Every nation on our planet has limitations dictated to a country due to its geography. Geography informs the political realities and what is possible and not possible for nations located in specific geographical locations; that is why there is the social science of geopolitics.
Geopolitics is the understanding of what nations can and cannot do and why certain nations have different foreign policies due to the weaknesses or strengths of their geographies.
An easy example of this is the flat plane lands in Eastern Europe and in Russia, which makes Russian policymakers very anxious due to the potential threat either imagined or possible from other foreign powers.
From 1812 to 1945, Russia, on average, was invaded once every 32 years, according to the author and writer Tim Marshall of the book Prisoners of Geography.
In this piece of writing, I will be discussing the geopolitics of Spain, which significantly limits the country’s ability to be a significant regional power even though historically, Spain was once called the Empire where the sun never sets, but this was during the rule of Philip II of Spain (1556 to 1588).
The Spanish also had the advantage of being one of the first colonisers of South America, and it was access to gold and silver mines which helped to power up Spain’s ability to be a significant power in Europe.
Modern-day Spain, just like the old Spanish kingdom in terms of the geography of the 16th century, is surrounded by mountains in northern Spain, the Pyrenees mountains that provide natural defences for Spain from France and any other would-be invaded from northern Spain stretching across its northern coastline is predominantly mountainous.
This also means disadvantages because there are not enough seaports to provide shipping ports and trade links in the northern and southern hemispheres and other trade routes with the rest of the world.
This same geographical weakness also stretches across the eastern Spanish borders to Gibraltar again; this provides defensive barriers to Spain, but it keeps the Spanish trapped in the local geography.
Finally, we have southern Spain, which has Gibraltar, which is a natural port for shipping and is a natural waterway and shipping lane for any international shipping going from the Mediterranean and the rest of the world; it is one of the world’s most important shipping lanes.
Unfortunately for the Spanish, Gibraltar has been controlled by the British since 1704, during the War of the Spanish Succession, which lasted from 1701 to 1713.
Sir George Rooke captured Gibraltar for the British, and Spain formally ceded it to Britain under the terms of the Treaty of Utrecht in 1713.
The Spanish, until present times, wanted the return of Gibraltar to Spain. Still, as long as the people of Gibraltar wished to be part of Britain in 2002, in a referendum, the territory voted to remain part of Great Britain.
This territorial dispute will continue to be a hot topic between the Spanish and British governments because it is geopolitically highly valuable to Spain and the British due to the importance of its geopolitical positioning.
Furthermore, Spain’s southern and eastern border is also most vulnerable to invasion due to having flatlands and sharing a border with Portugal. The British have maintained a strong relationship with Portugal before even Britain was united in the act of Union with Scotland in 1707.
The political and military alliance with Portugal goes back to the Hundred Years War from 1337 to 1443, starting in 1773 when England was ruled by King Edward III of England, who reigned from 1327 to 1377.
The reason for the alliance was that the French supported the kingdom of Castile, which was fighting against the English in the late Edwardian phase of the Hundred Years War.
The English lacked allies to fight in the Spanish peninsula and allied with the Portuguese to avoid being blocked out of that peninsula.
The British and Portuguese alliance has been ongoing until the present day. The Portuguese played a crucial part in the English liberation of Spain during the Peninsular War (1804 to 1814) during the Napoleonic wars from 1799 to 1815.
The birthplace of contemporary and modern nationalism is France, which originated from the legacy of the French Revolution in 1789 and is responsible for revolutions within the European continent, particularly in 1848.
The revolutions of 1848 were a series of republican revolts against European monarchies, beginning in Sicily and spreading to France, Germany, Italy, and the Austrian Empire. They all ended in failure and repression and were followed by widespread disillusionment among liberals.
Furthermore, the impact of the French Revolutionary Wars from 1793 to 1799 and the French Napoleonic Wars from 1799 to 1815 witnessed the French attempt to conquer the European continent and, through this process, exported French nationalism and French military technology to the rest of Europe.
