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From Revolution to a New Global System: Reflections on the Breakdown of “Globalization” and the Future(s) of the International Order

In Taking Power: On the Origins of Third World Revolutions John Foran tells us revolution may occur whenever “a world systemic opening” occurs.  “This may be the result of distraction in the core economies by world war or depression, rivalries between one or more core powers, mixed messages sent to Third World dictators, or a divided foreign policy when faced with an insurrection.” Revolutions in Foran’s view are rooted in oppressive social conditions.  They may originate in the gap between real conditions and rising expectations of the middle class or in a long held set of grievances by working people, but in any case discontent and grievance become politically viable when a “let-up of external controls adds to the crisis of the state, and creates an opening for the activity of revolutionaries.”  For Foran such underlying conditions may be called “world-systemic in that it tends to originate in the relation between core and peripheral states or the impact of war or depression on both.”[1]

By putting relations between “core” or developed states central to the world economy and “periphery” or third world nations at the center of his analysis he draws our attention back to the national scale—for revolution has always been directed at state power, and states have been and remain largely organized at the national scale.  Such an approach is a valuable corrective to predominant tendency among globalization theorists to valorize metropolitan cosmopolitanism, global cities and the politics of ethnic and sexual minorities.  Foran’s approach stands as a corrective to the almost exclusive emphasis global governance through transnational civil society and international law, and a cultural politics derived almost entirely from the social dynamics of the most powerful and wealthiest countries of the world.[2]  By contrast Foran’s application of world systems to reading the national politics of several peripheral countries, and his attention to distribution issues implicit in the terms “third world” and “revolution” has two important effects: First, it stakes out a middle position between the world and national scales, suggesting that while the world scale[3]  is critically important, real social change is still tied up with states, i.e. at the national scale.  Second, by taking revolution seriously Foran has done much to undercut convergence theory—a necessary step to taking the question of political change seriously, in a way it hasn’t been since the disappearance of real existing Marxism in the world.

One need not agree entirely with Foran’s conclusions to see the vital importance of both of these points in deriving additional questions which ought to be addressed. In the first instance, one is left to explain what the levers of power mediate between global/international and national scales.  This might be defined largely in negative terms—i.e. instability at the margins is the consequence of failures at the centre—failures of economics and political control.  This is true as far as it goes, but it is a largely an ahistorical perspective.  One must first understand how the current phase of the world system developed, what the relation between economic design and political power has been, and what sort of political controls were developed and why.  This also requires an accurate understanding of the emerging shape of the world economy and the role played by international relations in shaping this new economy.  In regard to the second point—the revolutions at the periphery, it is not enough to characterize them sociologically.  It is substantially important point to recall that revolutions are a major means of forcing change and that they are rooted in intolerable social conditions that occur under rigid regimes incapable of compromise and democratic processes, but this is not sufficient.  These are very important points, but it is necessary also to look at the ideological shape of revolutions; the ideals that stand behind them and the hopes and expectations they bring forth—and their place in both the world economic system as well as the system of international relations.  In this respect the modern model of revolution driven by the demand for social justice seems inadequate to explain contemporary conditions.

The Postmodern Age of Revolution, 1979-2009

Globalization theory has contemplated our time as an age of “new medievalism” in which constitutionally crafted governance is to be conducted at several levels from the global to the local, as in medieval Europewith its interlocking layers of governance from local lords to the universal Church.[4] Such a position is meant to be both descriptive and normative.  Normatively, it is suggested that an interlocking web of constitutionally governed structures, may create the conditions necessary to global governance in accordance with UN proclamations of human rights, an opening to an era of “perpetual peace” as promised by Immanuel Kant in the 18th century.   Recall that Kant in his piece, “Idea for a Universal History from a Cosmopolitan Point of View,” had posited a teleology whereby human nature found its perfection in the “fixing of limits” which he associated with the making of the constitutional state.[5]  Later in his later essay “Perpetual Peace,” he was not so sure whether constitutionality was an extension of human nature or a method to curb its excesses, but he continued nonetheless in his advocacy of the “achievement of a universal civic society” which, he tells us, may come about when “the civil constitution of each state shall be republican” and founded on universal principles of humanity, commonality and equality.[6]  It’s not surprising that an in age where ideological convergence has gained such traction, neo-Kantian thinking should re-emerge in the guise of theories of global governance.  The emphasis is again on a web of law, on constitution making and on universal standards of reason (now expressed through notions of human rights).  This strand of thinking is particularly attractive in Europe where the European project of building a constitutional superstructure on top of the existing national states has long attracted the interest of a reformist Left.[7]

