I was not surprised by the recent report of the London based International Institute for Strategic Studies that the U.S. power is fading and a weakened U.S. will look to allies for support. I predicted, more than fifteen years ago that the American Era and the Western domination will end in the second decade of the twenty-first century. In an article, “Asia’s Century” I predicted that by the year 2013, the American supremacy and the Western domination will end and Asia will become the leading region of the World. I feel that many people will agree that I was not too far off the realities. Many people did not think that this was possible at that time.
I feel that while Obama has regained the confidence of the allies yet he is not able to convince many Americans who are not willing to accept either the global realities or the fact that the American style of capitalism is not working and needs a fundamental change. These people are blaming Obama to be a socialist or a Marxist and even some are calling him a fascist and comparing him to Hitler. For too long the Americans have been made to believe that their system is the best in the World and the rest of the World, particularly the European allies, have given up on the puritanical capitalism and have adulterated it with socialist pollution. Many Americans continue to hold onto their beliefs in spite of the overwhelming evidence that America lags behind all the industrialized countries both in the field of healthcare as well as in education. Healthcare and education are the two fundamental pillars of any social system. Obama is the first American president who has come close to admitting the reality rather than continuing to live under illusion. However, for admitting the truth, he has to face the growing wrath of many people, particularly of many white people.
Whether some people like it or not the fact remains that the American Era and the Western domination of the World are coming to an end. The unipolar World where America is the only super power is changing to a multipolar World with different centers of power emerging. America has to learn to live in the new World order.
The American Era started after the Second World War. Therefore it lasted for about 60 years this is one of the shortest periods in the history of civilization. The Roman Empire lasted many centuries, even the decline of the Roman Empire took about 400 years. The British Empire lasted for more than a century. Even during the sixty years, America did not have absolute power. Actually right from the start, America ran into problems. After the Second World War, America was not able to win any major war, the Korean War, the Vietnam War, the Iraq war and the war in Afghanistan.
The sixty years of the American Era can be roughly divided into three periods, the pre Soviet, the Soviet and the post Soviet periods. We can call the period after the end of the Second World War to about 1970, the pre Soviet period because the Soviet Union was not a very big power then. The Soviet period can be called the period between 1970 to fall of the Soviet Union. (1970-1990). militarily, the Soviet Union became very powerful. The alliance with India (Indo Soviet-Friendship Treaty) made the Soviet Union the most powerful country in the World. America had to offset that by aligning with China. The last period is after the fall of the Soviet Union to the present.
The final period is marked by the rise of the Third World and the rise of Asia. China and Russia have become allies. Leaders such as Putin and Hugo Chavez have emerged who want to end the American and the Western domination of the World. Countries such as North Korea and Iran also want to play a major role in the World. America was not able to check their aspirations. America cannot change the World but can learn to live with the changes.
Dr. Sawraj Singh is Chairman of Washington State Network For Human Rights, and Chairman of Central Washington Coalition For Social Justice.