A simple definition of a superpower can be a country, which possesses a power
that is greater than great.
In today’s world, we notice that great powers are more numerous than in a recent
past when the world was divided between two sides.
A superpower on the other hand, is characterized by five distinct strengths/powers
that we shall analyze below.
The economic power, which is the foundation of any strong and healthy country,
will be considered as the first criteria. Among the economical great powers we can
find countries as Germany, Japan or Brazil etc... Such countries have enough cash
aside to face almost any kind of recession without being deeply troubled.
A second criterion of choice is the military power. Indeed a great power has to be
able to defend itself properly, without having to rely on foreign technology and
clearly, to be credible in todays world, this country must possess the nuclear bomb.
Among the great military powers there is France, the United-Kingdom, India
Moreover, the size and the population of a country is also a factor to be
taken in consideration for multiple reasons. The fact of having a vast country
increases the chances of discovering natural resources on or under the soil. In a
world which is energy-intensive, the fact of disposing of natural resources such as
oil, gas, gold or uranium is a non-negligible asset. It allows energetic self-
sufficiency and also creates a substantial plus-value if the country chooses to export
some of the energy.
Furthermore, the bigger the population of a country is, the more laborers
are available and; if those are guided well , it will ultimately result into more work
This is a very important characteristic of a country’s strength because if the
workforce is bigger, it results also in a higher number of men in the army (increases
safety), number of tax payers for the government, consumers and more.
The size of a country is also a plus when a war occurs because it becomes more
difficult for potential enemies to put their hands on a large space; indeed we can
recall how Hitler’s Wehrmacht stayed trapped for months in the wilderness of the
gigantic Russian tundra, and finally lost a campaign that turned out to be a game
changer in WW2.
Another standard of choice is undoubtedly the diplomatic power of a State. Or how a
country can influence decisions worldwide to preserve their own interest. As of
today’s date there are five major diplomatic powers and they each own a seat at the
UN Security Council.
It allows them to use a veto right that no other nation but them five possesses.
Recently, we have noticed the emerging diplomatic power of countries such as
Brazil, Turkey or Germany but they might still wait a while before being offered a
Last but not least is the cultural power of a state. Or how a country can start
exporting it’s culture throughout the world. Until now, the United States of
America is the only country in the world that can claim the status of a cultural
As we have defined what different great powers are, we can logically reach to the
conclusion that a superpower is a country that is blessed with all the characteristics
cited here above. To make it short: a superpower has great economic, military,
geographic, diplomatic and cultural power.
After the end of the cold war, the United States became the one and only
superpower in the world . Indeed, it held all the characteristics of such a power and
no other country on earth could dispute that. But for a about a decade, China has
been showing it’s ambition to become the next superpower. We will now compare
China’s characteristics to the definition here above in order to prove whether or not
the “Asian giant” will be the next superpower beside the USA....
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