The consequence of such thinking, along with the assumption that somehow western cosmopolitan humanism does represent the world at large, is that we have been left largely unaware of the extent to which ours has been a generation of national and regional revolutions that differ in goals from those of the great modern age of revolution which preceded it.  Even the Right had been seduced by the picture of inevitable progress toward global governance—though they expressed qualms about it or, as was the case with Robert Kagan, they claimed an exemption for the United States.[8]  Francis Fukuyama better understood what was at stake in a world governed entirely from the top down, even though he saw this outcome as inevitable.  At the end of his 1992 book, The End of History and the Last Man, he paints a bleak picture of a world no longer motivated by value and idea; bereft of ideology, we are deprived therefore of the great driving forces of modern history.  This would become an increasingly administered world in which global rules and global economic interdependence rob politics of all meaning,Fukuyama laments.   These conclusions were in line with convergence theory.

Lost in his thinking is the possibility that we may be defining revolution incorrectly.  What do we call the uprising in Iranin 1979, the 1989 upsurge of anti-communism in eastern and central Europe, the victory of the Taliban in Afghanistanin 1992 or the election of Hugo Chavez in Venezuelain 1998, but revolutions?  They are different from the American, French and Russian revolutions to be sure, and different in substance from Foran’s model (with the possible exception of the Latin American cases).  What makes this new age of revolution is a lack of universal aspiration and a falling away of the modern quest for conditions conducive to economic and social equality.  In the modern age, revolution spawned ideology which was taken by supporters and opponents alike as having universalistic implications for all nations.  The Enlightenment, after all, was essentially cosmopolitan in its outlook.  The fall of actually existing Marxism, the crisis of liberalism, and the critique of modernism in the academy and the accompanying rise of post-modern conceptions of circularity in time—all pointed to the collapse of modernist revolution: it seemed and indeed became impossible to make claims for universal validity for revolutionary activity; in place of revolutionary modernism ideological convergence emerged, and the initiative in world affairs shifted away from Europe and North America.  The thirty year period that began with the Iranian Revolution of 1979 up to and including the administration of George W. Bush has been an age postcolonial but also postmodern revolution.  What has happened is that the sense of the historical, the historicity that developed out of the Enlightenment and was extended and influenced by Darwinism, Hegelianism and Marxism in the 19th century toward conceptions of historical process have not held up to the cultural particularism of our time.  Fredric Jameson therefore was correct, therefore, in the sense that he diagnoses the condition of postmodernity as a crisis of historicity.[9]

Consequently all of the revolutionary upheavals of the last thirty years have been regional revolutions.  Huntingtonhad it wrong when he argued that religious-motivated revolutions (in the Islamic world) were founded on “rejection of the West” rather than a rejection of modernity.[10] The revolution was against modernity, but only in the restricted sense that like European fascism of the 1930s, Islamism seeks a way out of the condition of the relativity of value that underlies modernity.   It’s a revolution, then, against the dominant readings of the modern political, as defined by western ideas of polity and political change.  Huntington is correct, on the other hand, that the Islamic revolution was far more than a movement to protect a religious tradition—as is often asserted.  Rather the Iranian revolution created a modern Islamic state[11], and it’s a revolution that succeeded and has enormous implications for the world order.  In modern political discourse, “revolution” after all had been the province of the Left.  Conservative upheavals had been classified as “reactionary” and seen as impossible attempts to stem the tide of historical dialectical development (Marxist discourse) or modernization (liberal discourse).  The liberal democratic revolution, the socialist revolution, the anti-colonialist revolution were understood as the harbingers of political change and social progress in either the liberal or Marxist sense.  Liberalism at its high point at mid-century had made peace with the exercise of considerable authority over the economy and social life by the state, narrowing its differences with socialism.  Here was an earlier move toward convergence—most noticeably in the various attempts to define a “third way.”  Competition between social and liberal ideologies remained strong, however, as both sought ways to be the voice of anti-colonialist revolution of the third world: socialist backing for fronts of “national liberation” from colonialist or neo-colonialist arrangements were met by various plans for economic development hatched under American auspices.[12]  Nonetheless such political signposts of the Cold War era were greatly diminished in the 1970s and utterly disappeared by the 1990s.

