Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
... China quite definitely cannot continue with its current political economy based on the resources of its region alone, so it must look to project influence abroad ...

... and hegemony is not empire. An "empire" could be a participant in a system of states, but if the entirety of a relevant arena of power conflict is within an Empire, like the Mediterranean world under Rome at its height, then that is not hegemony. Hegemony is something less than imperial power, but something more than equality.

... the UK could not be a hegemon in Europe in the 1900's because at the time Europe was part of a larger international system, and the UK nothing more than a medium power in that international system.

... more than two great powers is the situation of all of the hegemonic wars of the last 500 years, so the existence of more than two great powers does not seem to be a great consolation.

... on the other hand, the weapons of mass destruction could well be a game changer. In the end it is often observed by protagonists of hegemonic wars that few participants were winners ... by the time that the hegemonic war is well underway, all that many participants are hoping for is survival. If more political elites are more convinced at the outset that nobody will be the winner of a war, will it be possible to avoid the war?

I would have been more optimistic on this score before the Bush Residency. The US military industrial complex may be in the same position as the military establishment built up by Napoleon after he seized power in France, of being an unsustainable system that requires external wars of aggression in order to keep things running.

I've been accused of being a Marxist, yet while Harpo's my favourite, it's Groucho I'm always quoting. Odd, that.

by BruceMcF (agila61 at netscape dot net) on Mon Apr 28th, 2008 at 11:58:35 AM EST
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