(Nationalism is an ideology based on the premise that the individual’s loyalty and devotion to the nation-state surpass other individual or group interests.)
The development of nationalism is highly complex in the European context. Nationalism has three origins and its process of development.
The first is the legacy of the Greeks and the historian Herodotus, who spent his entire life working on just one project: an account of the origins and execution of the Greco-Persian Wars (499–479 B.C.) that he called “The Histories.”
(It’s from Herodotus’ work that we get the modern meaning of the word “history.”)
The Greeks created a sense of difference between the Persian and Greek people, and separate identities would be made from this belief of difference. Furthermore, the Greeks established the core DNA of nationalism.
Nationalism must be learned; people require knowledge of their geographical history to identify with the nation’s story, which is something that the French Revolution strongly promoted.
What constituted French or France in the 18th century was very much focused on France’s cities.
In contrast, its rural communities did not see themselves as French, merely identifying with the regions and having no educational or little educational understanding of French history and its standing in Europe.
This is why to be a nationalist and for nationalism to work, a person or people must have a particular view on what it means to be French, English and German.
However, Nationalism got a terrible reputation due to the actions of Germany and its people’s brand of nationalism; in the 20th century, nationalism greatly deteriorated the general attitude toward nationalism.
The author and writer Douglas Murray states that English nationalism, British nationalism, and French nationalism are not a problem.
The reason why politicians are scared of nationalism is German nationalism, which was the real problem.
For people reading this need a brief overview, it was German nationalism that caused the two world wars in the 20th century and the deaths of nearly a hundred million people.
During this period, the Romans established nationalism, being the foreigners and the barbarians not having Roman civilisation. Due to this concept, a key component of nationalism is the othering of other societies and the promotion of their Roman identities.
For the Romans, whether a person was from North Africa, the Mediterranean, or Arabia did not matter.
All that mattered was loyalty to the Empire and cultural assimilation into what it meant to be Roman. Roman leaders came from all corners of his empire, and it was not divided along racial lines, ethnic groups, or other identifications, which we consider today.
The United States’ identity is very much drawn upon racial discrimination, and race plays a predominant role in American politics and its psyche as a nation.
In contrast, it is the economic divide between the working, middle, and upper classes in countries like Britain.
The French see people who live in France and who are French citizens as purely French; they cannot be African or any other ethnic group because, due to the legacy of the French Revolution of 1789, everybody living in France is French.
The reason the French did this was that during the Revolutionary Wars and Napoleonic wars, there was no sense in the nonurban areas of what it meant to be French, so to make the French French, the government made it so the people in France had to be French which included stamping out any remaining regional and ethnic differences within France after 1789.
The earliest form of nationalism originates from Western Europe, notably the King of England, which has existed from 927 until the present day; with this nation also being an island nation, a sense of Englishness could be developed from the sense of otherness of the European continent.
This was developed due to the lack of communication technology before the development of the radio, Telegraph, and other faster forms of communication in the 19th century.
This allowed the English people to develop more independently from other influences throughout the European continent, making them culturally different from their European counterparts.
This difference and separation enabled the creation of the English Commons, one of the rare legal systems that developed separately from Roman law that dominated the European continent until this day.
In the 21st century, only two legal traditions are in use: the old Roman imperial law or Roman law and English common law, which both develop separately and independently of one another.
So now we’ve established the creation of separate cultural and legal traditions that helped to develop a sense of nationalism; the next part of nationalism generated within the kingdom of England was in the late 13th century when King Edward I of England ruled that country.
During his rule from 1272 to 1307, Edward I’s conquest of Wales took place between 1277 and 1283. It is sometimes referred to as the Edwardian Conquest of Wales to distinguish it from the earlier Norman Conquest of Wales.
The English flag of St George was used throughout King Edward I’s rule and continues to be used until contemporary times. This symbol highlights the emergence of an English identity, a form of Proto-nationalism that will continue to be developed throughout the late 13th until the 15th century.
