Category Archives: China

CHINA GREAT POWER RELATIONS PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA UNITED STATES

“When America Becomes Number Two” by Kishore Mahbubani

by Ehsan Ahrari on March 12, 2014, No Comments

In the aforecited essay (http://www.huffingtonpost.com/kishore-mahbubani/when-america-becomes-numb_b_4603125.html), Dean Kishore Mahbubani reiterates his favorite theme: the United States' number one status in the global pecking order of nations is about to be taken over by the PRC.  There is no doubt that America's economic power is shrinking while that of China is on the rise.  However, we have yet to see any evidence that the shrinkage of the American economy and its related much-ballyhooed decline is an irreversible global reality.   (more…)
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So Long, 2013; Welcome 2014…I Think!

by Ehsan Ahrari on January 2, 2014, No Comments

Happy new year to all my global friends and contacts! 2013 has been an okay year for the United States, in terms of its foreign policy in the Middle East and in the Asia-Pacific.  (more…)
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The Synonymity Between Dispensability and Decline

by Ehsan Ahrari on June 22, 2013, No Comments

In his second inaugural address in January 1997, President Bill Clinton stated, "America stands alone as the world's indispensable nation."[1]  Since then, that phrase has been used on a regular basis.  America, as an indispensable nation, underscores its dominance in resolving conflicts of all portions since the end of World War II.    It has been a major enabler of global economic stability and prosperity of Western Europe and Japan, and, most important of all, it contained the former Soviet Union–playing a crucial role in bringing about its eventual implosion.  (more…)
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The Surveillance State of America, Part II

by Ehsan Ahrari on June 12, 2013, No Comments

We now know for sure that, not just Americans, but the whole world is under the constant surveillance of the "Surveillance State of America."  However, if you are living in Congo, Guatemala, China, or another autocratic hell, you will not be surprised by this news, because most of us have assumed that the "security state" is everywhere. (more…)
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Why the Skepticism about America’s Alleged Decline?

by Ehsan Ahrari on June 8, 2013, No Comments

When it comes to the issue of America's alleged decline, please count me as a skeptic, or, at the most, ambivalent.  Yes, in the realm of economics, we are not doing well.  However, compared to the EU–another supposed erstwhile economic giant–we are certainly much better.  Yes, China is doing better in the realm of economics.  However, the zealots of Asia rise, like Singapore's Kishore Mahbubani, forget that even as a declining hegemon, there is no power that is even remotely capable of realistically replacing the United States. (more…)
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Perspectives on the Second Nuclear Age

by Ehsan Ahrari on April 29, 2013, No Comments

The threat of the outbreak of a nuclear war between the two superpowers has ended with the implosion of the Soviet Union and the end of the Cold War.  However, the threat of a military conflict escalating into a nuclear conflagration remains quite palpable in the "second nuclear age."  That is the basic theme of Paul Bracken's, The Second Nuclear Age: Strategy, Danger, and the New Power Politics.  There are not too many books that are more persuasive in establishing the argument involving the end of one historical era–the first nuclear age–and the beginning of another–the second nuclear age than this one.  It is also insightful in describing how distinctive the second nuclear age has already been from the first one and why it is going to be more conflict prone and trickier to "manage" than the previous one.   (more…)
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The Future of the Garrison State in Pakistan: A Review Essay

by Ehsan Ahrari on April 17, 2013, No Comments

The high visibility of Pakistan in regional and global affairs is one of the reasons for the publication of a number of excellent studies explaining the state of internal affairs as well that country's regional and global strategic maneuvers.  Ishtiaq Ahmed's book, Pakistan the Garrison State, is certainly one such book.  Borrowing the concept, "garrison state," from one of the noted American Political Scientists, Harold Lasswell, Ahmed develops an engaging but complex narrative of Pakistan.  His account starts from the birth of that nation in a highly volatile environment and brings it to 2011.  Since the Indian top leadership never accepted Mohammad Ali Jinnah's (founder of Pakistan) "two nation theory" as the basis of partition of British India, the chances of any cooperation between the two resulting states after their birth were minimal, to start with.  The outburst of the Kashmir conflict in 1947, almost immediately after their inception as separate nations, dealt a severe
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Nuclear Deterrence, Nuclear Rabbis, and Nuclear Mullahs

by Ehsan Ahrari on December 4, 2012, No Comments

When it comes to nuclear deterrence, there is no difference between how it is perceived among the nuclear rabbis of Israel and the nuclear mullahs of Iran.  The nuclear rabbis are the Likudniks and other right wing politicians of Israel's official community who are committed to saving the Jewish state through the use of nuclear weapons. The nuclear mullahs are their Muslim counterparts of the Islamic republic who hold similar views about the use of nuclear weapons. The chief difference is that the perception of the nuclear rabbis is deemed sacred, valid, and legitimate in Washington and in other Western capitals, while that of the nuclear mullahs is regarded as phony.  As such, the nuclear deterrence of the mullahs is not regarded as a serious rationale for the survival of the Iranian government.  However, as a concept, nuclear deterrence is supposed to be valid, since it becomes the chief rationale forwarded by Israel and Iran to establish legitimacy of their respective nuclear wea
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Reshaping America’s Military to Fight Wars in a Transforming World

by Ehsan Ahrari on January 5, 2012, No Comments

The continuing economic crisis has created new pressures and demands for reduced expenditures inside the United States.  The chief question is how to lower defense spending without damaging America's capacity to project power globally and being able to fight more than one war in different regions of the world.  The fact that no such situation would present itself in the near future is irrelevant; the requirements of contingency planning make it vital that top U.S. civilian and military leaders remain prepared for emergencies.  An added variable is the presidential campaign that is currently being waged inside the United States.  This is also a time when a sitting president becomes a target of challengers to his job for not paying adequate attention to America's military strength.  These realities also necessitate a declaration of a "new" strategy. (more…)
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The Emerging Global Realignments

by Ehsan Ahrari on December 27, 2011, No Comments

For the students of international affairs, the notion of power realignment is an old one.[1]  When it really happens, the erstwhile great powers, or even the superpowers, are likely to encounter pleasant or unpleasant surprises.  The year 1991 was one such occasion, when the communist superpower imploded, thereby freeing a number of nations of Eastern/Central Europe and Eurasia, triggering a series of rounds of NATO "enlargement," and, most importantly, creating a "unipolar moment."  The United States remained the only superpower.  The period between 2008 and 2011 is both unique and somewhat similar to that of 1991.  It is similar in the sense that it is also bringing about the decline of the United States.  It is unique in the sense that, unlike the rather quick implosion of the Soviet Union, America's decline is a long and drawn out process and potentially reversible. (more…)