The Post-Cold War World 1990s
The end of the Cold War leads to… • the expansion of democracy across the globe. • Why? • an outbreak of ethnic conflict in the former USSR. • Why? • the U.S. as the only superpower (hegemon).
Expansion of Democracy • New democracies: • Spain • Portugal • Greece • Latin America (except Cuba) • Nigeria • Etc. • Expanded democracies • South Korea • Taiwan • South Africa • Etc.
Example: South Africa • Apartheid: system of racial segregation enforced by the National Party government in South Africa from 1948-1994 • Black South Africans were not allowed to vote, obtain certain jobs, travel freely, or even marry without the permission of the government • Does this sound familiar?
South Africa United States
Opposition to Apartheid • Internal: Nelson Mandela and the ANC (African National Congress) fought for racial equality for decades • External: After decades of condemnation from the UN, many countries passed sanctions against South Africa in the late 1980s. • Why now?
Exceptions to the Growth of Democracy • Parts of the Middle East (movements for democracy suppressed) • North Korea • Cuba • China
Example: China • Spring 1989 – thousands of pro-democracy protestors killed in Beijing’s Tiananmen Square
Violent Conflict in the Former USSR • Chechen War for Independence • Chechnya: oil-rich, Muslim province fighting for independence from Russia (failed – still a part of Russia, with sporadic fighting)
Violent Conflict in the Former USSR • Nagorno-Karabakh War (1988-1994) • Ethnic Armenians living in Azerbaijan wanted to unify with the country of Armenia – ethnic cleansing on both sides – ended in ceasefire in 1994 (still no resolution)
Violent Conflict in the Former USSR • Yugoslavia – country made up of 8 regions/provinces divided on ethnic lines • After end of Cold War, most of the provinces peacefully separated into different republics • Problem: Serbs, Croats and Muslim Bosnians were scattered across three different republics – Serbs dominated the former Yugoslav army and sought to create a “Greater Serbia” from land from Croatia and Bosnia – ethnic violence on all sides in the “greatest European conflict since WWII”
Exception: Czechoslovakia • Peacefully dissolved itself into two separate countries along ethnic lines in 1991 • Czech Republic • Slovak Republic
U.S. as Hegemon – What are we fighting for now? “What is at stake is more than one small country, it is a big idea — a new world order, where diverse nations are drawn together in common cause to achieve the universal aspirations of mankind: peace and security, freedom, and the rule of law.” - President George H.W. Bush, 1991
The Gulf War (1990-1991) • a.k.a. Operation Desert Storm • How did it start? • Saddam Hussein/Iraq invades oil-rich Kuwait • What happened? • UN Security Council – economic sanctions • Coalition (group) of nations send military into Iraq • Majority: US • Also: Saudi Arabia (paid for 50% of total cost), UK, Egypt • How did it end? • Clear military victory for Coalition but, Saddam Hussein was allowed to stay in power
U.S. Hegemony • Hegemony: leadership or dominance by one country or social group • Political hegemony • Military hegemony • Economic hegemony • Cultural hegemony • Does the U.S. still have hegemony today?