The Geopolitics Of 2017 In 4 Maps

Tyler Durden's picture

Submitted by George Friedman and Jacob Shapiro via,

International relations and geopolitics are not synonymous... at least, not the way we understand them at Geopolitical Futures. “International relations” is a descriptive phrase that encompasses all the ways countries behave toward one another. “Geopolitics” is the supposition that all international relationships are based on the interaction between geography and power.

Our brand of geopolitics takes this a step further and asserts that a deep understanding of geography and power enables you to do two things. First, it helps you comprehend the forces that will shape international politics and how they will do so. Second, it allows you to identify what is important and what isn’t.

This makes maps an extremely important part of our work. Writing can be an ideal medium for explaining power, but even the best writer is limited by language when it comes to describing geography. So this week, we have decided to showcase some of the best maps our graphics team (TJ Lensing and Jay Dowd) made in 2016… not just because these four maps are cool (though they are), but because we think they go a long way in explaining the foundations of what will be the most important geopolitical developments of 2017.

Map 1: Russia’s Economic Weakness

Click to enlarge

This map illustrates three key aspects of Russia that are crucial to understanding the country in 2017. First is the oft-overlooked fact that Russia is a federation. Russia has a strong national culture, but it is also an incredibly diverse political entity that requires a strong central government. Unlike most maps of Russia, this one divides the country by its constitutive regions. There are 85 of these regions… 87 if you count Crimea and Sevastopol. Not all have the same status—some are regions, while others are autonomous regions, cities, and republics.

The second aspect is that there is a great deal of economic diversity in this vast Russian Federation. The map shows this by identifying regional budget surpluses and deficits throughout the country. Two regions have such large surpluses that they break the scale: the City of Moscow and Sakhalin. Fifty-two regions (or 60% of Russia’s regional budgets) are in the red. The Central District, which includes Moscow, makes up more than 20% of Russia’s GDP, while Sakhalin and a few other regions that are blessed with surpluses produce Russia’s oil.

The third aspect follows from combining the logical conclusions of the first two observations. Russia is vast, and much of the country is in a difficult economic situation. Even if oil stays around $55 a barrel for all of 2017, that won’t be high enough to solve the problems of the many struggling parts of the country. Russian President Vladimir Putin rules as an authoritarian. This is, in part, because he governs an unwieldy country. He needs all the power he can get to redistribute wealth so that the countryside isn’t driven to revolt.

Russia is making headlines right now because of Ukraine, Syria, and alleged hacking. But the geopolitical position of Russia is better described by studying the map above.

Map 2: China’s Cage

Click to enlarge

Maps that shift perspective can be disorienting, but they are meant to be. Our minds get so used to seeing the world in one way that a different view can feel alien. But that is even more reason to push through the discomfort. The map above attempts to do that by looking at the Pacific from Beijing’s perspective.

China's moves in the South China Sea have received a great deal of attention. In a Jan. 12 confirmation hearing with Congress, nominee for US Secretary of Defense James Mattish identified Chinese aggressiveness as one of the major reasons he believes the world order is under its biggest assault since World War II. But we believe the Chinese threat is overstated. This map helps explain why.

China’s access to the Pacific is limited by two obstacles. The first is the small island chains in the South and East China Seas. When we look at this map, China’s motive in asserting control over these large rocks and molehills becomes clear. If China cannot control these islands and shoals, they can be used against China in a military conflict. (If there were small island chains off the US coast in the Pacific or the Atlantic, US strategy might look like China’s.)

The second obstacle is that China is surrounded by American allies. Some such as Japan (and to a lesser extent South Korea and Taiwan) have significant military forces to defend themselves from Chinese encroachment. Taiwan sticks out as a major spur aimed squarely at China’s southeast coast. Those that don’t have sufficient military defenses, like the Philippines, have firm US security guarantees. China is currently at a serious geographic disadvantage in the waters off its coast.

This map, though, does not reveal a critical third piece of this puzzle—the US Navy outclasses the Chinese navy in almost every regard, despite impressive and continuing Chinese efforts to increase capabilities. But looking at this map, you can see why China wants to make noise in its coastal waters and how China is limited by an arc of American allies. You can also see why one of China’s major goals will be to attempt to entice any American allies to switch sides. Consequently, China’s moves regarding the Philippines require close observation in 2017.

Map 3: Redrawing the Middle East

Click to enlarge

It has become cliché to point out that the Middle East’s current political borders were drawn after World War I by colonial powers like the United Kingdom and France, and that the region’s wars and insurrections in recent years are making these artificial boundaries obsolete. What isn’t cliché is doubling down on that analysis. We’ve drawn a new map of the Middle East based on who controls what territory, as opposed to the official boundaries recognized by international organizations like the United Nations.

The map above reveals what the Middle East really looks like right now. Many will object to some of the boundaries for political purposes, but this map is explicitly not trying to make a political statement. Rather, it is an attempt to show who holds power over what geography in the Middle East.

From this point of view, Syria, Iraq, Yemen, and Libya don’t exist anymore. In their places are smaller warring statelets based on ethnic, national, and sectarian identities. Other borders (like those of Lebanon and Israel) are also redrawn to reflect actual power dynamics. Here, a politically incorrect but accurate map is more useful than an inaccurate but politically correct one.