Further compounding the creation of English nationalism was that from 1277 until 1453, England was at constant war with France, Scotland, and other neighbouring kingdoms, dukedoms, and principalities within Western Europe.
The Hundred Years’ War between 1337 and 1453 also helped establish a separate cultural and physical identity not linked to France’s predominant culture and influence, the most powerful kingdom throughout the mediaeval ages.
What is French Nationalism
Modern nationalism’s birthplace is in France because the French created the concept of a nation-state that became connected to an ethnic group rather than building massive empires. A nation could sustain itself by supporting one ethnicity in one region.
This concept became functional and practical throughout different regions around the globe, enabling nations to hold themselves together by building a collective identity in contrast to empires that are multi-ethnic and prone to collapse either internally or externally.
The French created a stable system to make a nation function and develop reasons to keep the state alive.
Since 2020, several African coups have originated from primary, former French colonial territories.
When looking back at the French and British colonial empires, we can see two different strategies, implementation methods, and goals of both empires.
The British opted for economic control and seizing territories and trade routes that benefited British trade and the acquisition of local wealth and resources.
For the British, their imperial project was run like a corporation to increase their balance books. In contrast, the French imperial project was more ego-driven and focused on capturing big swathes of territory in the African continent.
The French vs. British Imperial Project
As written above, we can see that the British were a business-driven empire where the French wanted to be in charge of the whole political system.
This meant, in turn, that when the French left Africa and gave up its colonial empire in the 1950s and 1960s, the French hollowed out these nations’ political systems.
We fast forward to the present day; the French have packed their bags and left their old colonial empire primed for coup d’états and vulnerable places like Chad, Niger and other former French colonies vulnerable to the influence of China and the Russian Federation.
English Common Law vs. Roman Law
One of the reasons former British colonial territories tended to be far more successful than their other European counterparts was the two dominant legal traditions, Roman common law, favoured primarily on the mainland of Europe.
It was more of an imperial-based legal system where the sovereign made the laws and used the ultimate power of imperial power to dictate their citizens’ laws, beliefs, and ways of life.
Roman law was a microcosm of the wider European political environment controlling people’s lives.
The European monarchies favoured Roman law due to it is the legitimisation of centralising their kingdoms and being dictatorial in the beliefs and thoughts of their citizens.
In contrast, English common law is made by the people, for the people can only implement it with their consent.
This is why former British colonial territories were far better off than their French counterparts; French laws are dictatorial, and English laws are based upon consent.
This can be demonstrated by the famous quote from one of England’s famous Queens, Queen Elizabeth I of England, who ruled from 1558 to 1603, stating, ‘I have no desire to make windows into men’s souls.’
Queen Elizabeth uses the expression of not making “windows into men’s souls” to describe her unwillingness to persecute people based on their interpretation of texts, as it is their soulful way of perceiving things.
She does not see nor want to control what goes on in the minds and souls of her subjects.
The Future of France and Africa
As these coups run their course, French involvement could take on a number of different forms.
That makes this so interesting: the French are a wildcard, and their involvement comes down to how they see themselves.
This is also partly driven due to former French colonial territory apart from places like Niger that have uranium or other valuable minerals, which otherwise are worthless geopolitically and economically for the French.
That’s why seeing what the French will do is so unpredictable. Unlike their English counterparts, they have no scruples and are not squeamish when it comes to assassination, bribery and making alliances with strongmen to further the perceived French national interest.
All nations expand, die or prosper due to the environment of their geography, which we call geopolitics, which affects how policies are made and what countries can practically accomplish.
For instance, if a nation historically did not have access to coal and steel, it would not industrialise.
For England and the greater United Kingdom, made up of England, Scotland and Wales, its geography does not give a fantastic advantage that enabled the British to build the world’s largest empire ever or will ever be.
For the British Isles, half of its landmarks are mountainous, particularly in Wales and Scotland, which is why, even to this day, they have lower populations than different parts of the United Kingdom.
