Roads and Bumps

About projects of such magnitude as the Great Silk Road, the Great Tea Road, the Economic Belt, “One Belt, One Way”, more recently, even a quarter of a century ago, it was impossible even to think in practical terms. Declaring such initiatives and initiating their design and implementation always indicate, fi rst, the global scale of the goals and capabilities of their authors. And, second, the beginning of the transformation of the world economy as a whole. Such a role in history was played, for example, by the construction of the Suez and Panama Canals, the Berlin-Baghdad Railway, the Trans-Siberian Railway, large energy rings, logistics hubs and transcontinental pipelines.

It is also not an exception the events taking place in our days in the Eurasian continent. The two economic giants, China and Asia and the European Union connected with it by cooperation ties are turning to each other, experiencing the narrowness and unreliability of the channels of trade. Russia and all countries located between these poles expect to be not only transit gateways in this process, but equal participants in these megaprojects. At the same time, both poles are objectively interested in tapping the resources of Russia and other countries found in the zone of action of the ‘belts’ of these great roads. Among the key resources of growing strategic importance are food, water and advanced technologies. The latter gives a special and far-sighted dimension to the ‘great roads’ projects. In the long run, it will lead to the formation of new powerful projects of civilizational partnership aimed at the development not only of near-Earth space, but also of far-out space. Undoubtedly, this partnership will be able to solve not only the burning issues of development security, which have created in the past and in the present severe blood clots on a number of connecting threads between Europe and the East.

This partnership will also involve such sensitive issue as human qualities. After all, all the strife that is tearing nowadays Eurasia, is precisely underpinned by human background. To organize acts of terrorism, local confl icts, to kill and rob requires a contingent of those who are ready and able to do it. A diverse, albeit limited, but evil cohorts of those who extract the benefi ts of various kinds from these confl icts is required. The ‘brush’ of terror has a ‘forearm’ of customers, the ‘shoulder’ of the sponsor, and the ‘head’ of the planner. The power and infl uence of this largely anonymous contingent of evil can put almost the whole of humanity on the brink of war and in general survival. This dark force seeks to master the latest technological achievements. At least, progress in cyber technologies is strongly associated with everyday cyber threats. And the degradation of natural intelligence has taken the second place among modern challenges, according to a recent study of the readiness of a high-tech complex for digital transformation1. This conclusion correlates with the results of other studies on this topic.

Only smart power, solidarity and constructive cooperation of the world’s leading countries, fi rst of all the BRICS countries, and, most importantly, the formation of a generation of people capable of preserving humanity under any tension of the world situation, in solving problems of any complexity, can counter this threat.

Integration projects require the successful implementation of big projects. While big projects are carried out by big people.