In the place of progressive modernist revolutions we’ve had a series of national and regional uprisings motivated by a reassertion of a sense of the indigenous.  These revolutions have swept the world: the “color” revolutions ofEastern Europewith its embrace of consumer capitalism and the Islamist uprisings with their desire to return to religious foundations.  Even the self-consciously “socialist” revolutions of Latin America as inVenezuelaunder Chavez, for example, are local in their reliance on anti-Yankee, nationalist populism and in the Venezuelan case in the rebirth of the “caudillo” figure. As we know revolutions are often preceded or accompanied by reform movements designed to address issues suggested by more radical revolutionary movements.  Consequently, Islamism has helped to generate “moderate Islam”; while populist Leftism inVenezuela,EcuadorandArgentinahas made social democratic reformism inBrazilandChilemore respectable.  Moreover, movements for conservative reform are present in places where there has been no revolution—at least not as of yet.  In Russia, resurgence of Orthodox Christendom and Russian Nationalism has had the biggest impacts on politics, and in China Confucianism has now made a comeback.  In the meantime in the West, Americans began a long journey back to a neo-frontier mentality with the election of Ronald Reagan, while the western European states have one after another reasserted their national roots in the form of immigration restrictions and anti-EU votes.  With some exceptions here and there inLatin Americain particular, the postmodern age has separated revolution from social justice.  This has fundamentally altered world politics and the task is to find a way back; it will not be easy.

Discourses of Civilization and the World Economy

Huntingtonhas been underestimated far too often.  His “clash of civilizations” thesis is valid insomuch as it reflects a worldwide trend toward the recovery of cultural roots and a turn away from the ideological foundations of modern (western) politics.  What lies behind the new age of revolution may be understood as an exhaustion of the categories of the modern, but the implications of this are by no means clear.  Obviously these revolutions do not amount to a one-way ticket back to a “traditional” world order as existed before the beginnings of modern history (1500) when the great civilizations lived in relative isolation from one another.  The world is simply too small a space for that solution to be possible now.  Time/space compression[13] means that any one regional solution immediately impacts all of us.  In fact one could say that the global compression of culture accounts for the rise of the discourse of civilizations because the very parochial or regional basis of such discourses has been relieved of the traditional problems of regional discourse.  When regionalism grew out of the study of the influence of regional geographic settings on social formation in the 19th century, it was meant as a critique of metropolitan industrial civilization that should apply everywhere, though it couched itself in the terms of local solutions and valorized the local at the expense of the metropolitan.[14]  Today global regions are increasingly defining themselves in terms of their pasts (or their own parochial traditions), but their message is heard by all of us; indeed the message of Islamism, for example, is not limited to historically Muslim lands at all.  It has reached in Europe and North America, and it is, furthermore, part of a conservative religious revolution that has affected Islam, Roman Catholicism, Greek Orthodoxy and Protestant Christianity as well.  What this amounts to is that all cultures and national societies are all being required to reappraise our future(s) in light of newly visible pasts drawn from a variety of sources.  It’s a babble that has yet to find its organic order.

The other claim of Huntington’s book is that returning to multiple civilizational roots is the foundation for the creation of new power blocs.  This is true in a restricted sense: the rise of China, India, Brazil, Iranamong others is testament to a shift away from the traditional powers of the world, and it is also certain that these countries seem to be gaining coherence in a cultural sense by imposing a uniform understanding of the past.  Where Huntingtongoes wrong is by his rather premature conclusion that a new Cold War driven by security concerns is the inevitable result.  There is no reason to assume that we must replay the history of the 20th century in which the breakdown of the world economy led to world war and then to a post war international order driven by security concerns and stabilized only by creating two mutually hostile and balanced power blocs.  Our reality is not that of 1933 or 1948: we have inherited a world economic system and a structure of international relations that are broken, but by no means beyond repair.  There is no question, of course, that there has been a string of failures that taken together amount to a serious threat to the global system.  The manifestations of this include run away population growth, the decline of public services, and the failure of local governance (so-called “failed states”).  Behind these symptoms lie the withdrawal of public investments and the widespread adoption of neo-liberal economic schemes.  In short, economic failure has undermined world stability, has made any prospect of global environmental amelioration impossible, and it has driven populations digging in their own backyards to recover old sources of value that can promote social solidarity.

