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Geopolitics is the study of the effects of geography on politics and international relations. The study (or practice) associated with the politics of peoples, nations, and states, as they relate to mastering vital geographical spaces of land or water. The word was coined by the Swedish political scientist Rudolf Kjellén in 1900.

An early influence was the German Friedrich Ratzel, notably associated with the term Lebensraum and dubious politically correct descriptions of the term, causing some guilt by association for geopolitics. Geopolitics may also be associated with "realist" views on international relations, and be considered less politically correct by supporters of liberal views and globalization. Leftist Wikipedia prominently mention the claim that geopolitics, as used in the early-twentieth-century, is a pseudoscience. Recently, there has appeared "critical geopolitics", a branch of critical theory.

Condemned in the aftermath of the Second World War because it was stupidly declared to be ‘Nazi’ and accused of legitimating the ideology of ‘life spaces’ (Lebensraum), geopolitics (which all nations, including the Chinese and the Americans, practice) has made a forceful return today. Robert Steuckers, a European specialist in the field, writes, ‘The most fundamental of geopolitical principles posits that a narrow relationship exists between power and space’. For Steuckers, the American War of Independence, the two World Wars, the expansion of the Russian Empire, and the present (anti-European) policies of the American superpower are (or have been) manifestations of geopolitics in action. He claims, justly, that geopolitical objectives constitute the incontestable historical basis of nations and peoples.

Geopolitics distinguishes between continental powers and maritime powers (thalassocracies). The latter, like Britain in the Nineteenth century and the United States today, endeavours to dominate the land-based powers. Europe, and especially a possible Eurosiberia, is both a continental and a maritime power.

The conquest and domination of vital territorial and maritime spaces (as much for commercial as for military reasons) remains more than ever the centre of world politics. Those who claim that human rights, financial markets, the ‘new economy’, and globalisation have made geopolitics and the struggle for space obsolete claim the very opposite of the truth. The Twenty-first century will be a century of peoples struggling for land and sea, more than in any previous century, because the Earth now is ‘full’, with no empty spaces left to separate them.

Geopolitics displeases globalist ideologues, for it presupposes that a people’s struggle for the possession and domination of space (the territorial imperative) takes precedent over the struggle for morality or ideology. Geopolitics challenges the liberal or socialist vision of ‘one world’: an Earth whose lands are to be unified into a single homeland for a uniformised humanity. Geopolitics helps us rethink human ensembles as ethno-political territorial blocs.

In the course of the coming century — and we’re already seeing an expansion of struggles for vital spaces — there will be conflicts over petroleum, gas, and mineral resources, over water basins and potable water, over fishing reserves and rare minerals, over control of sea lanes and pipelines, etc.

What are the principal geopolitical challenges facing Europe?

1. The formidable advance and territorial conquest of Islam toward the North and the East, from Gibraltar to India. Even religion has its geopolitical and territorial imperatives. Islam’s present expansion represents another conquering Arab offensive against Indo-Europeans, as it sweeps in to fill the breach created by other Third World peoples.

2. The American effort to control and subject Western Europe and Russia. Since the end of Communism, the great fear of the American thalassocracy is Eurosiberia, the union of Russia and Europe, which would be a formidable competitor: hence, the EU’s disarmament and NATO’s extension into Eastern Europe; the Balkan wars, aimed at dividing Europeans; the Islamo-American pact (encouraging Turkish membership in the EU, etc.) to weaken Europe, etc.

Europe, in a word, is the target of various continentalist designs: occupation by Islam and the Global South, domination by the United States. The former Soviet-American condominium, which divided and occupied Europe during the Cold War, has come to an end. Yalta is no more, but we now face an even more dangerous menace: an Islamo-American condominium. Colonisation from above and from below: this will be the major geopolitical struggle of the early Twenty-first century. If Europeans don’t become conscious of it, they will disappear from history.

(see Europe; Eurosiberia)

"Political geography" is an etymologically similar term, but often with wider senses.

	The Yalta Conference in February 1945 was a meeting between Winston Churchill, Franklin D. Roosevelt and Joseph Stalin to discuss the post-war organisation and division of Europe. The decisions made here effectively charted the fate of Europe until the end of the Cold War nearly half a century later.

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