Thursday, 29 July 2021
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With the end of the Cold War and the collapse of the Soviet Union, the U.S became the world's only "hyper power". A state defined as possessing such overwhelming economic, technological, political, and military powers and resources, it has no rivals. No individual state, nor any alliance of states are capable of challenging its global primacy. Washington can project its power anywhere across the globe at any time. Power so intimidating, it should fulfill the maxim of Sun Tzu, China's great military strategist: "The supreme art of war is to subdue the enemy without fighting." Power that has, however, experienced unanticipated limitations, writes Joseph E Fallon.

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By Dr Julian Lewis MP, Member of the Editorial Board, U K Defence Forum

Continual surprises show the impossibility of predicting major events. International terrorism is a particularly treacherous area that calls for agile planning and flexible response. There is neither the manpower nor the treasure nor the moral expedient to move outside troops into every country that could serve as a terrorist haven, so those countries that receive such long-term commitments must be selected carefully. Yet other countries still pose substantial danger to the world order, and ways must be developed to prevent them from hosting al Qaeda and similar organizations. A partial solution is establishing strategic bases in contested locations to carry out sanctions or take other steps selectively and effectively. Additionally, NATO should be clear about its objectives. The Alliance should, for instance, make it well known that it has no interest in remaining in Afghanistan beyond ensuring that the country is never again complicit in attacks launched from its soil.

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