Just as important as redrawing the borders of countries that no longer function as unified entities is noting which countries’ borders do not require redrawing. These countries include three of the region’s four major powers: Turkey, Iran, and Saudi Arabia. The borders of the other major power, Israel, are only slightly modified. (Egypt is an economic basket case and does not qualify as a major power, even though it has arguably the most cohesive national culture in the Arab world.)

The Middle East is defined by two key dynamics: the wars raging in the heart of the Arab world and the balance of power between the countries that surround this conflict.

Map 4: Imagining 2017’s Brexit

Click to enlarge

Analyzing this map must begin with a disclaimer: This is, first and foremost, an analytical tool and a means of thinking about Europe’s future. It is explicitly not a prediction of what Europe’s borders will look like in the future.

The map identifies areas in Europe with strong nationalist tendencies. Those regions with active separatist movements are not italicized. The italicized regions are those demanding increased autonomy but not independence. In many of these regions, secessionist movements may be favored by a minority of the population. The point here is not their size, but rather that in all these regions, there is some degree of national consciousness that is dissonant with the current boundaries of Europe’s nation-states.

The European Union is a flawed institution because its members could never decide what they wanted it to be. The EU is not quite a sovereign entity, but it claims more authority than a free trade agreement. European nation-states gave up some of their sovereignty to Brussels… but not all of it. So when serious issues arose (such as the 2008 financial crisis or the influx of Syrian and other refugees), EU member states went back to solving problems the way they did before the EU. Instead of “one for all and all for one,” it was “to each their own, but you still have to buy German products.”

Brexit shook the foundations of the EU in 2016. Elections in France and Germany and domestic instability in Italy will shake those foundations in 2017. But Brexit also opened the doors to a deeper question: How will national self-determination be defined in the 21st century? Not all of Europe’s nation-states are on stable ground. The most important consequences of Brexit may end up being its impact on the political future of the United Kingdom. And in Spain, Catalonia already claims it will hold an independence referendum this year.

Brussels, meanwhile, keeps trying to speak with one voice. This map communicates just how hard that is… not just for the EU, but also for some of Europe’s nation-states.


The saying goes that a picture is worth a thousand words. Maps are worth many more. Our perspective on the world is rooted in an objective and unbiased approach to examining geography and power. Maps like these are foundational components for building that perspective. These four maps are especially helpful in thinking about the geopolitical forces that will shape the world in the year ahead.

*  *  *

Over the last couple of weeks, we’ve shared some sneak peeks of our 24-page forecast, The World in 2017. If you’ve enjoyed these snapshots, you can now download your free copy of a special report that further illuminates the year ahead. The report, Top 3 Economic Surprises for 2017, contains information on what the future holds for three geopolitically important countries. Simply click here to get your free copy.

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knukles's picture

Like that map #3 has any better chance than the last redrawing of the ME by outsiders.

Stuck on Zero's picture

Statement: " If China cannot control these islands and shoals, they can be used against China in a military conflict."

Utter B.S. A few cruise missiles and those islands are eliminated. Fixed fortifications are pretty much useless in modern warfare.


Escrava Isaura's picture

The Geopolitics Of 2017 In 2 Words: Trade War


jeff montanye's picture

better a trade war than a shooting war but better negotiation to mutual advantage than a trade war.  cycles of unilateral tariffs and restrictions were one of the causes of the great depression and are unlikely to make either side richer.

not sure exactly how to interpret mr. friedman's and mr. shapiro's map of the middle east.  after fifteen years of u.s. aggression, fought at israel's behest (and that of its u.s. assets and  sayanim like paul wolfowitz, rahm emanuel, dick cheney, victoria nuland, hillary clinton and don rumsfeld), a number of countries are now in civil war (not a glitch, the app).  so now let's redraw the borders to formalize the u.s./israeli war crimes?

here's another idea: one person one vote inside the borders of israel's "control" thus including gaza.  how's that sound friedman and shapiro?

Eyjafjallajökull's picture

Another statement: "...noting which countries’ borders do not require redrawing. These countries include three of the region’s four major powers: Turkey, .... , and Saudi Arabia."

Wishful thinking of Globalist and Friedman of the Privatized CIA, called Stratfor.  The countries the globalists want dismembered and pushed into turmoil are described respectively. While Syria and Iraq are nicely sliced up on Ethnic or religious principles, the fact that Sunni ruled Saudi Arabia has an overwhelming Shia population, especially in the oil-rich areas, is left totally unnoticed. It's even more so in Qatar. But those are the globalist-neocons’ puppets, as we know. The same goes with Turkey, where actual Turkomans would be left with a tiny (central) bit of the country, with literally no access to sea. But hey. CIA can’t notice everything, can they.

While being happy about eliminating unified Europe as their economic rival, while stirring and amplifying Russian regional differences and contrasts, he is as blind as a bat to the similar, if not worse contrast within the USSA, where West Virginia, Detroit, Silicon Valley and Washington DC have way bigger discrepancies than various Russian regions.

Showing the ring of "enemies" around China, assumes blatantly that they are suicidal, yet bellicose lemmings, dreaming of dying for the long dead American dream at the whim of CIA/MIC controlled Washington and would never think of the possibility of normal, mutually beneficial neighbourly relations.