The fundamental questions, then, pertain to the world economy, not to civilization-based identities, though my larger point is that we can no longer afford to ignore either set of concerns.  We are already forced back to the question of the distribution of wealth and power—not in a categorical sense as was argued but orthodox Marxism, but in practical sense as demanded by the global economic crisis.  Investigating the origins of the current turn in the world economy as done by David Harvey and others is important.  Thus we can see that the current phase of the world economy has its origins in shifts in public policy began in the United States and to lesser extent Western Europe to combat the stagflation of the 1970s.  Massive recapitalization of the private economy was supposed to restore prosperity for the western middle classes[15]—and it did so for a narrowing middle class, particularly in theUSA, and at huge social and environmental costs.  The  margins provided by the world economy have been narrowing all the time as capital concentrates into fewer and fewer hands, etc. etc.

Nonetheless, it is also important to admit that a large part of the failure of modern economies concerns their exaggerated ideological claims: the over-reach and attachment to utopian expectations of material abundance. There is no ‘magic bullet’ to cure the current crisis of global capitalism; no return to the fundaments of laissez faire, or conversely to old style command socialism.  The solutions will be pragmatic, experimental and, according to Armata Sen are likely to recover the insights of economists passed over during the last great crisis or even older ones now re-read in light of the new circumstances.[16] Reducing the absolute value of economistic thinking and increasing the appetite for economic experimentation are important because space is made for a more fundamental project: an investigation into the sources and insights of modern political culture.  My contention is that the rise of the discourse of civilizations is symptomatic of an on-going crisis in modern political, a situation well understood long ago by Hannah Arendt.  Eric Hobsbwam, among others, notes we stand at a point of the disappearance of the public sphere.  How can the role of the public, of the commonweal be restored to our societies, he asks.  To answer this question we must invent a new politics that takes up postmodernism as a challenge to excavate our own pasts for sources of the commonweal.  The most important revolution must take the form of a renewal or reconstruction of thought and social practices; it is a revolution that has yet to come.

International Relations and American Power

In the short term we face dual threats: dissipation of the global system altogether, a path which is almost certain to lead to global war, or, suppression of revolution and reform by a successful consolidation of power by the newly expanded club of big powers of the world.  In 1973 Henry Kissinger published his master work, A World Restored: Metternich, Castlereagh and the Problems of Peace, 1812-1822.  It proposed that political stability was fundamental to the triumphant story of human progress that was the 19th century.  He characterized it as an era of great diplomacy whereby the foreign ministers of the great powers of Europe had managed to take account of each other’s interests in creating a common ground for economic and technical progress.  In the process, Great Power diplomacy had managed to create a concert of nations and thereby snuffing out (at least for a time) the radical destabilizing effects of the revolutions of the late 18th century—both the American and more importantly the French.   In place of the call for democracy and substantive social change came the cry for “restoration”: the restoration of legitimacy on traditional grounds and the concert of competitive Great Powers keenly aware of their own interests but willing to cooperate in the interest of political stability and human progress.

Kissinger’s diplomatic initiatives amidst the Cold War era aimed at a similar result.  Détente–the diplomatic opening to China, the beginning of cultural and economic exchanges, and the extension of human rights agreements (the Helsinki accord in 1972) sought to tame –meant taming the ideological Cold War and agree on a set of mutual interests. Arms negotiation contained costs for the Americans who were able to strengthen their consumer economy; the opening to China set off the three major players against one another in a kind of triad of neutralizing the communist powers primarily through a balance of power politics (creating a triad of powers) but also by engaging in cultural and economic exchange opening the way to creating a global society though one dominated and controlled by international politics. Thus these steps undertaken by the Nixon administration in seeking this outcome——laid the foundation for post-Cold War American foreign policy, especially as the need to maintain a balance of power among rivals gave way to a concert of interests in creating global cartels later organized by American finance to dominate world trade.  This was possible because the dissolution of the Soviet Union diminished Russia’s role in world affairs and China’s independence was attenuated by its internal transformation to state capitalism and its growing interdependence with the corporate-dominated global economy.  The great illusion soon dawned:  it appeared no longer necessary to think in terms of international politics.  Hence we had the era of “globalization”—suggested by the American conservatives’ largely simplistic opposition of liberal economics and national interests.  The “free market” would trump national self-interest and become the foundation of a new world society conceived under the sign of the dollar and perfected by global institutions of governance. There two corollaries to this position: first, Kantian thinking about a new era of “democratic peace” which meant that the new Clinton administration pushed heavily for the exporting of democracy around the world.[17]  There was a growing confidence that America and Western Europe could define global public goods around neo-liberal globalization (the Washington Consensus and the periodic expansions of global trade worked out by the WTO), human rights (that would use international pressure through the global civic society backed by an expanded international legal system to police third world countries) and environmental amelioration (that focused almost exclusively on first world powers).