This is one reason why federalism will never work for the English constitution because for that system to work, England must be suppressed, according to the historian David Starkey.
This is all related to geopolitics because the much smaller population in England and Wales is because, in the case of Wales, it is much smaller than England, and both kingdom and principality are mountainous, making it much harder for agriculture.
It was not until the Industrial Revolution that the population in England reached over 6 million, and it was not until the Napoleonic wars that inflation went into two digits.
The demographic change was due to the Industrial Revolution, and the agricultural revolution of the 18th century meant that England could sustain a much larger population.
The Politics of Great Britain
When reading this, you may wonder why I write about England and Great Britain as two different entities; the truth of the matter is that the English constitution is not a union of nations but a union of Parliament with the act of Union in 1707.
The Scottish were given higher representation in Parliament and maintained a separate legal system based on Roman law and not English common law, an education system, a Presbyterian church and, in contrast, the Anglian Church.
This was because the Scottish nobility failed in building their colonial empire and needed England to pay off their debts.
The second reason was that the Scottish population in 1707 was around 400,000, compared to 6 million people in England.
The final reason the English were so interested in pursuing a Parliamentary union with the Scots was because, historically, Scotland was the back door and invasion route into England.
The Scots had invaded northern England before the Norman conquest in 1066 and historically allied with the French to force England to spread its resources by fighting two-front wars with France and Scotland.
On a final note, people within and without Great Britain often forget that to the rest of the world, the British are British.
Still, within the union itself, its peoples are Welsh, Northern Irish, Scottish and English, with separate histories, languages and cultures.
There is a political reckoning that needs to happen for the regions of Great Britain to understand their place within the British constitution and where they stand culturally.
The people of Scotland have a choice regarding how much they wish to be English or Scottish, which is a significant factor in the Scottish National party’s and the fight for independence for the Scots.
According to the geopolitical analyst Peter Zilhen, they have a choice to make regarding the cultural union within Great Britain.
British Geopolitical Advantage
Within the island of Great Britain, you are never more than 70 miles away from the coast; this has historically meant that England had access to capable seamen that could be used for international trade and the defence of England.
Historically, from the Norman conquest in 1066 until the rain of England’s 1st Tudor king, King Henry VII, from 1485 to 1509, the English navy only existed as a means of transportation between the kings of England and their much richer continental holdings in France.
What this meant geopolitically was that English kings, until the rain of the Tudor dynasty from 1485 to 1603, were not interested in developing their navies to defend the English coast, which enabled during the Hundred Years War from 1337 to 1453 French armies to attack and invade English coastal cities and towns at least 50 times.
The Hundred Years War and England’s defeat in the conflict in 1453 meant that England became untethered to the European continent, and it took until the rain of King Charles II of England and the brief English Commonwealth in the 17th century for England to focus on naval power.
British policies focused on the high seas provided a quantitative and qualitative advantage for British power. For instance, Louis XIV of France’s 400,000-man army could not invade England due to security provided by the English navy that was not even 80,000 strong.
Furthermore, English sailors could fire three shots per Spanish or French gunners, effectively doubling English firepower.
As continental armies got bigger, reaching the Hundred thousand mark in the 16th century, England, with a much smaller population than France at over 25 million, was larger than Russia in the early 19th century and had the largest population in the European continent.
The British were not able to compete on the European continent or willing to invest in its land-based military due to the army being seen as a force of tyranny that suppressed the freedom of the English people, which was used by Charles I, Oliver Cromwell, King Charles II and King James II to suppress English freedoms.
What this meant for the British was that rather than pursuing continental holdings, the English opted for colonialism, control of the world seas and trade routes to enrich themselves.
The wealth extracted from England’s colonial empire could fund the enlargement of the British Navy and keep France contained to the European and African continent in the 19th century.
The English in the 18th century successfully removed French influence from North America, the Indian subcontinent and the Far East; this was possible because England was primarily a maritime power; in contrast, France was tied to the European continent.
