Even if folks like Mitt Romney would like to promise another “American Century” – it’s just not going to happen… The world is not the same anymore. Nobody will “own” this century like US dominated the last one.
Zakaria lays it out:
In 1990, China represented 2% of global gross domestic product. It has quadrupled, to 8%, and it’s rising. By most estimates, China’s economy will become the world’s largest between 2016 and 2018. And this is not simply an economic story. China’s military capacity and reach are also expanding. Beijing’s defense spending is likely to surpass America’s by 2025.
It’s not just China that’s rising. Emerging powers on every continent have achieved political stability and economic growth and are becoming active on the global stage. Twenty years ago Turkey was a fragile democracy, dominated by its army, constantly in need of Western economic bailouts. Today, Turkey has a trillion-dollar economy that grew 6.6% last year. Since April 2009, Turkey has created 3.4 million jobs – that’s more than the entire European Union, Russia and South Africa put together.
Look in this hemisphere: In 1990, Brazil was emerging from decades of dictatorship and was wracked by inflation rates that reached 3,000 percent. Today, Brazil is a stable democracy, steadily growing with foreign-exchange reserves of $350 billion.
[..] Mitt, by and large you have ridiculed this approach to foreign policy, arguing that you would instead expand the military, act unilaterally and talk unapologetically. But chest-thumping triumphalism won’t help you secure America’s interests or ideals in a world populated by powerful new players. You can call this new century whatever you like, but it won’t change reality. After all, just because we call it the World Series doesn’t actually make it one.