Danger of apocalyptic thinking

Honjo, Saitama

Regarding Shinji Fukukawa’s Aug. 9 article “Populism is destroying globalism“: I find Fukukawa’s observations and the way he supports his title statement problematic at several points, yet they are illustrative of the trend toward “apocalypsism.”

I find it ironic that Fukukawa calls for increased globalism when the negative attitude he takes to the current state of the world is most likely detrimental to healthy globalism. If one notices only the negative developments and not the positive, there is the danger of seeking reform that throws away our greatest accomplishments.

For example, he expresses the common opinion that the U.N. Security Council has failed because it was endowed with the duty to [ensure security around the world]. But what is not recognized so often is that the UNSC was also entrusted with protecting sovereignty and preventing great powers from running amok under the veil of humanitarian intervention. The UNSC is a morally neutral body that has the duty to balance the extremes of sovereignty and conflict management.

It is also rarely recognized that the UNSC’s main priority is not to prevent breaches of human rights or violations of sovereignty — these are sideshows — but rather, as the UNSC was constructed after World War II, to prevent conflict between great powers. Needless to say, a military confrontation between Russia and the U.S. over Syria would have much more destructive potential than Syria’s civil war. Thus the UNSC has fulfilled its main priority.

There are other examples from Fukukawa’s article that demonstrate apocalyptic thinking, which is neither conducive to the development of globalism nor supportive of the argument that “Globalism is faltering.”

The opinions expressed in this letter to the editor are the writer’s own and do not necessarily reflect the policies of The Japan Times.

ryan flynn