Throughout the 18th century, France spent 45 years at War and had to maintain an army of over 400,000 and, during peacetime, at least 150,000, making France priority on maintaining its army at the expense of naval development.
The Industrial Revolution
The home of Industrial Revolution began in Great Britain in 1769 with the implementation of the first steam engine.
Britain would create wealth through the technology of steam and the development of manufacturing.
Historically, economics was the process of household management, according to philosopher Aristotle or the administration of limited and finite resources.
What the British could do with the Industrial Revolution was to create continuous wealth, which meant it could improve its prosperity and had the cash to finance the enemies of France, building its empire and using geographical and industrial advantages.
The British Empire was able to do this because the Empire reached the height of its power in the late 18th and early 19th century due to this process happening during the Industrial Revolution.
In contrast, the Spanish Empire built its empire from the 16th to the early 18th century with gold and silver from South America.
The Spanish bought the goods and services it needed by giving precious metals in exchange, which destroyed the European gold and silver markets and led to high inflation, and that’s how the Spanish destroyed their economy.
In contrast, the British Empire began to rise to power in the 18th century in the middle of the Industrial Revolution, which meant that its economy was based upon liberalism, free markets and the creation of wealth, which was the first time this happened in human history where peoples became more prosperous.
Since the Industrial Revolution, life expectancy, technological advancement and the ability to generate wealth through specialisation enabled the British Empire to be the first nation to industrialise, which was a massive quantitative and qualitative advantage.
Economically and in some cases literally, the British were bringing guns to a knife fight.
The British foreign policy from the 17th century until the end of World War II in 1945 CE was to prevent any nation from unifying the continent of Europe.
When the United could destroy the British Isles due to being unable to stand against Europe as a United political entity, this foreign policy is nothing new to Europeans since the 16th century.
With different kingdoms, the fighting wars to prevent any kingdoms from unifying or destroying the balance of power in continental Europe.
The first two great nations who battled it out over control of Europe were Charles V of the Holy Roman Empire, king of United Spain, Duke of Burgundy, which incorporated the Netherlands, and ruler of southern Italy, including Sicily, who rained from 1516 to 1556.
His opponent was Francis I of France, who ruled from 1515 CE to 1547 CE.
They thought the Italian Wars, also known as the Habsburg–Valois Wars, were a series of conflicts fought between 1494 and 1559, mainly in the Italian peninsula, but later expanding into Flanders, the Rhineland, and the Mediterranean Sea.
This would be a trend in Europe unbroken until the end of the Napolean Wars, 1799 CE to 1815 CE. For the British, since the Battle of the Solent in 1545 CE, the French number 30,000 attempted to invade Tudor England.
The last time the English crown was until 1688 CE when they pursued an aggressive policy against one of the stronger nations of Europe.
The event, the Glorious Revolution of 1688 CE to 1689 CE, is significant for two reasons. The first was that it led to banking reform, with The Bank of England being founded as a private bank in 1694 to act as a banker to the Government.
And the brief union with the Dutch Republic with the invasion of William of Orange, who became William III of England and became co-monarch with Mary II of England.
This event galvanised the British nation and placed that country on the path of empire and war in Europe, mainly with France. From 1688 CE, Britain would fight the Nine Years’ War 1688 CE to 1697 CE, the War of the Spanish Succession 1701 CE to 1714 CE, and the Seven Years’ War 1756 CE to 1763 CE was a global conflict that involved most of the European and American Revolutionary War 1775 CE to 1783 CE.
The English were determined to fight France to prevent the French from dominating the European continent, and fighting the French was seen as Britain’s national destiny, likened to the motivation of the First Hundred Years War.
Britain’s first Prime Minister, Robert Walpole, who was in office for 20 years and 315 days from 3 April 1721 until 11 February 1742, lost position due to his unwillingness to fight a war against France and lost the support of the House of Commons.
France, throughout the 18th century, spent 45 years out of 100 fighting wars in Europe and around the globe, with the British being a big funder of the enemies of France.
