U.S. losing its sway as the sole superpower
(Photo Credit:Jewel Samad/AFP/GettyImages) President Barack Obama and Chinese President Hu Jintao standing with leaders of the G20 on June 18, 2012.
December 10th, 2012
08:00 AM ET

U.S. losing its sway as the sole superpower

By Matt Smith

The United States is likely to remain the leading world power in 2030 but won't hold the kind of sway it did in the past century, according to a new study by the U.S. intelligence community.

Washington will most likely hold its status as "first among equals" two decades from now, buoyed not only by military strength but by economic and diplomatic power. That's one of the conclusions of "Alternative Worlds," released Monday by the National Intelligence Council.

Rising powers such as China may be "ambivalent and even resentful" of American leadership, but they're more interested in holding positions of influence in organizations such as the United Nations and the International Monetary Fund than assuming that role, the report found.

"Nevertheless, with the rapid rise of other countries, the 'unipolar moment' is over, and "Pax Americana" - the era of American ascendancy in international politics that began in 1945 - is fast winding down," the report states.

Monday's 166-page report is the fifth in the "Global Trends 2030" series by the council, an arm of the Office of the Director of National Intelligence.

It doesn't make specific predictions, but says that the world is at a "critical juncture" in which technology is advancing, competition for resources is growing and a middle class is emerging in countries around the world.

"Our effort is to encourage decision makers - whether in government or outside - to think and plan for the long term so that negative futures do not occur and positive ones have a better chance of unfolding," council Chairman Christopher Kojm wrote in the report's preface.

The report lays out a series of possible futures, both optimistic and pessimistic, from a world in which globalization has stalled and the risk of war has gone up to one in which collaboration between Washington and Beijing produces a rapid increase in worldwide prosperity.

Technological advances will give individuals more freedom, but also have the potential to provide small groups with the kind of destructive capabilities now available only to nations.

"With more widespread access to lethal and destructive technologies, individuals who are experts in such key areas as cyber systems might sell their services to the highest bidder," Kojm said during a briefing on the report. "Terrorists might focus less on mass casualties and more on causing widespread economic and financial disruptions."

Economic power is likely to shift away from the United States and Europe to China, India and Southeast Asian countries, and Africa will see an urban boom as people move to cities at a faster rate, the report concludes. But those developments will add pressure to deal with environmental issues such as more frequent or severe droughts and the projected rise in sea levels due to a warming climate.

"Under most scenarios - except the most dire - significant strides in reducing extreme poverty will be achieved by 2030," the report notes. The numbers of people living in poverty is likely to drop sharply in East and South Asia, the Middle East and North Africa, with sub-Saharan Africa lagging behind.

Kojm said, "economic growth, the rise of the global middle class, greater educational obtainment and better health care mean –for the first time in human history - the majority of the world's population will no longer be impoverished."

But perhaps the biggest question mark in the report is the Middle East.

The region "will be a very different place" in 2030, the authors conclude, "but the possibilities run a wide gamut from fragile growth and development to chronic instability and potential regional conflicts." The youth boom that has driven the Arab Spring revolts will give way to an aging population, while shifts in energy consumption may force oil-rich Middle Eastern economies to find new sources of income.

The growth of middle classes will increase demand for political and social change, but that could be a mixed blessing: "Historically, the rise of middle classes has led to populism and dictatorships as well as pressures for greater democracy," the authors noted. Meanwhile, that global growth "disguises growing pressures on the middle class in Western economies," including international competition for higher-skilled jobs.

The growing middle class will also increase demand for water and food by more than 35% over the next couple of decades the report indicates. Advancements in key technologies such as genetically modified crops, precision agriculture and water irrigation techniques could for the most part help prevent scarcity.

An increase in the earning power, education and political clout of women "will be a key driver of success for many countries," with gender gaps closing fastest in East Asia and Latin America, the report found.

And India is likely to be in the same position in 2030 that China is today, it concludes.

"India's rate of economic growth is likely to rise while China's slows," the authors found. China's 8%-10% growth "will probably be a distant memory by 2030," it notes. And India's economic advantage over regional nuclear rival Pakistan is likely to grow, roughly doubling the comparative size of its economy.

