A Small World

It is interesting to notice by reading some of the main global media vehicles that the world is getting really small. Taking a brief look at the opinion pages of papers as China Daily, The Economist, Hurriyet Daily News, the New York Times and the Guardian we can notice that most of their articles are directed to similar stories.

During the first days of this week – and probably also the previous ones – the main theme discussed was the dialogue between the US, Europe, China and Iran. It was curious to see that editors and contributors were not commenting the possibility of a military intervention or the debates at the UN Security Council but the possible gains and losses that their economical ties could bring.

As the president of the European Council Van Rompuy wrote for the China Daily, “the world is going through rapid changes and global readjustments caused by globalization and increased inter-connectedness between countries and peoples (…) [bringing] us closer together”. The political scientist Garton Ash made this statement more clear by affirming in The Guardian that even the Chinese dynasty is getting “global” as their vice-president (and future leader) Xi Jinping has a daughter studying at the Harvard University while his sister is living in Canada.

Even so the world didn’t forget the Iranian question. Nevertheless, the talks seem to be going in the same gains and losses direction. Dennis Ross, a former assistant to Barack Obama for the Middle East, wrote for The New York Times that “Iran is ready to talk”.

As he said, Ahmadinejad didn’t change his mind about the “western danger”. In the contrary, he is afraid of the losses that getting far from the west may cause to his country’s economy. As Ross said, “Iran cannot do business with or obtain credit from any reputable international bank, (…) American penalties (…) have helped trigger an enormous currency devaluation” and Bashar Al-Assad, his last political partner, is failing as the Arab Spring advances.

The world is getting smaller and it is not due to a raising global culture. Even demanding similar life quality standards, each citizen of the world still have its own religion, personal habits and family background. Still, international trade and David Ricardo’s comparative advantage theory united people.

While a German businessman uses his Chinese umbrella in London, a Russian housewife is watching a Brazilian soap opera in a US-made television. As Thomas Friedman analyzed in his bestselling “The World is Flat”, all the nations became so dependant in international trade that closing borders started looking like the worst thing a government could plan.

Wars became really expensive not only because of arms costs but mainly due to the losses that a break in international trade may cause. Peace began to be seen as a profitable policy.

That’s why “Iran is ready to talk”. That’s why Xi Jinping is visiting the United States. And, even more, that’s why the future global leaders will need to find different solutions other than militarist policies.