For this narrative of history to make any sense to a reader unfamiliar with the history of England, it is first necessary to set the stage for the titanic events that would lead to the birth of the British Empire and its hegemony in the 19th century.
To begin with, we must first look at the geographical positioning of England in Western and Northern Europe, with England and France approximately 23 miles or 37 km apart across the English Channel.
According to the geopolitical analysis Peter Zeihen, half of the United Kingdom, England, Wales, and Scotland, more than half of the land is useless due to the mountainous terrain, mainly in Scotland and Wales.
During the medieval ages, this was even worse, with East Anglia’s primary swamplands and the north of England being disconnected due to swamps and rivers, which made that piece of territory hard to control from Winchester and London during the period of England’s Anglo-Saxon and first Norman came within the Conqueror.
This history is significant to understand the context of how England, predominantly England, transformed itself from a backwater into a power at its height in 1922.
It was the largest empire the world had ever seen, covering around a quarter of Earth’s land surface and ruling over 458 million people.
The Historian David Starkey stated that “the British Empire is just England with add-ons.” The statement may be inflammatory for the Scots and the Welsh, but this statement has a significant truth.
Certain nations are destined to fail due to the limitations of geography.
This argument is supported by thinkers such as Tim Marshall, author of Prisoners of Geography, and Peter Zeilhen, author of The End of the World is Just the Beginning, who use geography to demonstrate the limitations and advantages of different global powers.
The geographical limitations of Scotland and Wales led to them being eventually conquered or incorporated peacefully, in the case of the Scots with the Act of Union 1707 and the Edwardian conquest of Wales in the late 13th century.
The origin development of the English Empire was born from the failure, conquest, and dynastic politics, starting with the Anglo-Saxon/Old English being conquered by William the Conqueror in 1066 CE.
Unfortunately, modern-day people often forget that William II, Duke of Normandy, had a substantial holding in northern France. Before his invasion in 1066 CE, three years previously, he conquered Maine, which lands were controlled by Angevin Count of Anjou.
It’s also necessary to point out that in northern France, the Dukes of Normandy and Dukes of Brittany, Counts of Anjou and Flanders, and finally, the kings of the Franks were engaged in campaigns of dominance to gain control or hegemony of northern France.
For this history, the most important fact is that from the 1050s CE, starting with King Henri I, King of the Franks, and Duke William II of Normandy, until the ending of the Hundred Years War in 1453 CE, the kingdoms or accurately the dynasties of Normandy-Plantagenet ruled England from 1066 VCE to 1485 CE and the Capet Kings and Valois Kings of France fought wars over control various touches and even the crown of France for over 500 years.
The English crown had, multiple times, controlled more lands in France than the King of France.
Still, over a series of conflicts and the defeat of the English during the Hundred Years War from 1337 CE to 1453 CE, the English were reduced to control in the city and port of Calais possession from 1347 CE to 1558 CE.
Ukrainian government have made a bold move by attacking Belgorod using paramilitary forces for a plausible deniability situation Belgorod Governor Vyacheslav Gladkov said one civilian had been killed “at the hands of the Ukrainian armed forces”.
This also stated that ‘counterterrorist operations were underway’; this shows a game of plausible deniability between the Kremlin-backed paramilitary fortresses of the Wagoner Group and forces supported by Ukraine.
In their war effort against the Russian invasion since 2014 or 2022, pending on you the reader’s point of view, Ukrainians require the Ukrainian government to avoid direct engagement in Russia’s mainland to avoid positions of Ukrainians being viewed as aggressors.
Also, there is a danger that if Ukrainians push the Russians towards the thin ice, it may make Russia desperate and begin launching nuclear weapons.
Alternatively, Western nations supporting Ukraine may stop sending equipment. Without the United States and its allies, Ukrainians would not be able to wage this war for the defence of their country.
In many ways, the Ukraine war is a proxy war between the Russian Federation and the Allied system created by the United States in the post-World War II 1945 and post-Cold War after the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989.
