First we take Bismarck

Today’s WSJ front-page-quirky-story is about Russian academic Igor Panarin, who has made a bit of a name for himself predicting the imminent crackup of the USA:

Mr. Panarin posits, in brief, that mass immigration, economic decline, and moral degradation will trigger a civil war next fall and the collapse of the dollar. Around the end of June 2010, or early July, he says, the U.S. will break into six pieces — with Alaska reverting to Russian control.

This is not a new idea — declinists have been warning that America is on the verge of falling apart ever since the country first came together (Alan Dowd has a good survey article here ), and it was the central conceit of Neil Stephenson’s excellent Snow Crash. But what’s interesting about Panarin’s theory (and by “interesting” I mean “wacko”) is the way he sees the country being carved up:

California will form the nucleus of what he calls “The Californian Republic,” and will be part of China or under Chinese influence. Texas will be the heart of “The Texas Republic,” a cluster of states that will go to Mexico or fall under Mexican influence. Washington, D.C., and New York will be part of an “Atlantic America” that may join the European Union. Canada will grab a group of Northern states Prof. Panarin calls “The Central North American Republic.

This brings back memories of Canadian World Domination, the now-defunct website that, at one point, was the single most entertaining place on the web. Generals Claire and Jenny, are you out there? If so, please drop me a line.

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