The International System in the Next Half-Century
In this chapter, the author seeks to anticipate the character of the international system of the year 2000. It is projected with as much specificity as a historian will use in the year 2000, writing retrospectively. The events in the passing year clearly make what was written in 1985 seem a bit antique. And insofar as any one prediction is awry, other predictions will become so too. The world is a tightly linked system. The choice to write a history in reverse was, in part, an expression of a sense of incapacity to conceive in any other way of what 2000 will be like. What life will be like in 2000 is a function of what life will be like in 1990, and that in turn of 1980. The trends that the author has predicted for the first five years are the beginnings of trends he expects to continue for the most part for the subsequent twenty years.