Guerrilla Movements in Russia
The Ukrainian government, led by President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, has denied any involvement by the Ukrainian military in operations of a military nature inside the Russian Federation.
This is most likely misinformation because Ukrainians are in a war of survival and will use any necessary means to defend the nation.
The Ukrainian government claimed that the soldiers attacking Belgorod from two paramilitary organisations primarily of Russian origin supported Ukraine; these groups are called the Liberty for Russian Legion and the Russian Volunteer Corps.
Russian volunteer courts are led by the right-wing extremist Denis Kapustin who opposes the Putin regime and is currently taking several photos of being in the Belgorod region, and the liberty for the Russian Legion has claimed liberating Kozinka.
It’s crucial that you, the reader, know that the territories were taken by Ukrainian-backed paramilitary organisations that the Ukrainian government is naturally supplying them; it is essential to understand that the lands taken are small and close to Ukraine.
It’s essential to be aware of the expectations and probabilities of what the Ukrainian and Russian armies can do.
Ukrainians are hurting the Russians badly, but this war is far from over. The psychological impact of Ukrainian forces entering Russian territory would primarily make the Russian public take this war more seriously, and it will be severely embarrassing to the government of Vladimir Putin in Russia.
There is also the possibility of Ukrainians making these attacks to divert Russian forces from the next Ukrainian offensive and making the Russians spread their forces over a larger area to protect Russian territory.
Ukrainian and Russian Ethics Group
When understanding the ethnicity of Ukrainians and Russians, a robust historical comparison can be found between the Germans and Austrians.
Both of these cultural groups are German, with Germany historically being made up of different ethnic groups that overall identify as German.
During the unification of Germany in the late 18th and 19th centuries, this new state or nation would be united by two countries, either the Kingdom of Prussia or under the Habsburg dynasty ruling from Austria; ultimately, Germany was created by the Prussian militarised state.
Austria never became part of Germany because it was part of the Herzberg Empire, and the Germans, under the leadership of Otto von Bismarck from 1862 to 1890, being politically active, aimed to create a lesser Germany that did not incorporate the Austrian people.
This process is reversed in Russia because Ukraine was originally part of the Russian Empire and the Russian cultural group.
Still, unfortunately, since the collapse of the Soviet Union with the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989 and the final collapse of the Soviet government in 1990, the old puppet states won their independence.
What we are seeing now in the Ukraine and Russian war from 2014 present day is, in some ways, the equivalent of the American wars of independence from 1775 until 1783, where the Ukrainians during this conflict are developing and have developed particularly Western Ukraine an independent identity not connected to the Russian state.
This kind of historical development is familiar, and a straightforward example is that the Americans, Australians, South Africans, and Canadians do not identify themselves as English.
They share many historical roots, including culture and English political history and development, because England, since it was founded in 927, has never had an absolute monarchy, with the historian David Starkey describing it more like a republic with a hereditary ruler.
However, despite the strong links, all being nations that the English culture group has birthed, these nations are firstly independent and no longer view themselves as English.
Sources and Biography
Reuters Russia says it crushes cross-border incursion by ‘Ukraine nationalists’ link
Suppose a nation wishes to be taken seriously in international politics and project its influence and power globally.
If that is the case, it will require a powerful navy to meet the needs and requirements of its strategic goals, the long-term goal of policymakers, and the perceived national interests.
To make the correct choices, it’s first necessary to understand what a Navy is for and what it can do regarding geopolitics.
A Navy can control important points of international trade and leverage its naval power into leveraged against other nations (Just think of the Brits in the 18th Century).
The Navy, particularly the British Navy of the 19th century and the American one of the 20th to the present day, policed the global oceans, thereby facilitating the viability of globalisation and prosperity.
Previously if a nation could not access coal and steel, that nation would not be able to industrialise.
In previous centuries, governments operated on principles of imperialism and Mercantilism, a form of economic nationalism that sought to increase the prosperity and power of a nation through restrictive trade practices.
