Sunday, June 22, 2008

Enfeebled superpower: how America lost its grip (Times Online)

The mighty US has held the best ever hand in global political history but played it spectacularly badly. Now its influence is waning on all fronts. (© Fareed Zakaria 2008 )

"...America remains the global superpower today but an enfeebled one. At a military-political level it still dominates the world but the larger structure of unipolarity - economic, financial, cultural - is weakening.

...There is also another reason. The United States has had an extraordinary hand to play in global politics, the best of any country in history. Yet by almost any measure - problems solved, success achieved, institutions built, reputation enhanced - it has played this hand badly. How did America blow it? Beyond specific personalities and policies, about which much has been written, the condition that made such errors possible was, ironically, America’s immense power.

...THE task for today is to construct a new approach for a new era, one that responds to a global system in which power is far more diffuse than before and in which everyone feels empowered. The rise of the rest ensures America a vital, although different, role."

It's always instructive to read the overseas papers, especially the op-eds, to get a sense of balance in the news.

Though I disagree with some of the authors conclusions, I agree that American power is on the wane, our policy approach to the rest of the world must change, and that George W. Bush is/was a complete and total disaster, at home and throughout the world. Amen.

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