US Military Establishment Study: The American Empire Is ‘Collapsing’

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Written by Darius Shahtahmasebi; Originally appeared at TheAntiMedia.org

A new study conducted by members of the U.S. military establishment has concluded that the U.S.-led international global order established after World War II is “fraying” and may even be “collapsing” as the U.S. continues to lose its position of “primacy” in world affairs.

“In brief, the sta­tus quo that was hatched and nurtured by U.S. strategists after World War II and has for decades been the principal ‘beat’ for DoD is not merely fraying but may, in fact, be collapsing,” the report states.

US Military Establishment Study: The American Empire Is ‘Collapsing’

The report, published in June by the U.S. Army War College’s Strategic Studies Institute, evaluated the Department of Defense’s (DOD) approach to risk assessment at all levels of Pentagon policy planning. The study was supported and sponsored by the U.S. Army’s Strategic Plans and Policy Directorate; the Joint Staff, J5 (Strategy and Policy Branch); the Office of the Deputy Secretary of Defense for Strategy and Force Develop­ment; and the Army Study Program Management Office.

Imperial hubris

As explained by Nathan Freier, the project director and principal author of the report, the U.S. and its defense establishment “are stumbling through a period of hypercompetition.” From Freier’s point of view, the current era is marred with furious battles for positional advantage at a number of levels, whether national, transnational, or extra-national. Freier explains that America’s failure to cope is the result of “hubris,” which is reminiscent of Imperial Hubris, a book by Michael Scheuer, the former head of the CIA’s bin Laden unit. Imperial Hubris also warned the U.S. about the very controversial and hubristic reasons it was losing the war on terror (hubris means “exaggerated pride or self-confidence,” according to Merriam-Webster).

Technically, the report does not officially represent the Pentagon, though it does represent the “collective wisdom” of those consulted – including a number of Pentagon officials and prominent think tanks such as the American Enterprise Institute, the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), the RAND Corporation, and the Institute for the Study of War.

Nevertheless, the report involved consultation with key agencies across the DoD and the Armed Forces and encouraged the U.S. government to invest more heavily in surveillance, better propaganda through “strategic manipulation” of public opinion, and a “wider and more flexible” U.S. military. The report states:

“While as a rule, U.S. leaders of both political parties have consistently committed to the maintenance of U.S. military superiority over all potential state rivals, the post-primacy reality demands a wider and more flexible military force that can generate ad­vantage and options across the broadest possible range of military demands. To U.S. political leadership, maintenance of military advantage preserves maximum freedom of action… Finally, it allows U.S. decision-makers the opportunity to dictate or hold significant sway over outcomes in international disputes in the shadow of significant U.S. military capability and the implied promise of unac­ceptable consequences in the event that capability is unleashed.”

The year-long study concluded that the DoD should discard its outdated risk conventions and change how it describes, identifies, assesses, and communicates strategic-level and risk-based choices. As investigative journalist Nafeez Ahmed observed, these are the very strategies that have led to the U.S.’ declining power in the first place. Further enacting these failed strategies will only exacerbate the problem and demonstrates America’s refusal to go down without a fight.

The blame lies with resistant states

According to Freier and his team, the dangers currently challenging the U.S. don’t just come from countries like Russia and China (and even North Korea and Iran), but also from the increasing risk of “Arab Spring”-style events that could potentially erupt all over the world. One might wonder, then, why the U.S. decided to support a number of these events, even to the great benefit of known jihadist movements that already existed within them.

Ahmed also astutely points out that the report doesn’t actually substantiate its claims that countries like Russia are a genuine threat to America’s national security, aside from the fact that these countries seek to pursue their own core interests – as most countries should be free to do (within reason).

According to the report, Iran and North Korea are “… neither the products of, nor are they satisfied with, the contemporary order… At a minimum, they intend to destroy the reach of the U.S.-led order into what they perceive to be their legitimate sphere of influence. They are also resolved to replace that order locally with a new rule set dictated by them.”

It is notable that the report does not list Iran and North Korea as nuclear threats — as traditional neoconservative propaganda often asserts — but simply as perceived threats to the American-led world order.

The report also found that the international framework has been restructured in ways that are “inhospitable” and often “hostile” to U.S. leadership. For example, “proliferation, diversification, and atomization of effective counter-U.S. resistance,” as well as “resurgent but transformed great power competition” are seen to be at the heart of this new international restructuring. According to the report, the U.S. is not prepared for these circumstances, and the report seeks to provide the U.S. with guidance to deal with these emerging scenarios.

In all seriousness, hostility to the U.S. military did not develop in a vacuum – it is quite clearly the sheer arrogance of America’s leadership and its incessant meddling in foreign affairs that have created a number of adversaries who are no longer willing to bow to American interests.