Its goal was to increase the supply of a state’s gold and silver with exports rather than to deplete it through imports. It also sought to support domestic employment.
The imperialist economic system meant that nations like Britain or France would conquer other countries, capture their internal markets, and sell to those markets goods from the home nations.
A great example is the English control of India and flooding the market with British textiles during the Industrial Revolution in Great Britain in the 1760s.
During the Imperial error, nations predominantly traded within the internal markets of the empires they established, and trading between other Imperial centres was greatly limited.
This only changed because the United States made it so all nations could peacefully trade on international waters without fearing piracy and privateers being backed by other countries against their rivals.
The American Navy Since World War II
On victory over Japan Day in 1945, the U.S. Navy had 1300 ships.
This count only considers major vessels and not individual landing craft or short-range patrols, and by the end of the Korean War, the Navy shrank to 600 vessels.
During the Vietnam War (1955 to 1975), the American Navy was 450 vessels, and when Ronald Reagan entered the White House in 1981, his primary goal was to have the American Navy of 600 ships by the end of his time in office United States at 594 ships.
This was partly done due to Ronald Reagan’s administration’s plan to bankrupt the Soviet Union, which according to the geopolitical analyst Peter Zhilan had already lost the Cold War by 1986.
Today’s American Navy stands at 295 vessels, again not considering smaller vessels used by the United States Navy.
It also must be strongly stated that a modern American military vessel would have been able to destroy the Japanese Navy of 1941.
The Navy is much smaller than the peak during World War II, and the capabilities and capacities of the modern Navy are vastly more effective and powerful than anything else that has existed on this earth.
The biggest concern about the current United States Navy is its overreliance on supercarriers.
The journalist and author of The Blue Age of the U.S. Navy Created Global Prosperity and Why We’re in Danger of Losing it, by Gregg Easterbrook.
In his book The Blue Age, he compared heavily gunned ships like the Dreadnought (1906) created by the British Empire in the early 20th century to compare the global view of the capacity of modern-day supercarriers.
As of 2021, an estimated 46 aircraft/helicopter carriers are in service worldwide.
The United States has 11 aircraft carriers and 9 “hello” carriers, nearly as many as all other countries combined, followed by Japan and France, each with four.
These carriers need Destroyer escort, with the American Navy only having 150 destroyers to escort its Carriers.
According to Peter Zilhen, American supercarriers can knockout nations, but there are not enough destroyers and smaller ships of the American Navy to protect the world’s oceans.
American Spending on Its Navy
In today’s American dollars, Ronald Reagan’s arms buildup in the 1980s to cripple the Soviet Union financially came to $400 billion yearly, more than twice the 170 billion United States spent on its Navy in 2020.
A study by Brown University found that American fighting in Afghanistan, Iraq, Pakistan, and Syria has cost $6.4 trillion in funding as well as future obligations to injured soldiers from these deployments.
The current budget of the United States Navy in 2020 worked out as $700 per American adult.
During the COVID crisis of 2020 to 2021, the United States added 5.3 trillion in debt to tackle the crisis, which in terms of emergency aid, gave American households an extra $25,000 per American adult transferred from 2020 to 2021.
Following the rising American national debt, which stands at $31,462,154,854,903 as of May 23, 2023, there is also a consumer increase in total household debt in the first quarter of 2023, increasing by $148 billion (0.9%) to $17.05 trillion.
This led to comments by the former American senator and ex-presidential runner John McCain, who stated in 2013 that a 300-ship Navy is an ‘a fantasy’ again due to the USA’s national debt and government debt.
Even more alarming is that Social Security and retirement for American citizens may no longer be feasible.
In 2020 trustees of the Social Security system they reported $43 trillion in unfunded liabilities for pensions and healthcare for the ever-growing ranks of the ageing that the money does not exist.
The Blue Age of the U.S. Navy Created Global Prosperity and Why We’re in Danger of Losing it, by Gregg Easterbrook. Link