Predicciones políticas Newsweek 2010: golpes en Venezuela y Pakistan, muerte de Castro, colapso de China
World Predictions for 2010.
Castro Dies, U.S. Relations Improve
Fidel Castro has been ailing for years, and 2010 looks to be his last year on earth. Control of Cuba will formally pass to brother Raul, who has been running the country during Fidel’s dotage. The transition will be peaceful, as most citizens, though they are dissatisfied with components of Fidel’s totalitarian system, don’t reject socialism outright. Cuba won’t change overnight, but Fidel’s demise will mean that all the doctrinal rigidities tied to his name (lack of press freedom, immigration restrictions, a cult of personality, persecution of gays) will get a second look. Foremost, Raul, recognizing the economic potential of improving ties with the U.S., will curtail the government’s anti-American rhetoric. The Obama administration, always on the lookout for rapprochement with rogues, will send a delegation of assistant secretaries from the State, Defense, Homeland Security, and Commerce Departments to visit. Within short order, and perhaps by year’s end, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton will announce a plan to normalize relations with Cuba by the year 2013.
Europe Faces New Financial Crisis
A Pyrrhic Victory for the Tories
Brazil Is the New China
Iran Hit With Sanctions
A Backlash Against European Racism
Chávez Faces Another Coup
The bullish global economy and skyrocketing demand for crude oil until late this decade played into the hands of Venezuelan strongman Hugo Chávez. But the recession took the wind out of Hurricane Hugo, and now Chávez’s quest to convert Latin America to “21st-century socialism” is falling apart. A carnival of government spending and a disastrous price freeze promise to stoke inflation. Prices, up 30 percent in 2009, will head even higher in 2010; inflation falls hardest on wage earners and the poor, Chávez’s choice constituency, and decimates public investment in roads and electricity. As rolling blackouts, mounting government debt, and the Cold War with Colombia—Venezuela’s biggest trade partner after the U.S.—grow worse, the problems will paralyze the economy, hobbling factories and emptying supermarkets. Fresh milk, beef, and floor fans become luxury items. Chávez declares war on the daily bath, “a bourgeois indulgence.” Even with oil prices rebounding, Venezuelan GDP tumbles for the second year running, shrinking 2 percent in 2010 as the rest of the world pulls out of recession. Privation stokes despair and crime; the murder rate in Caracas, already the hemisphere’s most violent city, goes off the charts. The Bolivarian leader’s vaunted popularity tumbles. The mood among the humblest Venezuelans, who put Comandante Hugo in power in the first place, and the disgruntled middle class, accustomed to Western-style consumerism, turns mean. The military steps in to depose Chávez and restore order, as 21st-century socialism spins toward the familiar 20th-century tableau of scarcity, poverty, and chaos.
Another Coup in Pakistan
China Will Crash
The Afghan Surge Works