ity, may not ultimately survive the transition from bipolarity to new rivalry intact, a new transatlantic partnership will take shape. Europe and America will still share a common strategic commitment, but the responsibilities and fights in the grouping will be divided in a novel way.
Russia will most probably find a new cooperative relationship with Western Europe, combining its own resources and European knowhow on a new scale. Western Europe will no longer be a threat but a partner to Russia, provided that sensible leadership remains in power in the latter.
If transatlantic partnership remains central to the Western order and Russia develops a cooperative relationship with the West, then the world system of the 21st century will develop some aspects of a new bipolar balance of power with a Western sphere opposed to a Chinese sphere. Japan's place in such a system remains open, but only to a degree. In a multipolar setting it would be free to choose between several masters, but in a bipolar one it is too near to China to be able to resist its strong gravitational pull.