Pam Benson contributed to this report

soundoff (1,655 Responses)
  1. Greryclilteta

    sildenafil mechanism of action https://viaagrraa.com/# – roman sildenafil sildenafil reviews sildenafil 50 mg price https://canadassildenafil.com/#

    May 24, 2021 at 2:22 pm | Reply
  2. Greryclilteta

    https://canadasildenafill.com/# sildenafil 20 mg reviews sildenafil dosage sildenafil reviews sildenafil interactions

    May 24, 2021 at 1:21 pm | Reply
  3. Greryclilteta

    sildenafil alcohol sildenafil sildenafil 100mg price sildenafil citrate tablets 100mg https://v1agrasildenafil.com/#

    May 24, 2021 at 12:18 pm | Reply
  4. Greryclilteta

    sildenafil reviews sildenafil brand name how does sildenafil work sildenafil vs viagra https://canadasildenafill.com/# – what is sildenafil used for

    May 24, 2021 at 11:18 am | Reply
  5. Greryclilteta

    sildenafil generic https://canadaviiagra.com/# – sildenafil precio sildenafil citrate 100mg sildenafil 100mg coupon https://canadaviigra.com/#

    May 24, 2021 at 8:23 am | Reply
  6. Google Marketing Services


    May 24, 2021 at 7:51 am | Reply
  7. Greryclilteta

    hims sildenafil sildenafil citrate tablets 100mg sildenafil cost https://v1agrasildenafil.com/#

    May 24, 2021 at 7:25 am | Reply
  8. Greryclilteta

    https://canadaviiagra.com/# sildenafil online how long does it take for sildenafil to work sildenafil contraindications sildenafil 100mg coupon

    May 24, 2021 at 6:21 am | Reply
  9. Greryclilteta

    roman sildenafil https://canadinviagr.com/# sildenafil online how much sildenafil should i take how long does sildenafil last

    May 24, 2021 at 5:20 am | Reply
  10. Greryclilteta

    https://canadavyagra.com/# sildenafil citrate tablets 100mg https://veagrapill.com/# – sildenafil citrate 50mg how to take sildenafil

    May 24, 2021 at 4:19 am | Reply
  11. Greryclilteta

    https://canadasildenafill.com/# sildenafil 50 mg https://v1agrasildenafil.com/# – sildenafil 20 mg reviews sildenafil 100 mg

    May 24, 2021 at 3:20 am | Reply
  12. Greryclilteta

    https://v1agrasildenafil.com/# sildenafil 100mg sildenafil 100mg review sildenafil side effects sildenafil interactions

    May 24, 2021 at 2:17 am | Reply
  13. Greryclilteta

    how to take sildenafil sildenafil online does sildenafil work sildenafil citrate https://viagsildenafil.com/# – sildenafil for dogs

    May 24, 2021 at 1:25 am | Reply
  14. Video Marketing Service

    Way cool! Some very valid points! I appreciate you penning this article and also the rest of the website is really good.


    May 24, 2021 at 12:57 am | Reply
  15. Greryclilteta

    sildenafil 100mg review https://canadianssildenafil.com/# – sildenafil over the counter what is sildenafil used for sildenafil vs cialis sildenafil 20 mg not working

    May 24, 2021 at 12:25 am | Reply
  16. Content Marketing Services

    Howdy! I just wish to offer you a big thumbs up for your great info you have right here on this post. I'll be returning to your site for more soon.


    May 23, 2021 at 11:33 pm | Reply
  17. Greryclilteta

    sildenafil price https://v1agrapill.com/# – how long does it take for sildenafil to take effect does sildenafil work sildenafil para que es https://v1agrapill.com/#

    May 23, 2021 at 11:27 pm | Reply
  18. Greryclilteta

    sildenafil tablets 100mg how much sildenafil should i take sildenafil price sildenafil 100mg https://vviagrraa.com/#

    May 23, 2021 at 10:26 pm | Reply
  19. Greryclilteta

    how much sildenafil should i take sildenafil 30 mg what is sildenafil citrate sildenafil 50 mg tablet https://ediagra.com/#

    May 23, 2021 at 7:30 pm | Reply
  20. Greryclilteta

    sildenafil citrate 50mg https://vviagrraa.com/# what is sildenafil used for roman sildenafil sildenafil dosage timing

    May 23, 2021 at 5:22 pm | Reply
  21. Greryclilteta

    https://canadaviigra.com/# sildenafil uses sildenafil 100mg coupon sildenafil walmart sildenafil precio

    May 23, 2021 at 4:21 pm | Reply
  22. Greryclilteta

    sildenafil or tadalafil sildenafil 20 mg dosage sildenafil interactions sildenafil otc https://canadasildenaf1l.com/#

    May 23, 2021 at 3:19 pm | Reply
  23. Greryclilteta

    sildenafil 100 mg sildenafil warnings sildenafil goodrx sildenafil and alcohol https://canadasildenafill.com/# – how does sildenafil work

    May 23, 2021 at 2:23 pm | Reply
  24. Greryclilteta

    sildenafil citrate tablets 100mg https://viag7asildenafil.com/# – sildenafil vs viagra sildenafil precio sildenafil citrate side effects https://v1agrapill.com/#

    May 23, 2021 at 1:22 pm | Reply
  25. Greryclilteta

    sildenafil vs viagra https://viagsildenafil.com/# – sildenafil 100 mg sildenafil 50 mg tablet sildenafil para que es https://vviagrraa.com/#

