November 20, 2008

The Global Trends 2025 Report

Ron Paul: the Bailout Will Destroy the Dollar

U.S. Influence on the Decline

The Global Trends 2025 report released from the US National Intelligence Council (NIC) has confirmed what analysts have been saying for years: The United States is in the beginning stages of a long period of decline.

Much like the Roman Empire, the United States has reached the height of its dominance over the known world. The report by US intelligence agencies says that over the next two decades China, India, and independent groups will become increasingly important globally.

See the BBC report to read the key points of the US National Intelligence Council's Global Trends 2025.

Or read the entire Global Trends 2025: A Transformed World report for yourself from the NIC 2025 Project website.

Reporting from Washington -- A new assessment by U.S. intelligence agencies predicts that American influence in the world will decline over the next two decades as surging powers such as China and India, as well as independent entities including tribes and criminal networks, gain international clout. The report, meant to serve as a guidepost for President-elect Barack Obama's administration, offers a vision of a future in which the U.S., while the most powerful, is but "one of a number" of important players in the world. Describing the findings, Tom Fingar, deputy director of National Intelligence for analysis, said there would be a "diminished gap between the United States and everybody else. . . . The unipolar moment is over."The report, titled "Global Trends 2025: A Transformed World," represents the U.S. intelligence community's most comprehensive examination to date of long-term security issues. It sees a possible increase in terrorist violence even as support for extremism starts to wane.

Global Trends 2025 Report (Table of Contents and Excerpts)
Introduction: A Transformed World
Chapter 1: The Globalizing Economy
Chapter 2: The Demographics of Discord
Chapter 3: The New Players
Chapter 4: Scarcity in the Midst of Plenty?
Chapter 5: Growing Potential for Conflict
Chapter 6: Will the International System Be Up to the Challenges?
Chapter 7: Power-sharing in a Multipolar World

Infowars: Bilderberger Fareed Zakaria Challenges Obama to ‘New Grand Strategy’
COMMENT: "Aside from the new world order propaganda and absurdly glowing praise for President-Elect Obama, this article shows perhaps the most naked admission yet that the much-hailed "change" of the next administration will, in substance, be only a greater manifestation of global government while giving the impression that Obama can better handle the ongoing world-and-nation building agenda. We’ve already had more than enough of this with PNAC & co.; A new dose of Brookings, CFR & co. new world architecture will be no better, even under the guise of ‘multi-lateralism,’ ‘regional cooperation’ or any other mask of psuedo-jurisdiction."

Wanted: A New U.S. Grand Strategy (Excerpt)
By Fareed Zakaria, Editor, Newsweek International

Any attempt at a grand strategy for today must also begin with an accurate appraisal of the world. For that, the Obama administration should study the National Intelligence Council's newly published forecast, "Global Trends 2025: A Transformed World."

"The international system -- as constructed following the Second World War -- will be almost unrecognizable by 2025," the document says, owing to the rise of emerging nations, a globalizing economy and a dramatic power shift. "In terms of size, speed and directional flow, the transfer of global wealth and economic power now underway -- roughly from West to East -- is without precedent in modern history."

Some have seized on the fact that emerging markets are slumping to argue that the era of Western dominance isn't over yet. But the rise of the non-Western world -- which began with Japan in the 1950s, then continued with the Asian tigers in the 1960s, China in the 1980s and India and Brazil in the 1990s -- is a broad and deep trend that is likely to endure.

For some countries, the current economic crisis could actually accelerate the process. For the past two decades, for example, China has grown at approximately 9 percent a year and the United States at 3 percent. For the next few years, American growth will likely be 1 percent and China's, by the most conservative estimates, 5 percent. So, China was growing three times as fast as the United States, but will now grow five times as fast, which only brings closer the date when the Chinese economy will equal in size that of the United States. Then contrast China's enormous surplus reserves to America's massive debt burden: the picture does not suggest a return to American unipolarity.

The "rise of the rest," as I have termed it, is an economic phenomenon, but it has political, military and cultural consequences. In one month this past summer, India was willing to frontally defy the United States at the Doha trade talks, Russia attacked and occupied parts of Georgia, and China hosted the most spectacular and expensive Olympic Games in history (costing more than $40 billion). Ten years ago, not one of the three would have been powerful or confident enough to act as it did.

Even if their growth rates decline, these countries will not return quietly to the back of the bus. The "Global Trends" report identifies several worrying aspects of the new international order--competition for resources like oil, food, commodities and water; climate change; continued terrorist threats; and demographic shifts. But the most significant point it makes is that these changes are taking place at every level and at great speed in the global system. Nations with differing political and economic systems are flourishing. Subnational groups, with varied and contradictory agendas, are on the rise. Technology is increasing the pace of change. Such ferment is usually a recipe for instability. Sudden shifts can trigger sudden actions -- terrorist attacks, secessionist outbreaks, nuclear brinksmanship...

National rivalries, some will say, are in the nature of international politics. But that's no longer good enough. Without better and more sustained cooperation, it is difficult to see how we will solve most of the major problems of the 21st century. The real crisis we face is not one of capitalism or American decline, but of globalization itself. As the problems spill over borders, the demand for common action has gone up. But the institutions and mechanisms to make it happen are in decline. The United Nations, NATO and the European Union are all functioning less effectively than they should be. I hold no brief for any specific institution. The United Nations, especially the Security Council, is flawed and dysfunctional. But we need some institutions for global problem-solving, some mechanisms to coordinate policy. Unless we can find ways to achieve this, we should expect more crises and less success at solving them.

In a world characterized by change, more and more countries--especially great powers like Russia and China and India--will begin to chart their own course. That in turn will produce greater instability. America cannot forever protect every sea lane, broker every deal and fight every terrorist group. Without some mechanisms to solve common problems, the world as we have come to know it, with an open economy and all the social and political benefits of this openness, will flounder and perhaps reverse.

Now, these gloomy forecasts are not inevitable. Worst-case scenarios are developed so that they can be prevented. And there are many good signs in the world today. The most significant rising power--China--does not seem to seek to overturn the established order (as have many newly rising powers in the past) but rather to succeed within it. Considerable cooperation takes place every day at the ground level, among a large number of countries, on issues from nuclear nonproliferation to trade policy.

Sometimes a crisis provides an opportunity. The Washington G20 meeting, for instance, was an interesting portent of a future "post-American" world. Every previous financial crisis had been handled by the IMF, the World Bank or the G7 (or G8). This time, the emerging nations were fully represented. At the same time, the meeting was held in Washington, and George W. Bush presided. The United States retains a unique role in the emerging world order. It remains the single global power. It has enormous convening, agenda-setting and leadership powers, although they must be properly managed and shared with all the world's major players, old and new, in order to be effective.

President-elect Obama has powers of his own, too. I will not exaggerate the importance of a single personality, but Obama has become a global symbol like none I can recall in my lifetime. Were he to go to Tehran, for example, he would probably draw a crowd of millions, far larger than any mullah could dream of. Were his administration to demonstrate in its day-to-day conduct a genuine understanding of other countries' perspectives and empathy for the aspirations of people around the world, it could change America's reputation in lasting ways.

This is a rare moment in history. A more responsive America, better attuned to the rest of the world, could help create a new set of ideas and institutions -- an architecture of peace for the 21st century that would bring stability, prosperity and dignity to the lives of billions of people. Ten years from now, the world will have moved on; the rising powers will have become unwilling to accept an agenda conceived in Washington or London or Brussels. But at this time and for this man, there is a unique opportunity to use American power to reshape the world. This is his moment. He should seize it.

Integrated Transatlantic Economy To Be Set Up By 2025

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