Well, we see what we want to see. Dream on, Friedman. Now there is at least justified hope that your corporate-controlled unipolar world system has jammed and loosing gears at increasing speed.   

Free Man's picture

A few Chinese Sunburn missiles and our Navy is toast.

Carriers & Destroyers are ducks on a pond.

Walken's picture

A few, heh? And those on the islands will just sit and eat rice? Come on. 

Proper "fixed fortifications" are far from being useless. It's like saying "tanks are useless". 

OverTheHedge's picture

The Saudis are currently working on proving the tanks are useless premis

TuPhat's picture

Everything is pretty much useless in modern warfare.

Radical Marijuana's picture

Everything is pretty well useless in post-modernized warfare, after the development of weapons of mass destruction which are trillions of times more destructive than anything which previously existed in human history. At the present time, Globalized Neolithic Civilization has become sort of "frozen in history," in that its entrenched sociopolitical habits are cruising on their momentum, built up by thousands of years of successfully being able to back up lies with violence, despite that doing so never stopped those lies from still being false.

The first generation that grew up within ways that previous systems of paper "money" frauds, backed by gunpowder weapons, worked is still alive today, when there are NOW globalized electronic "money" frauds, backed by the threat of force from atomic weapons, etc. ... There has been NO publicly significant changes in the ways that people think (or mostly do NOT think) about the combined money/murder systems. Rather, morbid sociopolitical habits continue to dominate the entrenched systems, as are operated by the best available professional hypocrites, who were socially successful by adapting to living inside being able to enforce frauds, in ways which deliberately did NOT think more deeply about those becoming exponentially more fraudulent, but rather, continued to deliberately misunderstand and misrepresent those systems as much as humanly possible.

Globalized Neolithic Civilization is MAD Money As Debt, backed by MAD Mutual Assured Destruction, which is becoming MADDER & MADDER ... The excessive successfulness of being able to back up lies with violence has become runaway criminal insanities, whereby those who were most socially successful within those established systems continue to believe that it is possible to have endless exponential growth of enforced frauds becoming exponentially more fraudulent.

The history of successful warfare based on backing up deceits with destruction has enabled successful finance to become based on enforcing frauds, all of which have been amplified to astronomical sizes by prodigious progress in physical science and technology, while political science thereby becomes a worse and worse oxymoron.

So-called "modern warfare" has actually become based on people NOT thinking about that! Rather, the combined money/murder systems are more and more exemplifying the insight of Albert Einstein that splitting the atom has changed everything, except the way we think, and therefore, we drift towards unparalleled catastrophes.

All the prodigious progress in physical science and technology, as enabled by series of intellectual scientific revolutions and profound paradigm shifts in mathematical physics, has nothing comparable to be found in political science. Rather, providing Globalized Neolithic Civilization with technologies that have become trillions of times more powerful and capable (and which are heading towards becoming quadrillions of times more so), have actually resulted in militarism, as the supreme ideology, due to it being the ideology of the murder system, more and more manifesting as runaway criminal insanities, which continue, as morbid sociopolitical habits, to back up the money systems, which are also more and more manifesting as runaway criminal insanities.

Natural selection pressures have driven the development of artificial selection systems to become as dishonest as those possibly become, as well as are still driving those to become exponentially more dishonest. More and better discoveries of relatively objective truths regarding the laws of nature have NOT been applied to better understand human beings within Globalized Neolithic Civilization, due to the ways that Civilization became almost totally based on being able to enforce frauds. Rather, the main themes of human history, at the present time, are the ways that all the established sociopolitical systems are becoming exponentially more fraudulent. Therefore, the main consistent theme regarding learning about that MADNESS is that THE MORE ONE LEARNS, THE WORSE THAT GETS ...

MAD Money As Debt, backed by MAD Mutual Assured Destruction, are entrenched systems whose inherent structures are automatically becoming MADDER & MADDER, especially because those who have adapted to become most socially successful within that MADNESS have been perfecting their abilities to indulge in that exponentially increasing MADNESS. Globalized Neolithic Civilization is based upon enforced frauds becoming exponentially more fraudulent, while those doing that persist in believing that it will be possible to endlessly back up bigger lies with more violence. In general, neither the money systems, nor the murder systems, are going through anything remotely close to adequately profound paradigms shifts, such as are theoretically imperative due to there actually developing globalized electronic frauds, backed by the threat of force from an overabundance of weapons of mass destruction of every possible kind. Instead, the prodigious progress in physical science continues to primarily be applied in order to become better at backing up bigger frauds with the credible threats of more force.

For instance, China is creating more "money" out of nothing as debts than any other country, while it attempts to "modernize" its military, in order to back that "money" up against possible constraints and competitors. Therefore, China, like every other major player in the world today, could destroy Globalized Neolithic Civilization, and it is that insane situation which continues to enable Globalized Neolithic Civilization to get MADDER & MADDER!

China is now integrated into Globalized Neolithic Civilization, which is based on being able to apparently "lend wealth" into existence, which can then be used to "pay" for wasting the planet's natural resources as fast as possible. China, like every other facet of Globalized Neolithic Civilization is based upon being able to continue to enforce frauds, in ways which are becoming exponentially more fraudulent, while the people doing that are able to deliberately ignore and/or misunderstand what they are really doing as much as humanly possible.  The basic politics of Civilization is runaway MADNESS. Of course, it is militarism, as the ideology of the murder systems, that leads the way, especially because those murder systems back up the money systems.

