What the past tells us about tomorrow

The World Today was born 70 years ago. In this special anniversary edition, we will be looking at what the past can tell us about the present. In our cover story, Kevin Rudd writes that the rules-based global order inherited from 1945 is changing. Will the US and a rising China work together, or against each other?

The World Today
6 minute READ

If history is our guide, the construction and preservation of international order is no easy thing, while the construction and preservation of a genuinely global order is virtually without precedent. History is littered with the institutional carcasses of noble attempts to impose order upon chaos – chaos that the priests of ‘high realism’ tell us is the ‘natural’ condition of international politics. Yet the prescription of these same realists for the preservation of order has as its common theme, or variations on a theme, a classical balance of power, which itself has left us the carnage of two world wars in one century.

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