a new epoch in the making for both left and right to chew on. So far however, the left has shown that it’s not up to the task.