Cold War “contest of ideas” here we come

by Chris Zappone

Obama tells Europeans it’s not the beginning of a new Cold War with Russia but Crimea shows the split between “the old way of doing things” and “a young century.”

“The contest of ideas continues for your generation…Russia’s leadership is challenging truths that only a few weeks ago seemed self-evident: that in the 21st century, the borders of Europe cannot be redrawn with force, that international law matters, that people and nations can make their own decisions about their future.”

 At this point, the big question is whether US-China-Russia competition remain largely devoid of ideas, or, now that the various sides are trying to defend their actions and positions with words and rhetoric, will a layer of ideology snap into place?

My hunch is that an ideological component will emerge, as the US, China and Russia dig in their heels.