 Nothing that is now politically significant regarding the established money/murder systems is able and willing to go through series of intellectual scientific revolutions and profound paradigm shifts in order to better understand themselves. Rather, everything that is now politically significant is the expression of runaway criminal insanities, that are eager to exploit the technologies enabled by series of profound paradigm shifts in mathematical physics, while adamantly refusing to think any differently about political issues, as should be inspired by those intellectual scientific revolutions that were already achieved in physical science.

Everyone making "money" within Globalized Neolithic Civilization is necessarily embracing the criminal insanities of the established monetary systems. The vicious spirals of political funding operating through the monetary systems are automatically becoming worse, faster. It appears that the natural selection pressures which drove Globalized Neolithic Civilization to develop the maximum possible dishonesties about themselves are the only factors which could eventually "correct" those maximum possible dishonesties. Civilization has become such totally runaway MADNESS, that nothing but series of psychotic breakdowns appear to be actually possible consequences of that MADNESS.

"The Geopolitics Of 2017 In 4 Maps," was typical of the kinds of superficially correct articles republished on Zero Hedge, which are interesting to examine, BUT which grossly understate the overall situation, that could be revealed by better overall maps of the combined money/murder systems, EXCEPT that the results of presenting such infographics would be to present utter MADNESS!

Croesus's picture


@ Tyler:

Any chance you could post the map on the headline page for this article here?

It looks like Mercator. I collect Ortelius... (along with Blaeau's early stuff, and Cellarius's celestial maps from the Harmonia Macrocosmica)

samcontrol's picture

Ouff , i thought you might of wanted a flat earth map!

DEMIZEN's picture

artic is the new center. With coming commercial autonomous submarines, the goods will be moved under the ice crust at very low cost.

Jubal Early's picture

Now that they have finally pryed that family of Kenyan chimpanzee poseurs out of the white house, the time was ripe for a new avatar.  However I do think that at a glance that globe looks more like the eye of sauron than the north pole.

I will retain my avatar because I truly hope some southern general marches into washington and burns the entire city down, whether that Yankee Trump is on office or not.


Plat0nas's picture

A quick stetement concenrnig the map#3:There is NO turkish repubilc of Northern Cyprus...there is the Cyprus Republic which is a EU member state & the turkish occupied north region of the island which is actually recognised by noone except the Turks. 

alexyflemming's picture

There IS Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus.






alexyflemming's picture
Northern Cyprus is legal:


1. LEGALITY AND RECOGNITION ARE TWO COMPLETELY DIFFERENT THINGS Recognition is completely a political notion/act (as stated by Int’l Court of Justice, Kosovo 2010 decision) and has nothing to do with legality. 1/193 country recognizes Northern Cyprus; but even if 0/193 countries recognize NC, this has nothing to do with legality of NC. The President of the International Court of Justice (ICJ) Hisashi OWADA (2010): “International law contains no “prohibition on declarations of independence.” the International Court of Justice (ICJ) (2010): “while the declaration may not have been illegal, the issue of RECOGNITION was a POLITICAL one”. Recognition is a political, not a legal matter. That is to say, “being recognized/not recognized does not affect legality/illegality of a country”. Recognition is a political action. SINCE NORTHERN CYPRUS IS LEGAL, ALL ITS COURTS AND LAWS ARE ACCEPTED IN THE WORLD: SEE 2 & 3 BELOW.



In Northern Cyprus, laws of Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus are valid: ECtHR’s 02.07.2013 Decision: “…notwithstanding the lack of international recognition of the regime in the northern area, a de facto recognition of its acts may be rendered necessary for practical purposes. Thus, THE ADOPTION BY THE AUTHORITIES OF THE “TRNC” OF CIVIL, ADMINISTRATIVE OR CRIMINAL LAW MEASURES, AND THEIR APPLICATION OR ENFORCEMENT WITHIN THAT TERRITORY, may be regarded as having a legal basis in domestic law for the purposes of the Convention”. Note: In the related ECtHR’s decision above, the case application of the Greek Cypriot was IMMEDIATELY REJECTED; i.e., his application was found INADMISSABLE. That is to say, he was expelled by ECtHR just at the beginning; therefore, his case was not handled (no sessions were held) by ECtHR at all. ECtHR’s 02.09.2015 Decision: “..the court system in the “TRNC”, including both civil and criminal courts, reflected the judicial and common-law tradition of Cyprus in its functioning and procedures, and that the “TRNC” courts were thus to be considered as “established by law” with reference to the “constitutional and legal basis” on which they operated……the Court has already found that the court system set up in the “TRNC” was to be considered to have been “established by law” with reference to the “constitutional and legal basis” on which it operated, and it has NOT accepted the allegation that the “TRNC” courts as a whole lacked INDEPENDENCE and/or IMPARTIALITY ……when an act of the “TRNC” authorities was in compliance with laws in force within the territory of northern Cyprus, those acts should in principle be regarded as having a LEGAL basis in domestic law for the purposes of the Convention..” Note: Here, what ECtHR means by “laws in force within the territory of northern Cyprus” is the laws that TRNC published and put into implementation, as can be understood from ECtHR’s above 02.July.2013 decision.



