Saturday, December 27, 2008

Is the USA in decline?

The LA Times reports:
Bush presided over decline of U.S.'s global influence

... Bush has been widely blamed for the erosion of American prestige. ...

A vivid illustration of the power shift came Nov. 15, when Bush convened world leaders in Washington to lay plans for dealing with the global economic crisis. In the old days, experts said, he would have limited the meeting to a handful of major industrial powers. But Bush realized that the world economy now has a larger cast of influential players, and invited all members of the so-called Group of 20, which includes countries such as Argentina, Indonesia, Mexico and Turkey.

A decade ago, the United States might have been able to bring enough economic pressure on its own to force an end to Iran's disputed nuclear program, said Nikolas K. Gvosdev, professor of national security studies at the U.S. Naval War College.
That's the evidence? It seems to me that this is just evidence that American influence is as great as ever. The USA has a financial crisis, and the whole world goes into a panic. More countries than ever come running to Washington just to hear what we are going to do.

Iran has been unfriendly to the USA for about 35 years. For 60 years, there have been countries with rogue nuclear programs that we would have liked to shut down. I don't see how anything is any worse now.

All my life I've heard people proclaim that American power and influence has been declining. But where is the hard evidence? It is true that not many countries were willing to fight in Afghanistan and Iraq, but that is a sign of their weakness, not their strength.

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