US Grand Strategy - As per Kaplan

Discussion in 'Strategic Defense' started by AndrewS, Jun 26, 2019.

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  1. AndrewS
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    AndrewS Senior Member
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    Kaplan's view of what US Grand Strategy should be, taken from the book:
    • Return of Marco Polo's World: War, Strategy, and American Interests in the Twenty-first Century

     
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  2. Jura
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    Jura General

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    reported the masterpiece
    #1 AndrewS, 52 minutes ago
     
  3. Just4Fun
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    A declining empire will never have any grand strategy, or it will not be called a declining empire.

    The most pressing existential challenge that any declining empire faces is the War-debt noose, where the declining empire has to borrow money to fight unwinnable wars to keep its extended control and influence alive, but each unwinnable war will only further worsen the dying empire's financial situation. Look how the British did in its Boer wars one hundred years ago. It borrowed money from the US again and again, to fight in Southern Africa again and again to keep its influence and control alive. After each of Boer wars ended, the British was more indebted than it was before the war started. Eventually, the US threw the book at the British and declared that itself was the king of the world.

    The middle east wars is America's version of British Boer wars. The US can't simply walk away from the ME wars because the safety of its dollar depends on the Saudis' support. The Saudis are facing life and death threat from Iran's Shiite religious force, thus have to leverage its petro-dollar power to use the US to fight for them. The two have been using each other, and will continue to do so for their own survival. The US, therefore, is in a position where it can't run away from ME wars, and can't win ME wars either. After each of ME wars, the Americans only find that their war debts have enlarged another magnitude.

    The British people were lucky because its currency, the pound sterling, was never over-supplied. So, they can live a relative quiet life after the pound sterling was abolished as the world currency. For the American people, they will not be so lucky. The over-supplied dollar will collapse once the petro-dollar is gone. And every American will see their assets shrinking as the dollar is depreciated in value.
     
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  4. gelgoog
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    gelgoog Senior Member
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    Well, I would not underestimate the pain and suffering the British had when they lost their Empire.
    The British were under strict rationing (i.e. food and clothes) for many years after WW2 is over. You read that right.
    The British government did that to minimize imports to the bone so they could pay off the huge debt they incurred with the US.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rationing_in_the_United_Kingdom#Post-Second_World_War
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anglo-American_loan

    Even after rationing was over the British government controlled many sectors of the economy.
    You could say the ending of the "special period" in the British economy only came with the discovery of the North Sea oil & gas fields.
    Which are now running out.

    Ancient Rome had similar issues and it basically solved things more than once by falling back into more defensible borders and making internal reforms. One example of the first would be Emperor Hadrian and an example of the latter would be the reforms by Emperor Diocletian. The US has basically next to no border issues, despite what you might hear from Trump. Only an island nation like the United Kingdom would be in a better position.
     
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  5. Just4Fun
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    You have underestimated the dollar's over-supply problem. If the dollar's status of world currency is gone, the US will dissolve, and every state border may become a national border. No one knows how many border issues will emerge after US dismantlement.

    Once there is another currency that is safe enough, and big enough to contain the Saudis' money and wealth, the petro-dollar is dead, and so is the dollar's status as world currency for international trade. Then, the over-supplied greenbacks that were previously held by the Saudi Arabia and other countries must flow back to the US, causing dollar depreciation, washing-out Americans' wealth and worsening US national debts.

    Every American will be financially distressed under such a depressing condition. Every state will have the motivation, the rights, and the means to mitigate its own financial losses at the expenses of other states, and some rich states will inevitably exercise their constitutional rights to declare independence. A second US civil war may follow after the death of the dollar as world currency. But, nevertheless, the US will never be what we know today.

    Don't call this is a fantasy, or a delusion. The disintegration of British Empire can forecast what will happen when the US becomes not-so-rich and not-so-promising. Ireland walked away from the British union right after the British Empire lost the control over India, and Scotland is now preparing to walk away too. Wales and London city may follow the suit.

    This is what you are supposed to get when you have a culture, and a constitution that promotes self-determination and individualism. You can't criticize the rich are too selfish when the union doesn't provide a bright future. (Now, you should know why all Western countries are in fact small tribes.)
     
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  6. gelgoog
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    In the case of Europe the different tribes arise because of geography. Just look at Switzerland as an example of this.
    The economies and languages basically diverge. It is a kind of Galapagos environment.
    You can make some sort of Empire out of it. The Romans did it, and the European Union is kind of doing it.
    Even China has had periods of warlordism and even separate flourishing Kingdoms. But its geography is much more suitable for Empire.
    In the case of the US the problem is the core of the country has just too much power so the other places can't emancipate.
    You could consider Texas and California to be possible examples of places which could go its own.
    But at least in the case of California it does not control its own water supply. That leaves Texas.
    It is really close to the mouth of the Mississippi river. So it is quite vulnerable.

    I do agree that a lot of unrest could happen but I do not see a separation in the foreseeable future.
     
  7. Jura
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    Jura General

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    wow,

    Galapagos

    "US dismantlement" (LOL!)

    ancient Rome

    Boers here, have fun now, I failed Yesterday at 2:10 PM
    LOL
     
  8. AndrewS
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    AndrewS Senior Member
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    The US disintegrating over the US Dollar losing its reserve status is not realistic.
    Wales and London are not going to declare independence. Although Scotland may do so.

    Plus you have to be distinguish between different places in the West.
    The Scandinavian countries are almost as "collective" and "income equal" as Japan for example.
     
  9. AndrewS
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  10. AndrewS
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    ... continued

     
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