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The American Hegemony Decline Essay

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Updated: Oct 31st, 2020


Different factors that undermine the international relations of the U.S. trigger the decline of the country’s supremacy. In this concern, interested parties identify the need for restoring the American hegemony to foster the dominance of the country, especially in the political fronts. In this respect, this paper discusses the problems leading to the decline of the American hegemony before identifying the solutions that can facilitate the reestablishment of the U.S. as a global powerhouse.

This paper examines the re-emergence of geopolitics, the weakening of the U.S. defense strategy, and the internal divisions among political elites in the foreign policy team as part of the key problems that have triggered the decline of the American supremacy. However, the paper will also propose some solutions to the above problems, including mitigating the re-emergence of geopolitics, improving the efficiency of the U.S. defense strategy, and alleviating divisions in the foreign policy team.

Problems Related to the Decline of the American Hegemony

Several issues have contributed to the fall of the American hegemony. The factors range from the re-emergence of the old-fashioned geopolitics to the foreign policy challenges in the U.S. Thus, discussing the various problems that account for the decline of the American dominance in international affairs is relevant.

The Re-emergence of Geopolitics

In the 20th century, geopolitics provided the strategies for addressing international political affairs before the emergence of independent superpowers. However, the return of geopolitics in the modern times threatens the influence of the U.S. in global political, economic, and social issues (Mead, 2014). For instance, the seizing of Crimea by Russian forces and Iran’s formation of alliances with Hezbollah and Syria to gain control of the Middle East region depict the return of geopolitics. For this reason, superpowers such as the U.S. and the European Union (EU) show concern over their diminishing authority.

The Weakening of the U.S. Defense Strategy

Over the years, the defense strategies of the U.S. have shown considerable weaknesses that provide room for rivals to counter-act (Futter & Zala, 2015). For example, the September 11 attacks showed the invincibility of the U.S., as well as the presence of weaknesses in the country’s defense mechanisms. Besides, rival countries such as China have engaged in the modernization of their military forces to stamp the American authority in the Asia-Pacific stretch (Montgomery, 2014).

Furthermore, the development and testing of nuclear weapons by countries such as Iran uncover the extent to which the American hegemony is threatened to decline further. In this respect, defense policies of the U.S. show diminishing efficiency in fostering the country’s authority as a superpower, thereby giving rise to the emergence of a new world order led by countries such as China.

Internal Divisions Among Political Elites in the Foreign Policy Team

The existence of divergent views among various political elites who influence the formulation and implementation of foreign policies undermines the primacy of the U.S. in international affairs. Notably, Obama’s (former American president) administration witnessed considerable conflicts among the political elite, a situation that led to the poor handling of the Egyptian crisis. In the past, foreign policy teams ensured that the U.S. established the appropriate interventions that provided amicable solutions to all conflicting parties.

However, the divisions have undermined the responsiveness of the U.S. in international matters such as the Egyptian crisis that occurred between 2011 and 2013 (Fabbrini & Yossef, 2015). Additionally, the foreign policy department has failed to effectively manage political threats posed in the Middle East by countries such as Iran.

Solutions to the Problems

The integration of measures that prevent the weakening of the American hegemony is relevant to a significant degree. Particularly, the solutions address the issues, including the return of geopolitics, inefficiency of the U.S. defense strategy, and the domestic issues in foreign policy teams. Once properly implemented, the U.S. will stand a chance to enjoy the benefits of its supremacy around the globe, despite the prevailing rumors that China is almost taking over the superpower title from America.

Mitigating the Re-emergence of Geopolitics

The need for curbing the return of the old-fashioned geopolitics calls for the establishment of win-win foreign policies (Mead, 2014). In this view, it is necessary for America to streamline the efficiency and effectiveness of its foreign policies, thus ensuring that its actions do not suppress the interest of other countries. As suggested in the article, the move will also invalidate the need for the formation of alliances that seek to rival the U.S. hegemony.

Improving the Efficiency of the U.S. Defense Strategy

The need to improve the United States’ defense approach is crucial towards underlining its authority in global issues. Importantly, there is a need for the American military forces to embrace weaponry advancements that mitigate the vulnerability of the country from external attacks. As such, freezing other nations from developing or acquiring advanced weapons of mass destruction is seen as a relevant defense strategy that will reinforce the power of the U.S. globally (Futter & Zala, 2015). Furthermore, maintaining the traditional weaponry deterrence strategies is a considerable approach to enhancing the efficiency of the United States’ defense strategy since countries such as Iran continue showing interests in developing and testing nuclear weapons.

