Flags flutter in the wind outside United Nations headquarters in New York City.(PHOTO CREDIT: NICHOLAS KAMM/AFP/Getty Images)
America's recession could mean the end of its role as a superpower - according to a piece in "The Atlantic" magazine.
Robert Kaplan writes how politicians have pretty much taken for granted that since Pearl Harbor Americans would cooperate with military missions and costs. For almost seven decades, the home front has been willing to write blank checks for our efforts abroad - building ships, planes, and tanks so the U.S. could assert itself overseas.
Kaplan suggests this tradition might come to the end; transforming the U.S. into a "shrinking superpower." He writes how the public turned against the Iraq war back in 2006; and how the Obama administration probably has about a year to improve things in Afghanistan before the public turns on that effort too.
And there's more - how about the expensive weapons programs and air and sea platforms around the world? These are what make the U.S. a global dominant power and a critical diplomatic voice. These things also cost a fortune.
Kaplan doesn't see a sudden slashing of defense budgets by the Obama administration. Rather a "gradual siphoning" of money away from the Defense department and the military over the next decade. Meanwhile, China, India and other nations are growing their forces. Kaplan writes that he doesn't think it will mean a security crisis for the U.S., but instead a multi-polar world.
And in the end, the worst economic crisis to hit us since the Great Depression could mean that Americans turn more inward and focus on the homeland.
Here’s my question to you: What will it mean if America loses its superpower status?
Interested to know which ones made it on air?
If and when the U.S. loses superpower status, we will hopefully follow all the other has-been (dare I say) European superpowers and at long last provide health care for all our citizens and put the emphasis upon arming our children with knowledge and not weapons.
Randy from Salt Lake City writes:
What do you mean "if," Jack? Very soon the U.S. will lose its AAA rating because it is insolvent. We cannot repay our debt because we're broke, which means, we'll have to bring our military personnel home from the 730 foreign bases. The empire will be no more. So once this country falls to banana republic level, the world might be able to breathe a sigh of relief because the UCA (United Corporations of American) won't be destabilizing or destroying other countries for corporate profit.
Jack, We are no longer a superpower. Now China controls everything. We only lead in greed and corruption.
Roy from Chicago writes:
The economic crisis has affected all countries globally, so we are not the only ones shrinking. But, over the last 50 years, we have turned more into a 'contract' superpower that protects most of the free world, where those countries have ceased military development. Perhaps remaining a superpower in the 21st century means redefining the role and sharing the cost.
Andrew from California writes:
I think we've already lost our superpower status: our companies moved away, our cars can't compete and people here are more interested in an octomom then the idiocy being passed through in Washington. We'll be broke for generations.
Dean from Pennsylvania writes:
All superpowers lose their status sometime. All empires get broken up, i.e. Roman, Ottoman, USSR, Nazi-Germany, etc. We will survive just as all of the others who have fallen. It may seem like the end of the world, but the sun will come out again tomorrow.