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I would define catastrophic to mean creating the conditions where a major challenge to the hegemon's authority is possible.  For example, if the invasion of Iraq had triggered a withdrawal from NATO by US allies or even a military challenge by formerly US allies of that invasion.  Even if the US had eventually prevailed and restored the system, the catastrophic nature of the challenge still remains.
by santiago on Thu May 3rd, 2012 at 04:01:23 PM EST
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