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The world today is hostage to decolonization, marked by its failures. The old world has been unable to accommodate the new one within the community of so-called “civilized” nations. Yet there are few exceptions, such as in Japan and Latin America, between 1947, date of the independence and partitioning of India, and the last wave of decolonization in the mid-1970s, no one knew how to open the door to the newcomers in a suitable way. In the aftermath of the colonial order, a post-colonial order was rebuilt based on trusteeship over the recently “emancipated” states. This was the purpose of the British Commonwealth, of the “Community” designed by General de Gaulle in 1958, and the notorious “Françafrique.” It was overlooked that these new states had their own histories and could not safely follow down the Western path of nation-building… This chapter explores the concepts of weak states and neocolonialism, how an instrumental vision of the South developed, why the Middle East can be seen as a volcano. It also questions issues of proximity and civilizational depth, the new conflicts and so called multi-level wars, and finally turns to the question of power, its powerlessness, and the power of the weak.
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