USA Federal Court (09.October.2014): “Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus is a democratic country” “Although the United States does not recognize it as a state, the TRNC purportedly operates as a DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC with a president, prime minister, legislature and judiciary…TRNC is NOT VULNERABLE to a lawsuit in Washington” The news of the Court decision (13.10.2014): Page of the Court case: (Note the Defendant: Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus!); Decision of the Court:



The President of the Int’l Court of Justice (ICJ) Hisashi Owada, 2010: “International law contains “NO PROHIBITION” on declarations of independence.”



Northern Cyprus being a country is not disputed. The definition of “country” is bigger than whether being a UN member or not. There are countries that are not member of UN. See, “country” definition in WP: A country is a region identified as a distinct entity in political geography. A country may be an independent sovereign state or one that is occupied by another state, as a non-sovereign or formerly sovereign political division, or a geographic region associated with sets of previously independent or differently associated peoples with distinct political characteristics. That’s why, even the sources from United Nations (UN) cite Northern Cyprus as a different country: World Happiness Report 2015 of United Nations’ Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN) ranked Northern Cyprus 66th among 158 countries, directly above the Republic of Cyprus, which was ranked 67th. UN SDSN World Happiness Report 2015 p.27: 2012-2014 country rankings: United Nations’ (UN) Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN) World Happiness Report 2016: http://5c28efcb768db11c7204-4ffd2ff276d22135df4d1a53ae141422.r82.cf5.rac... See “Figure 2.2: Ranking of Happiness 2013-2015 (Part 2)” North Cyprus: 62th among 157 countries (1:best, 157:worst) (South, Greek) Cyprus: 69th among 157 countries.
alexyflemming's picture

Turkey’s operation on Cyprus in 1974 is completely legal

(1) Makarios (1ST PRESIDENT OF CYPRUS) (the UN Security CouncilSpeech, 19 July 1974):

MAKARIOS: “CYPRUS WAS INVADED BY GREECE”. Sound record of the speech:


(2) Till now, there is NO sanction applied on Turkey due to 1974 Cyprus war

If a country invades another one, UN imposes sanctions on that country. Iraq invaded Kuwait, and UN imposed sanctions on Iraq. Turkey did not invade Cyprus, hence UN did not impose any sanction on Turkey!


(3) There is no UN Security Council resolution that calls the Turkey’s 1974 action as “invasion”!

(4) The Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE)(29.07.1974, Resolution 573): “The Turkish military INTERVENTION was the exercise of a RIGHT EMANATING FROM AN INTERNATIONAL TREATY and the fulfilment of a LEGAL and MORAL obligation.”


(5) Greece’s Athens Court of Appeals (21.03.1979; Case No: 2658/79): “The Turkish military INTERVENTION in Cyprus, which was carried out in accordance with the Zurich and London Accords, was LEGAL. Turkey, as one of the Guarantor Powers, had the right to fulfill her obligations. The real culprits . . . are the Greek officers who engineered and staged a coup and prepared the conditions for this INTERVENTION.” Note: Just after 5 years later than 1974, in 1979, Greece’s Highest Court decided Turkish military intervention is legal without making any difference between 1st and 2nd military operation!


(6) Turkey acted on Cyprus via Art. IV(2) Treaty of Guarantee (“In the event of a breach of the provisions of the present treaty, Greece, Turkey and the United Kingdom undertake to consult together with respect to the representations or measures necessary to ensure observance of those provisions. IN SO FAR AS COMMON OR CONCERTED ACTION MAY NOT PROVE POSSIBLE, EACH of the three GUARANTEEING POWERs reserves THE RIGHT TO TAKE ACTION with the sole aim of re-establishing the state of affairs created by the present Treaty.”), hence in compatible with Art. 2(4) UN Charter.

peddling-fiction's picture

Maps have everything to do with power.

The choice of the projection is very telling.

Its boundaries as well as its orientation.





spells NEWS as well.


lolmao500's picture

This map, though, does not reveal a critical third piece of this puzzle—the US Navy outclasses the Chinese navy in almost every regard, despite impressive and continuing Chinese efforts to increase capabilities. But looking at this map, you can see why China wants to make noise in its coastal waters and how China is limited by an arc of American allies.

Thing is, if shit hits the fan in the south china sea or taiwan, pentagon plans to hit missile/air bases in mainland china to protect the carriers. If that happens, China said many times that they would nuke the US.... sooooooooooooo yeah

DEMIZEN's picture

Todays navy is a bunch of sitting ducks, kinda like cavalty in 1941, vulnerable from air, surface and sea.  Submarines are the key to new sea domination. 

Sorry_about_Dresden's picture

The US Navy is working on kinetic energy wepaons that can hurl a piece of alloy at 40,000 mph that will cut through the hull of a carrier like a hot knofe through butter. This makes carrier warfare an outdated mode of offense, as we will find out in the first day of any major conflict.

As the jets lose a platform to launch offensive raids, the MIC will have to reconsider options. 

Navy will get slaughtered in next conflict. They will be sliced and diced like the Polish cavalry.   