Alleviating Divisions in the Foreign Policy Team

The need to unite the political elite mandated with the responsibility of guiding policy formulation processes is crucial towards facilitating the sustainability of the American hegemony (Zhao, 2015). The realization of unity among the political elites is crucial since it goes a long way in ensuring that the established foreign policies fulfill the interests of the affected parties. In this respect, the unification will ensure that America engages in effective and efficient interventions regarding the emerging global issues (Fabbrini & Yossef, 2015). Therefore, the foreign policy unit in the U.S. needs to put its house in order to allow it to effectively handle global issues, thus stamping the American world order.


The American hegemony infers to the dominance nature of the United States, especially on the aspect of its global political power. The events that cemented the American hegemony include the victory of the U.S. in the Second World War and the Cold War. In particular, the military power and financial strength of the U.S. influenced its triumph in the areas of politics and economics, respectively. Over the last few decades, the American hegemony has demonstrated a considerable decline, thus denoting the country’s diminishing political power. The paper has addressed the underlying problems, including their possible solutions.

Annotated Bibliography

Fabbrini, S., & Yossef, A. (2015). Obama’s wavering: US foreign policy on the Egyptian crisis, 2011–13. Contemporary Arab Affairs, 8(1), 65-80.

In this article, Fabbrini and Yossef (2015) investigate the extent to which the personal attributes of former American president Barack Obama during his administration and the declining power of the U.S. contributed to the mismanagement of the Egyptian crisis that spanned between 2011 and 2013. The existence of internal divisions among the political elite in the U.S. and the divergent ideologies of the foreign policy team members influence the declining capability of the country to provide suitable intervention in global issues such as the Egyptian crisis of 2011-2013 (Fabbrini & Yossef, 2015). The article underlines the need for settling domestic issues in the foreign policy department to safeguard the American hegemony.

Futter, A., & Zala, B. (2015). Coordinating the arm swing with the pivot: Nuclear deterrence, stability and US strategy in the Asia-Pacific. The Pacific Review, 28(3), 367-390.

In this article, Futter and Zala (2015) underscore the need for America to develop its defense policy as a measure geared towards cementing the position of the country as a global powerhouse. In particular, the authors identify the incorporation of the overall changes into the defense strategy, as well as the integration of advanced weaponry as crucial towards safeguarding the world order. Futter and Zala (2015) assess the degree to which the interaction of the two approaches fosters the restoration of the American hegemony amid its decline. The article shows that either freezing the deployment of the conventional weaponry or holding to the traditional perceptions of weaponry deterrence is necessary for promoting the supremacy of the U.S.

Mead, W. R. (2014). The return of geopolitics: The revenge of the revisionist powers. Foreign Affairs, 93(3), 69-79.

Mead (2014) explores the extent to which the return of geopolitics influences the diminishing power of the U.S. In particular, the article uncovers the degree to which revolutionist powers that were previously dominated by America contribute to the development of a new world order, which seeks to replace the country’s hegemony that has influenced global politics for decades. Mead (2014) asserts that the vengeance of revolutionist powers such as Russia, China, Japan, and Iran has raised questions concerning superpowers, including the U.S. and the European Union (EU). Thus, the return of the old-fashioned geopolitics poses a significant threat to the American and European Union’s dominance in global politics. The establishment of foreign policies that result in win-win scenarios is identified as crucial towards safeguarding the American hegemony.

Montgomery, E. B. (2014). Contested primacy in the western Pacific: China’s rise and the future of US power projection. International Security, 38(4), 115-149.

In this article, Montgomery (2014) identifies the modernization of China’s military forces as a factor that negatively affects the American hegemony. China’s embracement of area-denial strategy and the modern precision-strike capabilities undermines the influence of the U.S. in the political, economic, and social matters of East Asia. Particularly, the rise of China weakens the United States’ ability to not only mitigate conflicts in the Asian region but also safeguard longtime allies while protecting the rights and freedoms of the East Asian commons. Montgomery (2014) underlines the need for the U.S. military to adapt to the power-projection activities undertaken by rivals such as China.

Zhao, S. (2015). A new model of big power relations? China-US strategic rivalry and balance of power in the Asia–Pacific. Journal of Contemporary China, 24(93), 377-397.

Power relations and the growing rivalry between China and the U.S. prompted Zhao (2015) to conduct an inquiry that uncovered the degree to which the contention of the two countries influences their control of the Asia-Pacific region. In particular, the article reveals how President Xi’s new model of international relations supports the emergence of China as a superpower besides creating greater suspicion regarding the U.S. inhibition. Since neither China nor America has the capacity to completely dominate the Asia-Pacific region, it is important for both to embrace a new model that upholds the essence of showing strategic restraint and the maintenance of a delicate power balance (Zhao, 2015). The new model will prevent the re-emergence of a new Cold War.

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