Many questions arise amid the rapidly evolving events on the international arena, carrying heightened risks and leading to the worsening of the already volatile military, security, economic and living conditions. Are we aware of these risks? And are we ready to deal with them?
Let us go back to the global financial crisis that unfolded in September 2008 and was considered the worst of its kind since the Great Depression in 1929. The crisis that wreaked havoc on the global economy started in the #United_States (US) and rippled through the world countries, shaking the largest global financial institutions. Nineteen banks collapsed in the US alone in 2008, triggering a wave of panic similar to "Doomsday", as I described it back then.
Three years ago, the #Coronavirus pandemic swept the world with long-term serious effects. Life as we knew it changed, airports, schools and institutions closed, the pandemic spread throughout the world, the number of deaths increased, and unemployment reached alarming levels. The global financial losses were estimated at 14 trillion USD, not to mention the long-term losses due to the bankruptcy of several businesses.
The #Covid-19 outbreak is not the only reason behind the economic deterioration and decline in living conditions. As soon as the world breathed a sigh of relief, a new war began – almost a world war in disguise – between #Russia and #Ukraine, approaching its first anniversary. The war's repercussions were not limited to human and military losses for both countries directly involved but went far beyond with the onset of an economic war whose ripple effects are felt deeply in the west and all other countries.
No one knows when this war will end. Its heavy burden is undermining the European and global economies to the point that it may lead to collapse and total destruction if it lasts longer or expands further. It is terrifying how the living conditions of the populations of some major countries, such as #Great_Britain, have deteriorated as a result of the war. Skyrocketing prices, poverty, unemployment, and bankruptcy are not the whole story; the biggest threat is that things would go berserk due to the American and Western confrontation with #Russia on Ukrainian soil.
If we look closely and objectively into the recent global developments, the drums of a great world war can be heard loud and clear. International divisions and differences are re-emerging between forces aligned with the US policy and a pro-Russian international system represented by #China and #North_Korea.
As we witness armed military and nuclear muscle-flexing, space spying operations, tests of the latest ballistic and hypersonic missiles, the emergence of the role of surveillance and war drones, and mutual threats between the conflicting parties, states should reconsider their approach and readiness at the levels of economic, food and social security to weather the storm and overcome any repercussions of these potential risks.
Accordingly, the utmost priority should be given to the strengthening of our economy, society and institutions by dealing with things based on their degree of importance. I stress this not out of pessimism but of optimism and concern to protect ourselves. In this highly explosive and dangerous global atmosphere, it is essential to sort out priorities and focus on the most important. In the recent past, the #Covid-19 pandemic took us by surprise. Will we stand by helplessly as everything collapses dramatically due to sudden and accelerated developments obstructing the economic cycle?
The economy is the pillar of life, and institutional work is the economy's cornerstone. Therefore, we must protect our economy by preventing the collapse of our public and private institutions due to the risks besetting our world today.
The economic cycle must keep moving forward, but cautiously, and the institutional work should be restructured. In fact, an optimistic outlook protects businesses and communities and enlightens life. Since the continuation of the institutional work, in all circumstances, is a responsibility that rests with those who operate these institutions and oversee their management, and in order to prevent the collapse of states and institutions in these dire global circumstances, it is essential to set out priorities to protect everyone and ensure the continuity of work.
This should start with the freezing of all costly projects that can be put on hold for the time being, reducing external expenses, and focusing on the completion of vital projects only. The aim is to preserve #cash_flow and reduce expenses as much as possible to protect private and public institutions as well as investments from the impacts of a sudden economic shock or a mistake that would trigger a destructive nuclear world war, which is our worst fear today.
In short, it is a matter of pessimism or optimism at this stage. Optimism means that we should strive to develop a road map that would ensure the continuation of the institutional work and protect those in charge of it and the beneficiaries. The road map should also ensure the means to go forward under any stressful circumstances. In a worsening global situation and an expansion and escalation of the war, the available #cash_flow would be crucial in ensuring self-protection, survival and continuity.
The losses from the Russian-Ukrainian war and the arms race will far exceed those brought about by the #Coronavirus, with a toll estimated at 14 trillion USD (noting that the tourism sector incurred a third of these losses alone). Have we not learned from the disastrous repercussions of the earthquake that recently struck #Turkey and #Syria, which resulted in tens of thousands of victims and huge material losses?
It is necessary to be always on the alert and aware of what is happening around us. Optimism entails to be ready to deal with the looming risks and take steps to avoid the worst. The time will come when liquidity and #cash_flow will have the final say and determine the ability to move forward or be left behind. It is high time we act accordingly.