The discussion here remains open and this is one of the points where the author is merely raising a question rather than coming with a straight answer. One could argue here in favor of a positive globalization effect involving countries that joined the new economic world after a change of regime, using the example of Nokia. The company first moved with the production from Finland to Germany and this was the first time when some voices were raised against the stealing of legitimate jobs from honest hard working Finns in order to offer them to the Germans who were equally honest and hard working, but nevertheless not participants in the development of the company. The same story happened with Nokia when it decided to drastically reduce its production in Germany and to move over to a city in the Western area of Romania, a recently free country who is fitting in the world of capitalism and globalization.
Friedman does not banish the effects of globalization, because as he has shown in his books and articles, the process is irreversible and brought to a scale that makes it impossible to control. Countries from the Arab World have responded differently to the Friedmans flattening world, but they were all more or less influenced by its economic effects. Todays economic realities make almost impossible the existence of a country that is not willing to join an alliance of some economic sort. Only a decade away, Mosad Zineldin was writing about the situation of an oil rich country such as Saudi Arabia, in the context of the fourth Nordic conference on Middle Eastern Studies: The Middle East in globalizing world, held in Oslo, 13-16 August 1998: “In many aspects, Saudi Arabia appears markedly different form Morocco due to its virtually unlimited opportunities derived from oil wealth and new-found precious mineral deposits.
Its economic development plans promoting rapid industrialization, the creation of essential infrastructure, and compulsory education all combine to provide the basis for a modern way of life”(Zineldin, 1998). Today, Saudi Arabia is one of those Arab countries that adapted to the globalization perfectly, managing to keep the culture boundaries in place.
On the other hand, the very links that make the economy in a flat world depend so heavily on each other can create the conditions for a collapse of proportions when one of the strongest economies in the world encounters difficulties. Even if some would argue it is not an economic recession, the U.S. is going now through economic difficulties and the effects are felt all across the globe. The future will show if the solutions politicians and economists found to get the country out of the crisis are right and how flat world helped them with a mass mobilization to save the world.
Friedman, T.L.(2007) the World is Flat.. Picador
Zineldin, M.(1998). Globalisation and economic integration among.