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Diplomatic World_nummer 56.

continent. This means

continent. This means anticipating and negotiating an articulation between the European project, the New Silk Road initiative and the Eurasian Economic Union along the Europe-Russia-China axis. THREE ROUTES ARE INTERESTING FOR EUROPE The materialization of the Northern Sea Route would facilitate access to Siberian resources and is the shortest sea connection with China and the Far East. The continental corridor transiting through Russia would reconnect Western Europe with Russia, and trains could unload goods in Russia, before going to China. The Southern continental corridor would facilitate a rapprochement between Europe and Central Asia. There is a growing necessity to rethink the links between the European project, Russia and China. It is counterproductive today to pursue a policy of isolating Russia, and pushing it ever more towards an exclusive Russian-Chinese alliance that keeps the nations of the EU in an exclusive Euro-Atlantic area. This approach makes Europe a periphery of this Euro-Atlantic entity. Moreover, as a pivotal space, Europe risks being fragmented between emerging rival Euro-Atlantic and Euro-Asiatic geopolitical alliances. The Connection to the Silk Road Initiative should push European nations towards engaging more deeply in a dialogue on the finality of the European project. Hopefully, a better coordination between European states would benefit Europe as a whole. This means that a reformed EU should establish relations with the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (OCS) but also the Eurasian Economic Union (EEU). The geopolitical complementarities between Europe and Central Asia, with Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan as pivots, can be strengthened to stabilize this strategic zone for the benefit of the entire Eurasian continent. and regulating its exchanges with the outside. It is also necessary for the maintenance of the national identity. A border filters what is good for the nation and rejects what threatens it. Any economic exchange should be of benefit to all partners and that is why the issue of reciprocity should be addressed. The nations of the European continent, from Brest to Vladivostok, that is all members of the Council of Europe, have to play a moderating role in the face of growing geopolitical rivalries in Eurasia. It would be better for them to avoid being obliged to align themselves blindly in the case of a global US-Chinese confrontation. They should equally avoid a Chinese-American condominium (G2), in which they would be excluded from major decisions. Finally, nations of the Eurasian continent also have the urgency to contain the Islamist push originating from the arc of crisis along a belt from Africa to the south-Western part of the Eurasian continent. In the end, the project of the New Silk Road Initiative has not only a geostrategic and economic dimension, but also a civilisational dimension. The exchanges between cultures on the Eurasian continent may potentially make the Old World an important geopolitical axis of the world again. The project therefore also implies a new approach of globalization. European nations and China should share the geopolitical goal of a multicentered world based on geopolitical balances and the respect for sovereignty, but also the balance between civilizations. 88 The major interest of Europeans in a stronger engagement in the New Silk Road initiative is more strategic reflection on the future model of globalization, in order to better influence it, rather than to be undergone by it. It is time to challenge the ultra-liberal ideology dogmas and to push back the excesses of globalization, which requires for European nations to address the issue of borders and territorial control more deeply. A border is an organic envelope necessary for the survival of a nation, Pierre-Emmanuel Tomann

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