DEMIZEN's picture

In addition you will have unmanned submarines and swarms of propelled seamines  near the costlines wich will make any attempts of mass landing a total slaughterhouse. Unmanned submarines are so easy to navigate and need no active sonar or gps. all these do is scan DEMs (digital elevation models)  of the sea ground. DEM is like a fingerprint and unique to location and in combination with compass gives definite location.

Sea surface wont be suitable for the warfare in the future and trump is right to isolate. No force will be able to dominate the seas at tolerable costs to economy unless only one superpower or alliance remains.  Us navy should build nothing but tactical submarines capable of launching hypersonic projectiles for deployment to arctics instead of wasting money on useless littoral ships and other futuristic toys like zumwalt.


shovelhead's picture

The Pentagon calls you and tells you their plans?

Shit. You must be important.

BarkingCat's picture

I read the article and looked at the maps and a question arose in my mind: who is tge jew that created this piece.

I scrolled to the top to look at the author's name and my suspicion was reaffirmed.

pc_babe's picture

your drivel is more like a barking spider

rejected's picture

A map of the United States regional surpluses and deficits might be interesting.

TeethVillage88s's picture

Well if you look at International Relations Foundations/Universities... you are looking at Neocons/Neoliberal Warmongers and Economic Saboteurs.

Am I Right?

- Ford Foundation
- Chicago Boys
- Leo Strauss, University of Chicago

"International relations and geopolitics are not synonymous... at least, not the way we understand them at Geopolitical Futures. “International relations” is a descriptive phrase that encompasses all the ways countries behave toward one another. “Geopolitics” is the supposition that all international relationships are based on the interaction between geography and power."

I will look at article further to see if I am misunderstanding.

- Chatham House

Daw Aung San Suu Kyi leaves Chatham House after addressing an event on responsible investment in Burma and receiving her Chatham House Prize, 22 June 2012

Drawing upon its members, Chatham House aims to promote debate on significant developments in international affairs and policy responses. Their independent research and analysis on global, regional and country-specific challenges is intended to offer new ideas to decision makers on how these could best be tackled from the near to the long term. Chatham House is routinely used as a source of information for media organisations seeking background or experts upon matters involving major international issues.

Although it has been alleged that Chatham House reflects a pro-establishment view of the world[4] (due to donations from large corporations, governments and other organisations), Chatham House is nevertheless membership-based and anyone may join. It has a range of membership options for corporations, academic institutions, NGOs, and individuals including students and under 35s. In addition to corporate members consisting of government departments, large corporations, academic institutions, investment banks, NGOs, energy companies and other organisations, Chatham House currently has international leaders from business, diplomacy, science, politics and media as its individual members.[5]

Chatham House Rule
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Chatham House is the origin of the anonymity rule known as the Chatham House Rule, which provides that guests attending a seminar may discuss the results of the seminar in the outside world, but may not discuss who attended or identify what a specific individual said. The Chatham House Rule evolved to facilitate frank and honest discussion on controversial or unpopular issues by speakers who may not have otherwise had the appropriate forum to speak freely. Despite this, most meetings at Chatham House are held on the record, and not under the Chatham House Rule.
Research and publications

Free Man's picture

A few Chinese Sunburn missiles and the US Navy becomes irrelevant junk at the bottom of the ocean.

Guccifer debunks Russian 'hacking' nonsense as "Fake Evidence"

honest injun's picture

These maps are really interesting.  I would like to see a map of the power behind the thrones. That is, a map of the central banks.  How are they interrelated and which are actually decision makers.  

runnymede's picture

Translation: humans identify and associate with who they want to identify and associate with. Any outside attempts to impose any constraints amounts to coercive central planning and will ultimately lead to conflict, bloodshed, and misallocation of resources. Collectivism in all it's various names is simply the most efficient method of organizing the theft of the world's wealth by bankers/merchants. 

Lost in translation's picture

Excellent essay. TY Tyler(s).

sinbad2's picture

Mostly just lies by members of the tribe. They get rich by convincing Americans that the rest of the world is a threat to America, they live off the blood of others, they are real vampires, sucking the life out of human beings.

DEMIZEN's picture

When peple draw these maps they do not consider momentum. maps are static. it wont take china more than a week to take over taiwan in case of a conflict. they can probably saturate any sofisticated missile defence capabilities of japan and korea. if they place their strategic weapons on the new artificial islands, they will tactically control malaka straits and can hit guam anytime they want. They shouldnt be underestimated.


Russian and european desintegration forces map is ridiculous and lack any real ground movements for independence are nonexistent or trivial, limited to anarchists skinheads and bikergroups, and as such irrelevant to american policy. All these movements are pro-putin. Independent Carinthia? Give me a break.


gcjohns1971's picture

The China analysis is simply wrong.

Japan, the Phillipines, Taiwan, Malaysia, and Indionesia are NOT small barrier island to China, but significant land masses in their own right, and home to a billion people.

China is aggressive in the South China Sea because there is purported to be oil there. And they don't want to share it with Malaysia, Vietnam, or the Phillipines.  Taking the Sea cuts those nations from their main food supply, as well. Period. Full stop.

Think about that.


