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In the American case, however, one is struck by the ways in which Washington—from an unprecedented position— mishandled its hegemony and abused its power, losing allies and emboldening enemies.

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And now, under the Trump administration , the United States seems to have lost interest, indeed lost faith, in the ideas and purpose that animated its international presence for three-quarters of a century. But the post—World War II era was quite different from the post one.

India will never become a superpower | SOAS Blog

Even after , in large stretches of the globe, France and the United Kingdom still had formal empires and thus deep influence. This site uses cookies to improve your user experience. Click here to learn more. In-depth analysis delivered weekly - Subscribe to our newsletter, featuring our editors' top picks from the past week. Sign in Subscribe. Subscribe Login Sign up.

Context: U.S. Strategic Perspective Worldwide

Foreign Policy. Login Sign up. Russia rose in our power rankings this year as Vladimir Putin continued to punch above his weight, defying predictions of economic collapse and military quagmire. Putin scored both tactical and symbolic victories in Syria, allowing Assad to retake Aleppo while repeatedly humiliating the United States in the process.

The Self-Destruction of American Power

Russia remains a weakly institutionalized state, subject to the whims of its strongman leader, and torn by long-simmering ethnic divisions and vast inequality. Its economy is resource-dependent and highly vulnerable to price shocks. Its military capabilities are laughably out of sync with the superpower image it attempts to project around the world. But showed that in a world of weak opponents, Russia can punch well above its weight.

In the country of the blind, the one-eyed man is king. This year, their positions are reversed. As we wrote last year , Germany is locked in a long-term fight with Russia over the future direction of Europe.


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Germany wants a Europe in which European policies and laws are decided by EU institutions without outside interference. Russia wants to be involved in European decision making about defense, about trade, about migration and about the Middle East. It wants to bring power back into European politics, and to revive the old fashioned games of balance of power. Russia wants to tear down the edifice that Germany is trying to build. In , the wrecking ball gained on the construction crew.

There were also the continuing gains in public opinion polls of parties both on the right and on the left who oppose the current version of the European project in countries like France, Italy and the Netherlands—all among the six original founding members of the EU.


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It was the continuing impasse over the euro and the corrosive fallout of the eurocrisis. It was the shock of Syrian and North African migrants, flocking into Europe and setting the EU countries against one another, even as Chancellor Merkel weakened her authority at home and abroad by a poorly thought out if warm hearted response to the crisis.

Europe was less united, less confident and less strong at the end of than it was at the beginning. On the geopolitical front, India has many suitors: China, Japan and the United States are all seeking to incorporate India into their preferred Asian security architecture, while the EU and Russia court New Delhi for lucrative trade and defense agreements.

India’s rise as a global power highly likely, says Alyssa Ayres

Under the leadership of Narendra Modi, India has deftly steered its way among these competing powers while seeking to unleash its potential with modernizing economic reforms. Meanwhile, the escalation of the Kashmir conflict with Pakistan threatened to edge two bitterly opposed nuclear powers to the brink of war. Despite these internal problems and the Pakistan scare, India found its footing elsewhere in From the Middle East and East Africa to Southeast Asia, India is making its presence felt in both economics and security policy in ways that traditional great powers like Britain and France only wish they could match.

The proxy wars between Saudi Arabia and Iran continued unabated throughout , and as we enter the new year Iran has confidently taken the lead. Saudi Arabia remains a formidable power, but it was Iran that pulled ahead in the last 12 months. And in Syria, Shiite militias helped to retake Aleppo and turn the tide for Assad. Iran was also gaining ground in Iraq. More disquieting than all this, from the Saudi perspective, were developments in Yemen.

Iran-backed Houthi rebels took the fight to the Saudi-backed government in a war that has already claimed 10, lives. Meanwhile, the fruits of the nuclear deal continued to roll in: high-profile deals with Boeing and Airbus sent the message that Iran was open for business, while Tehran rapidly ramped up its oil output to pre-sanctions levels. A small country in a chaotic part of the world, Israel is a rising power with a growing impact on world affairs.

Although saw the passage of yet another condemnation of Israel at the United Nations, this time in the Security Council thanks to an American decision to abstain rather than veto, overall the Jewish state continues to develop diplomatic, economic and military power and to insert itself into the heart of regional politics. Looking closely at these tells us something about how power works in the contemporary world.

As to the luck and location factor, large, off-shore discoveries of natural gas and oil are turning Israel into an energy exporter. Israel is part of the answer. Other, less glamorous Israeli industries, like the irrigation, desalinization and dry land farming tech that water poor Israel has developed over the decades play their part.

Even more consequentially, the rise of Iran and its aspirations to regional hegemony on the one hand and the apparent support for its dreams from the Obama administration made Israel critical to the survival of the Sunni Arabs, including the Gulf states, who loathe Iran and fear a Shia victory in the religious conflict now raging across the Middle East. Israel has a mix of intelligence and military capabilities that can help keep the regional balance stable; privately and even not so privately many prominent Arab officials today will say that Israeli support is necessary for the survival of Arab independence.

Finally, Israel has managed, uncharacteristically, to advance its global political agenda through effective and even subtle diplomacy. Just as Israel was able to strengthen its relationship with Turkey even as Turkish-U. The deepening Israel-India relationship has also required patience and skill. That behind-the-scenes outreach diplomacy has also helped Israel achieve new levels of contact and collaboration with many Arab countries.

When Will India Become A Superpower? - NowThis World

It is not, of course, all sweetness and light. Israeli politics are as volatile and bitter as ever.

Indispensable India

In ISIS coup in Saudi Arabia, the collapse of Jordan, the fall of the Sisi government in Egypt: it is not hard to come up with scenarios that would challenge Israel in new and dangerous ways. Former President Obama and his outgoing Secretary of State, John Kerry neither widely regarded these days as a master of geopolitics , frequently warned Israel that its policies were leaving it isolated and vulnerable.

This is to some degree true: European diplomats, American liberals and many American Jews are much less sympathetic to Israel today than they have been in the past.


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Future Israeli leaders may have to think hard about rebuilding links with American Democrats and American Jews. But for now at least, Israel can afford to ignore the dismal croaking of the outgoing American administration. Teodor Herzl would be astonished to see what his dream has grown into; David Ben-Gurion would be astounded by the progress his poor and embattled nation has made.

Walter Russell Mead. Arthur Herman.