The second and more grandiose idea was, in effect, a restatement of Wilsonianism: the American national interest was absolutely congruent world interests.  Under the interpretation of the Clinton administration this relieved the United Statesof its obligation to tread carefully in the backyard of regional powers such as Russia.  Bush simply continued that policy and extended it by acting as if America’s renewed sense of centrality meant that it could act unilaterally, apart from its traditional allies.  Initially the U.S. government seemed to act as if there could be no serious misunderstanding of American intent by former opponents (except of course for “rogue states” lead by madmen or terrorists), when, for instance, the United States set out to help democratic independence movements in the what the Russian’s call their “near abroad.”  After all, Russiatoo had become a democratic state whose destiny was thought to coincide with that economic globalization and American pre-eminence.  When Bush realized that Putin’s coming to power had altered the circumstances that had prevailed under the hapless Yeltsin administration, the president thought that summit diplomacy and the exchange of clear words would be sufficient cover to continue the U.S.push into the former Soviet Empire.  He clearly underestimated Putin who eventually struck back in Georgia.  Simultaneously, a war was launched against Iraqin order to project American power more directly into the Middle East.  The most convincing critique of these moves came from the realist scholars such as John Mearsheimer who criticized the excesses of both the Clinton and Bush administrations and suggested that foreign policy must be less ambitious and run from the perspective of national interest, that is to say the USA should accept itself as a “offshore balancer of power” rather than “the world’s sheriff.”[18]

The main contribution from left commentators has been to identify the fundamental failing   that lay at the center the global design: the U.S.economy. Just as economic pre-eminence had arguably been central to the rise of American power in the first place, the relative decline of the United States would have telling affects on the capacity of the country to project political power.  The first version of this “declinist” thesis come out in the 1980s with the publication of Paul Kennedy’s The Rise and Fall of Great Powers[19] and remained a hotly contested idea even when Wallerstein (2003), Kupchan (2003) and Falk (2004) understood that Bush administration’s gambits were an attempt to assert American geopolitical power and stood as a commentary on the declining state of American economic strength and political influence in the post war world order.[20]  The financial crisis of 2008 and the virtual collapse of the American design for financial capitalism have sealed the argument in favor of the declinists and has set off a crisis in the world system.

Re-making Global Public Goods: Foundations for a New Global System   

George Bush is often and rightly blamed for undermining globality or global consciousness as a premise of citizenship in an ever more interconnected world, and he was taken to task for undermining multilateralism in American foreign policy as well.  What is often left unsaid is that the agreed upon agenda of global public goods had already deteriorated greatly under the administration of his predecessor.  Bush inherited a crisis in the global system: the growing repudiation of the Washington Consensus and the beginning of the end of WTO agreements for trade expansion.  Islamism became a powerful movement that undermined universal acceptance of the human rights individualism, precipitating a clash of civilizations where much of the non-Western world stood with the Islamists and against the right of the Danish cartoonists to publish critical depictions of the prophet Mohammed.  On the environmental front, the Clinton administration had failed to take on American public opinion on the Kyoto treaty and while the Bush administration was not helpful in its approach to the growing environmental crisis, they were correct in asserting that Kyoto could not solve the problem since it did not address green house gas emissions from developing countries. Suddenly and much to the surprise of globalization theorists, national politics from below emerged in Latin America, both revolutionary and reformist.