The “wake up call”

Though the report throws the word “adapt” around often, the U.S. is clearly not willing to adapt at all if the only way it can deal with its issues is to strengthen the very sources of said issues in the first place. If the only tool the U.S. has is a hammer, every problem has to look like a nail. The more problems the U.S. faces, the more nails it sees in need of quashing.

While some may laud a report in which advisors to the U.S. have acknowledged America’s status as a dying power, the truth, as demonstrated in this recent analysis, is that the U.S. will not give up its place in global affairs without a fight.

As the report states, the reality of this looming collapse should not be seen as defeatism, but rather, should be a “wake up call.”

Take the Syrian conflict, for example. The more places Assad’s military liberates, the more refugees are returning home and the more concerts are being held. Syria, Russia, and Iran have achieved these mounting successes even in the face of direct American intervention – and yet the U.S. still refuses to leave the country. Irrespective of crimes committed by the pro-Assad axis, if the ultimate objective has been to reduce the suffering in Syria and end the war, the U.S. should admit defeat and move on — especially once ISIS’ caliphate collapses entirely. But the U.S. won’t – and is reportedly considering greater involvement in the war-torn country.

The U.S. knows it is on the brink of collapse but refuses to go down peacefully. From the point of view of the powers-that-be, as long as every nail of resistance can be broken, the American hammer will continue to lead the world in international affairs. But even as this report indicates, it is precisely because of America’s hubris that it has found itself in this position in the first place. In this context, the report is somewhat contradictory and only further encourages the United States to provoke further hostility from aggrieved players on the world stage.

Carrying on these practices and exacerbating them is totally nonsensical, but doing so continues to be the go-to mantra of the U.S. war machine.

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  • Vidura

    It will be fine the ridiculous 650Bn military industrial complex needs to be toned down to pre-WW2 era numbers, troops brought back home and return america to its former economic glory!

    • Meatgrinder

      You are so right. My thoughts exactly. Very well put

    • Thegr8rambino

      Also remove all Zionists AIPAC from then govt

    • “When the cat’s away, the mice will play”
      The last time when you did that, things didn’t go well, especially in Europe. France UK Italy Germany and Austria fucked up the entire continent.
      You are very important and you cannot hide in your shells. World needs the America.
      And the Russia ofc.
      American collapse can bring chaos and the Russia alone unable to manage it.

    • Justin Ryan

      I agree but let me play devil’s advocate here!
      What if the military is being used as a tool to FORCE nations to:
      a Trade their resources using US dollars (therefore giving value to it’s reserve currency status)
      b follow US policies
      c allow US corporations to drill for oil or build pipelines or sell American goods
      d Not work with nations the US doesn’t like!

  • FlorianGeyer

    The US , like all empires before them, is collapsing into its own swamp of bullshit.

    • Nigel Maund

      Typical Hubris of Power that France and Britain suffered. The US has not learned from history at all. So much for Harvard, Yale, Princeton, Caltech and so on and for West Point. Each successive Empire suffers from the delusion of global hegemony like the last one did. As the Romans found out in the 4th Century, the UK in the 19th Century and Germany in 1943, Imperial Overeach is a potent force and the decline thereafter is rapid. Add in the coming financial meltdown and collapse of the US$ and you have a recipe for implosion.

      • FlorianGeyer

        Indeed and the leaders of the US Empires knowledge of history appears to be when they last had a shit.

  • Joe Doe

    America empires will collapse one day as other empires collapsed before, but still we will take long time before this will happen. America empires survives because support of puppet states and American empires will impose new taxes on those states (2% NATO states imposed by americans is nothing more than tax), there will be other taxes on colonies. In addition, foreign investment in americans treasuries and bonds is another financial support American empires. Just China (over 1.3 trillions) and Japan (over 1.2 trillions) had invested. Furthermore, huge penalties imposed on foreign Banks and companies for breaking regulations goes directory to american government. Forcing american colonies buy american made products. All those money grabbing initiative will keep America empires going for years or decades.

    • John Brown

      Joe Doe. No when the dollar collapses the USA will collapse in the blink of an eye. the USSA has been in decline for a long time since the early 1970s.

      • cortisol

        USA is the largest drug addict in the world, which relies on the goodwill of basically half of the world. What happens if this half wakes up to the fact that they don’t really need to subsidize it? Drug addicts usually don’t end up very well, after their shortly lived happy life.

  • Meatgrinder

    American Empire needs to retract. 900 military installations are absurd. We need to retrench back to sound financial basis. The world need not benefit from the efforts of the American taxpayers

    • Ronald

      “A sound financial basis” , for America , and the world will benefit by not being blown apart.

      • Meatgrinder

        You are correct. The only thing standing in the way of world destruction is the strict adherence to the tenants of the American Constitution. American patriots trying to sweep the dog mud out of Washington..

    • Nigel Maund

      The US taxpayer is being made a fool of by the International Bankster Cabal that controls it. Worse still, do the US Military understand what on earth they are risking their lives for and for who? If they did they’d hit the exits fast I can tell you!