The Arab states are a mess.  They've been a mess since the Mongols. The only reason their mess hurts anyone besides themselves is oil.   No oil, no Madrassas, no Islamicism exported, no problem to anyone but themselves.

BUT, under Turk rule, with oil they become a threat to Europe.  Lacking the cohesion and Turkish organization of the Arabs, the Turks become a second tier Euro power that is culturally and technologically out of step, but generally non threatening.

No one is correctly analyzing Erdogan.

overmedicatedundersexed's picture

command and control is the weak point in a nuke called modern generals are much like the FRENCH leadership of WWI..fighting the last war..and getting butt kicked while butchering whole armies(trench warfare what genius)...are we not still in afganistan? Iraq? for god sake S Korea? young men wasted for lack of good leaders.

If we are sane..those leaders who want war..should fight themselves in "Thunder dome"

2 enter one leaves..

nothing else avoids millions of dead. modern warfare is no longer an option..

I think alot of world problems would evaporate if the worlds people demanded

the leadership who seek war and power..fight in Thunder dome..

funny how few generals lead from the front..I guess they know something..LOL

falak pema's picture

No geopolitical map of the USA, Canada and Mehico + central american hot spots notably Panama canal ?

What happens if geopolitics of past globalization mayhem legacy and nascent hypernationalism tear apart the USA like during the 1860s?

Something to consider today in a nation now being divided under the Duck.

No point being a wolf in other people's backyards if you can't see the inbred wolf or the neighbouring one in your own!

That is the golden rule of human conflicts or peacemaking : Do unto others, apply unto others RECIPROCITY and remember there is no such thing as manifest destiny; unless you be an ancient Roman whose bones lie in that olde Coliseum in ruins since 500 AD !

aardvarkk's picture

The US was fractured when one large faction threw out the "melting pot" model and decided that the only thing that matters is identity politics and power.  The rest of us stepped back and said "WTF?". And then elected the president that doesn't give two shits about "diversity", correctly recognizing it as a byproduct rather than the sole goal of the nation.

Well, that and at least he is not yet a proven criminal like the other realistic option.

falak pema's picture

the day you redefine the "sole goal" of a nation you will be a wiser man than Jefferson.

He just said : life, liberty and pursuit of happiness. 

Totally_Disillusioned's picture

geopolitical maps especially correlated to surplus/debt can be instructive just who the threats are...Thanks for the nontrad views.

Sean7k's picture

I grew up in California and spent most of my life there. Having done so, I became accustomed to "the fence". Whereby all people defined their little nation states within walls of cheap cedar dog eared fencing, etc. It was "my" space.
Of course, people occasionally fought over these lines, spending thousands of dollars and forcing fences to be removed and replaced on lines, lines determined in courts at great cost to the public.

At one point, I moved to Washington, outside Seattle. One of my first discoveries was the absence of fences (well, until the Californians overran the place). Houses appeared to be placed in parks. People and animals moved freely while maintaining respect for property. It was a beautiful change.

What makes a map which shows nation states useless? Clear lines of demarcation never exist, but they do allow the State to call for the defense of said lines. Attempts to hem in the expansive and collapse the abandoned provide additional opportunities

Just another tool in the hands of the powers whom work night and day to distract us from the purpose we all share: learning to love all life. The Creator lives in all life and all life lives in the Creator. Who do we harm when we work so feverishly to destroy Its' creation?

Dr. Bonzo's picture

If China cannot control these islands and shoals, they can be used against China in a military conflict.

Right. This argument served the Japs brilliantly during WWII. The only way for the islands not to be used against China in a conflct is for the islands not to exist. Savvy?

The second obstacle is that China is surrounded by American allies.

Riiiiiight. I know, whitey self-loathing is at all time-highs and it's trendy to just hate ourselves, our gubmint, our military, ourselves and everything with it, but some salient facts can't be avoided. The only reason China is surrounded by American allies is because, contrary to the commie myth-making machine, Han Chinese are incredibly land-grabby greedy motherfuckers. "China" itself is a construct of different countries and former independent kingdoms. It's an Asian Europe where the Han Chinese slowly and deliberately conqured one kingdom after another until the controlled essentially most of the continent. Korea was as much a tributary to China as Tibet, and by Chinese historical logic applied to Tibet and Xinjiang, Korea itself is, according to the Chinese, part of China.

In the modern era the commie Chinese have been at war with Vietnam, India, annexed Tibet, Mongolia and Korea. That's... basically all their immediate neighbors with the exception of the Russians. The commies are massive fucking greedy fucking assholes, their PR-bullshit about "soft power" is so much sheer manure.

All China has to do to be surrounded by trade partners and friendly neighbors, is stop being fucking cunts.


jm's picture

This article is good and interesting, but it only intimates. It doesn't go far enough. Fair enough because nobody can tell the future, but the following is,my base case.

The problem is bigger tha. Russia. The issue is the absolute end of the commodity super cycle and the challenges of "authoritarian capitalism". I am thinking India benefits and capital should be there.

The EU is dead because demographically, politically, politically and economically the region is completely incapable of rising to any challenge that comes its way. Either collectively or as fragmented nations, Europe just doesn't matter except to watch a slow motion demolition. From 4 million refugees and counting, to the ponzified welfare state, to the financial and economic implosion due to diminished demand and balance sheet cancer.

