Decline of the US & rise of China, as a superpower

Kamran Hashmi

THE history of the world reveals the rise and fall of superpowers. Allah told us in Surat Al Ina am in Ayat 6. ‘Have they not seen how many ? disbelieving? peoples we destroyed before them? We had made them more established in the land than you.

We sent down abundant rain for them and made rivers flow at their feet. Then we destroyed them for their sins and replaced them with other peoples.

’ After the World War-I, four empires collapsed: the Russian Empire, the German and the Austro-Hungarian, and the Ottoman in 1922, and fourteen new countries emerged after the war.

Similarly, the World War-II consequences, 50 Africans, 17 Asians, two countries in Europe were formed, the collapse of the British Empire, and the emergence of the USA and Soviet Union as superpowers, the formation of the UN, NATO, and WARSAW.

The world was divided into two blocks. Fifteen countries emerged from the disintegration of the Soviet Union, the USA agreed with Russia that NATO will not be expanded, later 14 members of the former Soviet Union joined NATO after the cold war.

Ukraine has the same importance for Russia as Afghanistan/Saudi Arabia for Pakistan, Cyprus for Turkey, or Sudan for Egypt.

Ukraine intended to join NATO, a dangerous move from the Russian point of view, which resulted in war with Ukraine.

The outcome of the war will see the downfall of the US and the rise of China due to the following:

• The way the USA left Afghanistan abruptly is considered the beginning of the end of the American century. The allied countries were surprised they were not even consulted.

• In the winter Olympics in China, despite the US boycott, more than 30 heads of state from Saudi Arabia, UAE, Qatar, Egypt, etc. attended the ceremony.

• The UAE recently suspended talks on a $23 billion deal to purchase American-made F-35 planes and is now buying 80 Rafale aircraft from France.

• The UAE and Saudi Arabian leaders decline calls with President Biden during the Ukraine crisis.

• The US role in the Russia-Ukraine conflict is not lucid, it is a failure of diplomacy, it will help Russia to improve its image as a big power.

Ultimately Europe will suffer economically which may cause it to move away from the US policies.

• The cancellation of the French conventional submarine deals by Australia abruptly and the formation of AUKUS in which Australia will acquire nuclear submarines from the US and UK hurt the relations between France and these countries. Although not declared the sole purpose of the AUKUS, QUAD is to contain China.

• Saudi Arabia is in talk with Beijing to price some of its oil sales to China in Yuan, a move that would dent the U.S. dollar’s dominance of the global petroleum market and mark another shift by the world’s top crude exporter toward Asia. Meanwhile, UD Dollar share dropped by 1.078 % in global transactions in February 2022.

This may be the first step but if other countries will follow the dominance of the US $ will be diminished and Yuan will emerge as the main currency.

• India is buying cheap oil from Russia and ignored the US pressure.

• The US is also involved in changing the regime of the countries.The latest remarks of President Biden to change the regime in Russia sparked the world.

China has improved its image by gaining economic/technological prosperity.The Belt and Road initiative (BRI) along with CPEC, in which China has spent around 1 trillion US $.

China’s BRI development strategy aims to build connectivity and cooperation across six main economic corridors encompassing China and: Mongolia and Russia; Eurasian countries; Central and West Asia; Pakistan; other countries of the Indian sub-continent; and Indochina.

This investment will strengthen the relations between China and these countries. The Chinese demands are quite different from the US.

The US sells its old arms and ammunition, invests less in these countries, involved in regime changes.

Chinese investment improves the infrastructure of these countries and improves the countries economically.

Unlike the US, China will never interfere with the politics of any country. China is also the biggest or one of the biggest trading partners for most countries.

China is flexing its military muscle, establishing its first overseas base in Djibouti, another in Equatorial Guinea which will pose a strategic challenge to the US in the Atlantic Ocean.

Chinese ships patrol/exercise the Indian Ocean littoral countries apart from the South China Sea.

It is difficult to predict how many years will be taken the US to lose and China will gain the status of a superpower.

The policies of the US will strengthen the case for China to emerge as a superpower. The allied countries are not happy with the US and developing/under developing countries of the world are looking toward China for investment and to improve their economic conditions.

—The writer is associated with the National Institute of Maritime Affairs. The views expressed are his own.

(Courtesy Pakistan Observer)