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George Friedman

Datum narození: 1949

George Friedman je americký zpravodajský expert a odborník na národní bezpečnost. Je zakladatelem a šéfem přední americké soukromé konzultační zpravodajské agentury Stratfor , kterou založil v roce 1996. Vydal sám nebo se spoluautory několik knih, které se staly bestsellery.

„Evropané vnímají Turky jako cizince ze dvou důvodů. Zaprvé, primárně to jsou spíš muslimové než křesťané, což není tak docela evropské. Zadruhé, právě Osmanská říše zničila Byzantskou říši, následníka Východořímské říše. Když se v roce 1453 Turci zmocnili Konstantinopole, Evropané je vnímali jako hrozbu pro evropskou civilizaci, podobně jako barbarské hordy, které ohrožovaly a nakonec způsobily pád Římské říše.“

„In Geo-Politics, a nation has no permanent allies or permanent enemies, only permanent interests.“

„Anger does not make history. Power does. And power may be supplemented by anger, but it derives from more fundamental realities; geography, demographics, technology, and culture.“ The Next 100 Years: A Forecast for the 21st Century

„The computer focuses ruthlessly on things that can be represented in numbers. In so doing, it seduces people into thinking that other aspects of knowledge are either unreal or unimportant. The computer treats reason as an instrument for achieving things, not for contemplating things. It narrows dramatically what we know and intended by reason.“ The Next 100 Years: A Forecast for the 21st Century

„America is in the earliest phase of its power. It is not fully civilized. America, like Europe in the sixteenth century, is still barbaric (a description, not a moral judgment). Its culture is unformed. Its will is powerful. Its emotions drive it in different and contradictory directions. Cultures live in one of three states. The first state is barbarism. Barbarians believe that the customs of their village are the laws of nature and that anyone who doesn’t live the way they live is beneath contempt and requiring redemption or destruction. The third state is decadence. Decadents cynically believe that nothing is better than anything else. If they hold anyone in contempt, it is those who believe in anything. Nothing is worth fighting for. Civilization is the second and most rare state. Civilized people are able to balance two contradictory thoughts in their minds. They believe that there are truths and that their cultures approximate those truths. At the same time, they hold open in their mind the possibility that they are in error. The combination of belief and skepticism is inherently unstable. Cultures pass through barbarism to civilization and then to decadence, as skepticism undermines self-certainty Civilized people fight selectively but effectively.“ The Next 100 Years: A Forecast for the 21st Century

„A century is about events. A decade is about people.“ The Next Decade: What the World Will Look Like

„President Obama dropped the term 'war on terror', and rightly so. Terrorism is not an enemy but a type of warfare that may or may not be adopted by an enemy. Imagine if, after Pearl Harbor, an attack that relied on aircraft carriers, President Roosevelt had declared a global war on naval aviation. By focusing on terrorism instead of al Qaeda or radical Islam, Bush elevated a specific kind of assault to a position that shaped American global strategy, which left the United States strategically off-balance.

Obama may have clarified the nomenclature, but he left in place a significant portion of the imbalance, which is an obsession with the threat of terrorist attacks. As we consider presidential options in the coming decade, it appears imperative that we clear up just how much of a threat terrorism actually presents and what that threat means for U. S. policy.“
The Next Decade: What the World Will Look Like

„Here is the irony: Europe dominated the world, but it failed to dominate itself. For five hundred years Europe tore itself apart in civil wars, and as a result there was never a European empire—there was instead a British empire, a Spanish empire, a French empire, a Portuguese empire, and so on.“ The Next 100 Years: A Forecast for the 21st Century

„This highlights the single most important geopolitical fact in the world: the United States controls all of the oceans. No other power in history has been able to do this. And that control is not only the foundation of America’s security but also the foundation of its“ The Next 100 Years: A Forecast for the 21st Century

„When you drill down and see the forces that are shaping nations, you can see that the menu from which they choose is limited.“ The Next 100 Years: A Forecast for the 21st Century

„... common sense is the one thing that will certainly be wrong.“ The Next 100 Years: A Forecast for the 21st Century

„Europeans have always thought of U. S. presidents as either naive, as they did with Jimmy Carter, or as cowboys, as they did with Lyndon Johnson, and held them in contempt in either case.“

„The reality is that the American people have no desire for an empire. This is not to say that they don't want the benefits, both economic and strategic. It simply means that they don't want to pay the price. Economically, Americans want the growth potential of open markets but not the pains. Politically, they want to have an enormous influence, but not the resentment of the world. Military, they want to be protected from dangers but not to bear the burdens of long-term strategy.“ The Next Decade: What the World Will Look Like

„Galvanized people can do careless things. It is in the extreme and emotion-laden moments that distance and coolness are most required. I am tempted to howl in rage. It is not my place to do so. My job is to try to dissect the event, place it in context and try to understand what has happened and why. From that, after the rage cools, plans for action can be made. Rage has its place, but actions must be taken with discipline and thought.“

„Strategy is something that emerges from reality, while tactics might be chosen.“

„The great presidents never forget the principles of the republic and seek to preserve and enhance them--in the long run--without undermining the needs of the moment. Bad presidents simply do what is expedient, heedless of principles. But the worst presidents are those who adhere to principles regardless of what the fortunes of the moment demand.
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In preventing the unintended empire from destroying the republic, the critical factor will not be the balance of power among the branches of government, but rather a president who is committed to that constitutional balance, yet willing to wield power in his own right. In orderr to do this, the president must grasp the insufficiency of both the idealist and the realist positions. The idealists, whether of the neoconservative or the liberal flavor, don't understand that it is necessary to master the nature of power in order to act according to moral principles. The realists don't understand the futility of power without a moral core.“
The Next Decade: What the World Will Look Like

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