China combines the worst of the two problems above. The malinvestment , corruption, demographic collapse, and huge international ill-will in Asia will bust that big and stupid bubble. The us held together in the 1930s. China didn't and it is heading for fragmentation again. Cantonese baby.

Perhaps the biggest mega trend is the "wonderful Sunni Unwind". Pretty much everybody hates Islam as the fascist Pedophilic death cult it is. Even a huge chunk of muslims hate other muslims. But Wahhabi\Saudi\nunkillers\rape-the-infidels's-children types are going to be wiped out. Shiites are in, sunnis are out. You'll see Ronhingyas everywhere. And there is no telling how the Middle East will look, but Iran is going to dominate, perhaps they can be more open to liberty and prosperity with some effort, but the Saudi-centric status quo isn't going to last. Just like Barak Hussein and his Muslim brotherhood.

Radical Marijuana's picture

More victories from the international bankers' point of view:

From this point of view, Syria, Iraq, Yemen, and Libya don’t exist anymore. In their places are smaller warring statelets based on ethnic, national, and sectarian identities.

Making the World Safe for Banksters: Syria in the Cross-hairs


That the America people, as well as the people in NATO countries generally, suffer from the costs and consequences does not significantly change that the international bankers continue to be overall victorious when they are able to get countries that are already controlled to destroy countries which the banksters do not yet completely control.

From that overall perspective,

Trump's inauguration speech:

presents a superficial analysis of various problems, which does NOT mention following the "money" to its SOURCE. Indeed, at the present time, it is impossible to imagine how Trump, or anyone else, could be politically successful by providing any deeper analysis of the issues, because of the degree to which the issues regarding following the "money" to is SOURCE were deliberately NEVER mentioned in the mainstream schools and mass media.

Despite that the roles of the international bankers ARE OVERWHELMING, or rather, precisely because that IS the case, their roles are barely ever mentioned in any significant public debates, even while the USA has "led" the way towards creating the conditions which have resulted in that:

"... Syria, Iraq, Yemen, and Libya don’t exist anymore. In their places are smaller warring statelets based on ethnic, national, and sectarian identities."

Something similar could also be said regarding the maps of possible "statelets" developing within the European Union, or the Russian Federation, or even in the USA. From any point of view regarding practical politics, there is nothing even remotely close to effectively challenging the degree to which the "money" systems, backed by the "murder" systems, actually dominate Globalized Neolithic Civilization. There has been such excessively successful degrees of divide and conquer to oblivion, that there are barely any traces of some significant, genuine opposition to the degree to which the already entrenched combined money/murder systems are totally triumphant.

In that light, for those who like to draw maps, I recommend that it would be interesting to attempt to draw global and regions maps that infographically present which areas where controlled by which kinds of monetary systems. In that context, I would recommend reconsidering statements asserted in this article on "The Geopolitics Of 2017 In 4 Maps."

"The saying goes that a picture is worth a thousand words. Maps are worth many more. Our perspective on the world is rooted in an objective and unbiased approach to examining geography and power. Maps like these are foundational components for building that perspective. ... a politically incorrect but accurate map is more useful than an inaccurate but politically correct one."

THE MOST "politically incorrect" maps would be ones which presented the monetary systems which dominate Globalized Neolithic Civilization. Indeed, I have never yet seen one, but only a few, scattered articles which present some of that information. Even those articles, and related books, tend to continue to follow the mainline of being "politically correct" by NOT admitting and addressing how and why the actually existing combined money/murder systems necessarily operate according to the principles and methods of organized crime, such that the biggest and best gangsters have made and maintained the established systems whereby public governments enforce frauds by private banks, as well as also have made and maintained the systems which benefit by big corporations, which grew up around those big banks, through more and more sophisticated and integrated legalized lies, backed by legalized violence.

The most important overall trends regarding the development of Globalized Neolithic Civilization is that its abilities to enforce frauds are enabling it to become exponentially more fraudulent ... Meanwhile, the vast majority of public debates are focused upon lesser issues, which are driving the divide and conquer to oblivion trajectories. Within that context, President Trump illustrates the ways in which those phenomena are being expressed. Those who are more and more suffering the consequences of combined money/murder systems based upon enforced frauds are, therefore, more and more aware of how blatant those consequences have become. In that context, Trump was able to win an election by effective public speaking about those phenomena, BUT ONLY IN SUPERFICIALLY CORRECT WAYS.

The government of the USA has been more and more controlled by the international bankers for more than Century. In any infographic map of the world's monetary systems, the USA would be a big block of solid colour representing almost total bankster domination. At the same time, the flip side of that would be that any map which presented the USA as suffering from the trends of divide and conquer to oblivion would be probably one of the most extremely checkered regional maps.

radbug's picture

From the Gulf of Siam to the New Hebrides, to the north of Australia lies a 4,000 mile archipeligo, the preserve of the Brown Seas Australian Navy/Diplomacy. This view implies that Australia is theoretically at loggerheads with China over the Spratleys etc.

I Feel a little Qeasy's picture

Complete bullshit. Russias economic 'weakness' is its massive resources, educated and united population. That is, not weak at all. They'll trade with the east if markets are closed in the west, and the west will be the weaker for it.