The question of a U.S. decline is increasingly on the agenda as signals seem to pile up to indicate a relative loss of power status. The last instance of such dynamics at play is the 4 to 8 October 2017 state visit to Russia of King Salman Saudi Arabia King Salman, a long-standing close ally of the U.S. since 1945. The return of the King was stressed by Saudi ArabNews as “a four-day historic state visit to Russia, which had seen Saudi-Russian ties reaching new heights”. This visit appears thus to herald the start of a new period, where a U.S. decline could be a reality.
We examine this very loss of American power through a series of three articles, which look at three dimensions of U.S. decline as perceived – publicly – by the U.S. National Intelligence Council (NIC), part of the U.S. Office of The Director of National Intelligence (ODNI). Previously, we sought to understand what the NIC means exactly by a U.S. decline and its onset. Here, in this article, we shall focus on the sources of American decline and power, as identified by the NIC, which will also give us indicators to monitor the decline. Finally, in the third article we shall point out the paradoxical character of a U.S. decline, and address the inability of the U.S. to accept its demise as superpower.
About the author: Dr Helene Lavoix, PhD Lond (International Relations), is the Director of The Red (Team) Analysis Society. She is specialised in strategic foresight and warning for national and international security issues.
Featured image by Bruce Emmerling, Public Domain, Pixabay
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Read a summary of Waltz’s theory in the Korab-Karpowicz, W. Julian, “Political Realism in International Relations“, The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy (Summer 2017 Edition), Edward N. Zalta (ed.).