Are You Ready To Head For The Bunkers?

A Trump presidency was considered highly unlikely in the middle of last year but here we are. Is heading for the bunkers the most appropriate response? There it is undoubtedly a more dangerous world out there.

About two years ago, former US National Security Adviser and Secretary of State Henry Kissinger warned the Senate Armed Services Committee that, “as we look around the world, we encounter upheaval and conflict.” As Kissinger observed at the time, “the United States has not faced a more diverse and complex array of crises since the end of the Second World War.”

Europe feels as though it were surrounded by a ring of fire, from the revisionist and revanchist Russia in the east, to the multiple meltdowns in the Middle East and North Africa in the south.

Since the spring of 2014, when Russia started fueling the conflict in Donbas and other parts of Eastern Ukraine, ten thousand people have died there, and another two million have been displaced. And, of course, these figures pale in comparison to the humanitarian disasters in Syria, Libya, and Yemen.

Now, NATO is planning to deploy troops to Northeast Poland and the three Baltic States – Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania – while the European Union struggles to manage continuous refugee flows and exert control over its external borders.

Moreover, the security threat from Russia has prompted a gradual increase in European defense spending and security cooperation. Whereas the EU has traditionally made peace and prosperity its primary objectives, it is now being forced to prioritize security above all else. That is a significant change.

The “complex array of crises” has also not spared Saudi Arabia, from whence I am writing. No one seems to have an answer to such fundamental questions as how to restore stability to Yemen and the Levant, but everyone knows that as the conflicts continue, it becomes more likely that the entire region will be destabilized


  • This is a threat that no one can ignore.
  • Equally concerning are the voices in Washington calling for renewed confrontation with Iran.
  • Crisis management is an art form that one can only learn through experience, and with some training.


“In normal times, the web of international relations affords enough predictability, experience, and stability that even unexpected events are manageable, and do not precipitate major-power confrontations. There have been close calls in recent decades, but there have not been any unmitigated disasters.”

Eventually, the world will become accustomed to the Trump administration, and the Trump administration will get used to the world. But now that unpredictability is the order of the day, and a collective “me first” outlook has taken hold, we should prepare for the possibility that turmoil could go global.


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