Things That Matter
Charles Krauthammer
Contributed by Nina Calhoun
Chapter 16
Summary

The end of the Cold War marked the fall of the Soviet Union and the sole supremacy of American in the world. However, most individuals seem to think that the world operates in a multipolar system where the various nation stands at the top levels of power. On the contrary, the planet is a unipolar tragedy with the US at the top. For decades now, America has stayed at the top concerning power, politics, and economy among others (Krauthammer 231). Nonetheless, the rest of the world seems to be catching up, and the future may be a different one. For instance, Germany or Europe, Japan, China, Russia, and Iraq are all potential nations that may overtake the US and take a spot at the top. For Iraq to do that, it has to join forces with the other Arab nations in the Middle East to form one power, a procession that is possible as they see themselves as a region rather than a nation or state. Nevertheless, before such a time comes, the US will continue thriving as the superior nation, and the supremacy might last for a longer time than anticipated.

Considering the democratic realism, America gained its power through wars. The First and Second World Wars received the attention of the US (Krauthammer 239). After that, the Soviet Union entertained the Cold War, which ended without any physical entanglement. Nonetheless, the Soviet Union died leaving the US in supremacy. The superiority also came with isolationism (Krauthammer 240). The nation got the fear of immigrants, trade and other nations. This has made the country to involve itself in the issues affecting other nations in the efforts of offering to help and to maintain the power. On the other hand, democratic globalism makes the country a captive of doing good deeds around the world. America has to struggle and plant the flag of democracy in all regions, and failure to offer help appears as hypocrisy. All the same, any form of decline for the country regarding superiority will be by choice, as the actions of today determine the future.

Analysis

The author manages to explain the current state of the world in clear terms. The mentioned unipolar form of power shows how America has maintained the first spot of power on the globe. Various aspirants might seek to surpass the US, and the writer shows the process they have to follow if they are to succeed. In the case of Iraq, the situation is a tough one that has to get a collaboration of the Middle East as a whole (Krauthammer 252). Besides, Iraq may gain weaponry superiority in the future by becoming a weapon state. This process may be a threat to the world, for without a rival or a superpower to keep the nation in check may bring the globe to a stand. Germany, on the other hand, may gain power if it works with the rest of Europe. However, their power may not prevail considering past encounters. Russia made the attempts of being superior, but the death of the Soviet Union left them vulnerable and at several steps back. Nevertheless, the future is uncertain, and another power might overstep the US (Krauthammer 257). Until that happens, American will remain at the top, and this is the author’s way of reminding the world that the US is a superpower and overcoming it may take more than one may anticipate.

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