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  • How powerful is the United States?” might seem like a dumb question. By just

  • looking at the US military, economy, and political influence you could conclude, as

  • studies by the National Intelligence Council did in 2008 and 2012, that the United States

  • is thesingle most powerful countryin the world. They also think that it will

  • remain that

  • way until at least 2025. So instead of focusing on the United Statesstrengths, were

  • going to focus on it’s limitations. Yes, the United States is the most powerful, but

  • how

  • effectively can they wield that power?

  • The answer is: not too effectively. For starters, the US government is largely

  • governed by an elaborate system of checks and balances, which is good for maintaining

  • stability, but bad for wielding power.

  • For example, the President is the commander and chief of the armed forces, but only

  • Congress can declare war on other nations or authorize extended military campaigns,

  • like our current war on terror, which is currently authorized under an act passed by

  • Congress in the wake of 9/11. So, right now, the President can do what he needs to

  • do to fight Al Qaeda, but he cannot conduct extended military campaigns against other

  • non-al qaeda affiliated nations without Congress’s sign off. Even if another nation, like

  • lets say Russia, were to do something that the President disagreed with, like lets say

  • annex Crimea or invade Ukraine, the President’s hands would still be tied.

  • Plus, both the President and Congress are in power for limited periods of time and

  • freely elected by the people. If the President or Congress were to vote for or start an

  • unpopular war, it could be difficult for them to stay in office. So, at the beginning of

  • any large scale conflict, elected officials have to be at least somewhat certain that

  • the people will go for it. This is why the majority of the United States’s overt military

  • actions are against outside aggressors like Japan in World War Two, rogue states like

  • Iraq in Desert Storm, or as a direct result of a terrorist attack on US soil or against

  • US

  • embassies. It would be very difficult for our Government to start an overt conflict

  • with a

  • foreign state without one of those contingencies happening first.

  • I say overt conflict, because the US does have a history of using covert operations

  • to overthrow or overly influence other nations. And it is a history spotted with messy

  • failures that act more as proof of the US’s lack of power than anything else. To hear

  • more about that, check out our video on the US’s current relationship with Iran.

  • Obviously, that is just one approach to the limits of US power, and there are many

  • other examples. Russia and China’s place on the UN security council being chief

  • among them. To find out more about that click here and please let us know in the

  • comments, any other angles you would like us to point to in the future or anything else

  • you’d like to know.

How powerful is the United States?” might seem like a dumb question. By just


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アメリカはどれだけの力を持っているのか? (How Powerful is the United States?)

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    Cheng-Hong Liu に公開 2021 年 01 月 14 日