By going through these Maharashtra State Board Class 12 Political Science Notes Chapter 1 The World Since 1991 students can recall all the concepts quickly.

Maharashtra State Board Class 12 Political Science Notes Chapter 1 The World Since 1991

The disintegration of the Soviet Union ended the era of the Cold War as well as the East-West division of the world. Developments in the post-Cold War period can be analyzed through five dimensions –

End of the Cold War and rise of new States:
The East European revolution of 1989, led to assertion of ethnic nationalism based on the right to self-determination. It was an expression of the middle class for freedom and economic well-being as well as for autonomy and eventually for independence. Many new States were created based on ethnic identity for e.g., Yugoslavia split into States like Croatia, Serbia, Bosnia-Herzegovina, etc. Similarly, 15 new States were created after the collapse of the Soviet Union.

Maharashtra Board Class 12 Political Science Chapter 1 The World Since 1991 

Emergence of Unipolarity:
In 1990, Iraq invaded Kuwait. The USA led a multinational force to free Kuwait from Iraqi control. The US President, George H. Bush had described this victory as ‘New World Order as the multinational support to the USA came from NATO, Israel, Soviet Union, China and many Arab countries.

After the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991, the world became unipolar and the New World Order implied US dominance and leadership in matters of global security. This had political and economic dimensions. The US employed “Soft Power” method i.e., without use of coercion or military force but through socio-cultural and economic influence.

Human rights and Humanitarian intervention:
There have been many instances of ethnic conflicts and bloodshed in the creation of new States particularly in Bosnia, East Timor, Somalia, Cambodia, etc. The UN Peacekeeping Force has intervened in a number of conflict situations to bring about peaceful resolution of the conflict as well as to maintain peace and protect human rights.

Humanitarian intervention refers to an increasing awareness about the significance of human rights and the need for their protection.

Terrorism is defined as the use of violence or the threat to use violence, with an intention to create panic in society, in the pursuit of political/religious/ideological goals. Terrorist groups indulge in hijackings, bombings, etc., and are usually associated with separatist movements.

Modern-day terrorist operations are global in nature. Some instances of terrorist attacks post-1991, include Al-Qaeda attacks on 11th September 2001 in Washington D.C., Bali (2002), Mumbai (2008), etc.

Multipolarity and Regionalism:
In the post-Cold War era, the USA emerged as the only superpower. However, in recent times, the dominant position of the USA has been challenged due to the rise of Asian nations like China, Japan and India; creation of the European Union; military resurgence of Russia and growing importance of regional organisations like SAARC, etc.

Regionalism refers to creation of regional organisations based on geographical proximity or on common ideological, political, economic concerns in areas like communication, health, energy, education, etc. In the 1960s, organisations like ASEAN focused on economic issues while others like NATO focused on security issues. Some regional organisations are :

European Union (EU): The European Coal and Steel Community (ECSC) and European Economic Community (EEC) were created to foster economic interdependence. On 7th February 1992, the Maastricht Treaty was signed, to create the European Union. This led to expansion of spheres of cooperation to include internal affairs, judicial matters, foreign policy, etc.

The Euro (EU); is the official currency of 19 out of 28 countries of the EU. These nations are collectively called Eurozone. The Schengen Agreement (1985) was signed by France, Germany, Belgium, Netherlands and Luxembourg. Today 22 countries are part of the Schengen Area which is an area without internal borders. The EU functions on four key institutions viz., European Commission, European Parliament, European Council and European Court of Justice. The UK formally ended its membership of the EU on 31st January 2020.

Maharashtra Board Class 12 Political Science Chapter 1 The World Since 1991 

SAARC – It was formed in 1985 at Dhaka with seven members viz., Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka. In 2006, SAFTA was activated. Afghanistan joined SAARC in 2007. There are also nine observers such as EU, China, UK, USA, etc.

BIMSTEC – The Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation was established in 1997. It comprises of five countries from South Asia viz., Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Nepal, Sri Lanka and two countries from South-East Asia viz., Myanmar, Thailand. BIMSTEC aims to facilitate collaboration and rapid economic development among countries lying in adjacent areas of the Bay of Bengal.

BRICS – This organization was created in 2009 by members Brazil Russia India and China. In 2010, South Africa joined it. BRICS nations are fast-growing economies and have significant influence on global affairs.

G-20 – This forum was created in 1999 with the aim to discuss policies relating to financial stability. It includes developed countries like the USA, UK, France, Germany, the EU as well as developing countries like Argentina, Brazil, India, etc.

Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) – It was founded in 2001 in Shanghai by the leaders of China, Russia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan. In 2016, India and Pakistan joined SCO. The focus of SCO is to bring about peace, stability, and cooperation in the Eurasian region.

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