  • Meatgrinder

    Russian hysteria in America is one for history books. The whole of the Democrat party spout such wild, inane conspiracy theories. Poisoning Presidential efforts at world peace. Russia is the adult in the room. Thank God for the long suffering Russians .

  • RichardD

    The American empire looks like one more Jew pump and dump to me, to use a stock analogy. It’s an example of the Peter principal where one rises to their level of incompetency and then fails. The Jews are brainwashed mind controlled cultists who follow their perverted, severely flawed cult teachings and reap the results of their own malice and screw up the lives of everyone that they’ve obtained control of. This cult needs to be outlawed and prevented from regaining control of the US, French and UK, governments, where along with Israel and Canada over 95% of the planet’s Jews live.

  • kurdi aram

    Nord-koreans intercontinental Missiles will destroy small devil namely israel and big Satan namely USA. AS western inteligence services have also admitted, Nord-koreans have Missiles which could target 10,000 km. thats distance from PyongYong(>NordKorea) to HellAviv in israHELL.

    • Thegr8rambino

      What about their thaad and anti missile systems?

    • Samuel Boas

      North Korea will not attack Israel. Stop spewing that nonsense. They have other things on their mind. Take your head out of your ass.

      • kurdi aram

        Ur name is jewish, Ur family name is jewish and ends with ass.
        Why u didn`T write ur family-name completely as it is. namely boASS

    • Solomon Krupacek

      herbal drugs are dangerous

  • kurdi aram

    There are a lot of rebel groups in Egypt who will be armed with Nord-Korean Missiles in the coming Months. Anihillation of israel will be inevitable. Small devil has no security there.

    • davey price

      where did you get such information?

    • Samuel Boas

      That is the biggest load of bullshit I have read today.

    • Solomon Krupacek

      idiot

  • Jesus

    Dying empires do not down peacefully, the same way a dying man fights for every second to extend his life.

    • Solomon Krupacek

      hahaha

      • Jesus

        Nu if mitocan.

        • Solomon Krupacek

          almost all of them died peacefully. lst time ussr :P

          • Jesus

            Babylon, the capital of the Babylonian empire was an impregnable city intersected by Euphrates river, when the Medo Persians laid siege to the city, they did something very interesting that ended the siege overnight.
            Babylonian Empire was the greatest empire at the time, it fell overnight.
            That analogy can be made to the present day empire, where overnight it can taste destruction.

  • Hrky75

    …and not a moment too soon. But problem with empires in general is that they always think the history ends with them. And neither Romans, Persians nor the Otomans had nukes. Also, never before in history was the world so integrated and destiny of one country so important for the rest of them. In 456AD, Persians, Chinese and Maya never noticed Rome being sacked. Unfortunately we won’t be so lucky when it comes DC’s turn to open the gates to “the barbarians”…

  • John Brown

    It’s not the American empire it’s the racist supremacist Jewish empire, which is why Israel is now sucking as much wealth and power from the USA as fast as it possibly can. If Israel had actually cared about its
    slave Goyims in the USA that serve it; this racist Jewish military police state empire would have lasted much longer, but racist supremacist Jews can’t help but to victimize American Goyims. If anyone should be worried about this collapse it is Racist Jews because when America totally collapses it will be very easy to figure out who is responsible.

  • cortisol

    Of course. The US economy, and by extension, military might has been built on the norm of global domination and receiving goodwill from the rest of the “west” and oil producing Gulf nations in the form of using the dollar, for no observable or logical reason whatsoever. Anything less and the whole steroid pumped system comes crashing down. And of course nations with competing potential, large resources, skill base and diversified economies are a huge threat as they drag the world into a more multipolar one and takes away the mantle from the US.

    To me it is very unlikely that they will be able to maintain the necessary “global domination”. My point is, if the US starts shrinking into a more regional power, it will cause huge disruptions within the already underfunded, flawed and problematic US society.

    Just look at European NATO states. Why do they do so much services and goodwill for the US without any benefit? All the stuff they buy are “Nato standard” a.k.a Raytheon and Lockheed. Why? Does Germany, France or UK have no capability to build up to par or better equipment? I doubt it. They are all sucking up for no reason other than the US state department stories about Russia.

  • NN

    “Take the Syrian conflict, for example. The more places Assad’s military liberates, the more refugees are returning home and the more concerts are
    being held. Syria, Russia, and Iran have achieved these mounting
    successes even in the face of direct American intervention – and yet the
    U.S. still refuses to leave the country. Irrespective of crimes committed by
    the pro-Assad axis, if the ultimate objective has been to reduce the
    suffering in Syria and end the war, the U.S. should admit defeat and
    move on — especially once ISIS’ caliphate collapses entirely. But the
    U.S. won’t – and is reportedly considering greater involvement in the war-torn country.”

    Aleluya… at last, they are seeing the light!