George Bush concluded that global public goods were no longer viable and theUnited Stateswould have to move forward around its own agenda of Americanization drawing in a “coalition of the willing.”  It was a return to Republican foreign policy ideas of the 1920s.  American foreign policy under the Obama administration has already returned to a discourse of globality and multilateralism, but its concrete moves has centered on putting a more careful and strategic foreign policy into place.  NATO exercises in Georgia and the commitment of additional troops in Afghanistan combined with the simultaneous withdrawal from the Middle East suggest a grand strategy aimed at maximizing American strategic interests and keeping a close watch over allies.  This is certainly, in my mind, better than the adventurism which preceded it but it calls to mind the possibility that theUnited Stateswill simply abandon world system reform in favor of imposing a new big power order.  Kissinger knew that peace may be secured at the expense of social justice.  You may wish to substitute that “the absence of war” for “peace” in the preceding sentence, but the point remains.  Constitutional governance can be instituted—you can convict a Charles Taylor in the International Criminal Court—but the vast inequities of power and the poverty and stupidity of the world economic system that are the fundamental threats to world peace and the global environment go unaddressed.

There are many international players that would like nothing more than to create a new global cartel system dominated by an expanded group of large powers.  Against this are the interests of emerging power blocs that have been excluded and will fight to gain admission to the inner sanctum of the global system.  The opportunity for a new global order may be lost as further capital consolidation and better management of global capital would take center stage.  Against this there is the possibility of moving forward by redesigning the world economic system to permit greater economic and cultural sovereignty as well as to find solutions for the restoration of the global public sphere around common concerns such as the state of the world environment.  The fundamental questions are 1) how can “globality,” upon which the articulation of global public goods depends, be redefined in light of the myriad revolutions of our time? (2) Will there be significant movements for cultural and political change around the world, including in the first world, to make this an era of reform and reconstruction rather than a new era of great power consolidation?

 

Notes 
[1] John Foran, Taking Power: On the Origins of Third World Revolutions (Cambridge:CambridgeUniversity Press 2005), 23.

[2] See Saskia Sassen,The Global City (Princeton, NJ: Priceton University press, 1991); James N. Rosenau, “Governance in  New Global Order,” in D. Held & A. McGrew, The Global Transformations Reader Cambridge: Polity Press, 2005, 2nd edition), 229-237.

[3] “World scale” borrowed from Saskia Sassen; here “world” encompasses both global (transnational) and international aspects.

[4] Anthony Payne, “Globalization and Modes of Regionalist Governance,” in Global Transformations Reader, 213-222.

[5] Kant, ”Idea for a Universal history from a Cosmpolitan Point of View,” (1784) translated L. Beck in Beck, ed., Immanuel Kant on History, 11-16 (11).  Later Kant is far less sanguine about the nature of reason, seeing governace more as an institutional impåosition of reason on agreesive human nature.

[6] Kant, Perpetual Peace, translated by M.B. Campbell (Cosimo Classics: 2005), 9.

[7] Not all the Left by any means.

[8] Robert Kagan, Of Paradise and Power: America and Europe in the New World Order (New York: Vintage, 2004).

[9] Frederic Jameson, Postmodernism, or, the Cultural Logic of Late Capitalism (London: Verso, 1991).

[10] Huntington, The Clash of Civilizations: Remaking of World Order (New York: Simon & Schuster, 1996), 101.

[11]Huntington says “modern” but I would prefer “contemporary,” functioning in our time.

[12] Please note I am not making any judgment here as to the effectiveness of these arrangements.

[13] R. Robertson, Globalization (London: Sage, 1992).

[14] I’m thinking here of Frederic Le Play, a French engineer and early regionalist in sociology and Patrick Geddes, the Scottish botanist and urban planner.

[15] Harvey, Short History of Neo-Liberalism (New York:OxfordUniversity Press, 2005).

[16] Amartaya Sen, ”Capitalism beyond the Crisis,”New York Review of Books, Volume 56, Number 5 (March 26, 2009).   Sen recommends Arthur Cecil Pigou, a contemporary and rival of John Maynard Keynes atCambridge.

[17] Charles A. Kupchan, The End of the American Era (New York: Alfred A. Kropf, 2003), 113.

[18] John J. Mearsheimer, The Tragedy of Great Power Politics (New York: W.W. Norton, 2001), 392.

[19] Kennedy, The Rise and Fall of Great Powers (New York: Random House, 1987).

[20] Immanuel Wallerstein, The Decline of American Power (New York; New Press, 2003); Kupchan, End of the American Era; and Richard Falk, The Declining World Order: America’s Imperial Geopolitics ( New York andLondon: Routledge, 2004).

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