Us a Declining Superpower?

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Chris, Christoferson
HIS 113
Fall 2011
Declining Superpower.

At the end of World War II, the United States became a superpower. Its strength and status reached another peak in the mid and late 1990s as the Cold War ended: it accounted for about 30 percent of global economic output. However, after it entered a new economic cycle from 2000 to 2001, the American share of the world economy has gradually dropped. At the same time, certain situations, including the “weakening of advantages compared to other countries,” have appeared in some main areas of the United States' national power. This trend already started before the September 11, 2001 terror attacks, continued during the international financial crisis, and remains today. Is the United States a declining power? Yes, Claims Andrew J. Bacevich in The Limits of Power: The End of American Exceptionalism. Opposing that is Fareed Zakaria in The Post-American World.

Professor Bacevich, A Vietnam veteran and West Point Graduate, is under the belief that the US has a problem because it has given more power to the Presidents and is abusing its military power. He like Zakaria believes that the U.S. has an exceptional political and economical system. Americans obsession with goods has permitted our government to crate this misleading empire in the Middle East searching for energy and oil resources. As a result, Americans decline to deal with two problems that could bring down the world: Global warming and production of nuclear weapons. Andrew quotes a theologian “one of the most pathetic of human history is that every civilization expresses itself most pretentiously, computes its partial and universal values most convincingly, and claims immortality for its finite existence at the very moment when the decay leads to death has already begun.”(Book 476) Professor Bacevich does not have high hopes for the United States.

Dr. Fareed, political commentator for CNN, Says “The United States is still a great power in...
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