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The US and Rising Powers

Michael Schiffer
January 2009

The United States and rising powers is the subject of this article from the 2009 Great Decisions briefing book. The article examines how the US-dominated post-Cold War era is waning and new countries are increasing their influence in economic, political, and even military matters.

On trade issues, the so-called BRIC countries of Brazil, Russia, India, and China are an increasingly powerful voice within the World Trade Organization. And energy-rich countries have all benefited from high global prices that show no signs of declining in the long term. These rising countries are also becoming increasingly assertive on the world stage, whether it's Russian influence over European energy supplies or Brazil pushing its demands and those of other developing countries like South Africa and India in the Doha round of trade talks. The United Nations Security Council and the G-8, two bastions of post-World War II power, are also not immune to rising demands from the rapidly developing world. Schiffer encourages readers to consider how the United States will engage these rising powers as they seek a greater global voice.

The briefing book is part of the Great Decisions program from the Foreign Policy Association. In addition to rising powers, Great Decisions 2009 features articles on Afghanistan/Pakistan, energy and the global economy, the Arctic, Egypt in the 21st century, global food supply, Cuba after Castro, and universal human rights.

Order your copy of the 2009 Great Decisions briefing book at

Learn more about the Stanley Foundation effort, Rising Powers: The New Global Reality.
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