Civilisation in its current form won’t exist beyond the 21st century, he argues, because oil exploitation will have reached its peak (something he suggests may have happened already), whilst rising global temperatures and overpopulation in developing countries could threaten the security of developed nations. What’s more, attempting to “democratise” threatening states has not tackled the problem. What we’re doing in Iraq and Afghanistan hasn’t made the world a safer place.
A “business as usual” attitude doesn’t address the issue, he says, because change is inevitable. Only 500 generations ago, humans were just beginning to evolve from hunter-gatherers to crop cultivators. Ahmed’s monologue was met by some disdain from the audience who questioned his outlook as unnecessarily pessimistic and scaremongering. It doesn’t have to be pessimistic, he replied, but the model has to be changed.
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