    May 23, 2021 at 12:16 pm | Reply
  26. Greryclilteta

    how does sildenafil work https://v1agrasildenafil.com/# sildenafil alcohol sildenafil or tadalafil buy sildenafil online

    May 23, 2021 at 11:21 am | Reply
  27. RV Bedroom Orange County


    May 23, 2021 at 11:13 am | Reply
  28. Greryclilteta

    sildenafil 100mg price at walmart https://viiagrapill.com/# sildenafil for women sildenafil 60mg sildenafil vs cialis

    May 23, 2021 at 10:26 am | Reply
  29. camper van restoration


    May 23, 2021 at 8:10 am | Reply
  30. Greryclilteta

    https://prednisoloneacetateophthalmic.com/ prednisone taper prednisone side effects in men prednisone and covid vaccine side effects for prednisone

    May 23, 2021 at 6:00 am | Reply
  31. Greryclilteta

    prednisone and alcohol does prednisone raise blood pressure steroids side effects prednisolone warnings https://predforteprednisone.com/

    May 23, 2021 at 5:35 am | Reply
  32. RV Mattresses Orange County

    Everything is very open with a clear explanation of the challenges. It was truly informative. Your website is extremely helpful. Many thanks for sharing!


    May 23, 2021 at 5:21 am | Reply
  33. Internet Marketing Firm


    May 23, 2021 at 4:56 am | Reply
  34. Digital Marketing Agency

    Pretty! This was an incredibly wonderful post. Thank you for providing these details.


    May 22, 2021 at 7:54 pm | Reply
  35. oc towing mission viejo


    May 22, 2021 at 5:18 pm | Reply
  36. motorhome inspection near me

    I enjoy looking through an article that will make people think. Also, thank you for permitting me to comment!


    May 22, 2021 at 2:21 pm | Reply
  37. bus body repair


    May 22, 2021 at 1:47 pm | Reply
  38. Internet Marketing Services


    May 22, 2021 at 1:45 pm | Reply
  39. Social Media Marketing Specialist

    After exploring a handful of the articles on your web page, I seriously like your technique of blogging. I book-marked it to my bookmark site list and will be checking back soon. Please visit my web site as well and let me know what you think.


    May 22, 2021 at 11:49 am | Reply
  40. RV Leak Orange County


    May 22, 2021 at 11:13 am | Reply
  41. RV Renovation California


    May 22, 2021 at 10:17 am | Reply
  42. RV Inspection Los Angeles


    May 22, 2021 at 9:09 am | Reply
  43. Google Marketing Companies

    An intriguing discussion is definitely worth comment. I do believe that you ought to publish more on this subject, it might not be a taboo matter but usually people do not discuss such subjects. To the next! Many thanks!!


    May 22, 2021 at 6:24 am | Reply
  44. repair blinds near me


    May 22, 2021 at 2:56 am | Reply
  45. Greryclilteta

    isotretinoina https://isotroinisotretinoin.com/ isotretinoin roaccutane side effects how does accutane work

    May 22, 2021 at 2:34 am | Reply
  46. ac shop near me


    May 22, 2021 at 1:40 am | Reply
  47. RV Parts Los Angeles


    May 22, 2021 at 1:01 am | Reply
  48. oc trailers & rvs inc

    Hi, I do think this is a great website. I stumbledupon it 😉 I am going to return yet again since i have book marked it. Money and freedom is the greatest way to change, may you be rich and continue to guide others.


    May 22, 2021 at 12:57 am | Reply
  49. RV Interior Remodeling Near Me

    I’m amazed, I must say. Seldom do I come across a blog that’s both equally educative and entertaining, and without a doubt, you've hit the nail on the head. The issue is something which too few men and women are speaking intelligently about. I'm very happy I stumbled across this in my search for something regarding this.


    May 22, 2021 at 12:54 am | Reply
  50. Google Marketing Specialist


    May 21, 2021 at 4:52 pm | Reply
  51. RV Interior Designer Orange County

    I used to be able to find good information from your blog articles.


    May 21, 2021 at 2:13 pm | Reply
  52. camper van near me


    May 21, 2021 at 1:29 pm | Reply
  53. Greryclilteta

    roaccutane isotretinoin accutane buy accutane https://isotroinisotretinoin.com/

    May 21, 2021 at 1:12 pm | Reply
  54. motorhome refurbishment


    May 21, 2021 at 11:39 am | Reply
  55. Social Media Marketing Agency


    May 21, 2021 at 10:38 am | Reply
  56. RV Upholstery Riverside

    Having read this I believed it was rather informative. I appreciate you spending some time and effort to put this short article together. I once again find myself spending way too much time both reading and commenting. But so what, it was still worth it!


    May 21, 2021 at 9:53 am | Reply
  57. RV Interior Designer Orange County


    May 21, 2021 at 7:45 am | Reply
  58. Sprinter Repair


    May 21, 2021 at 7:18 am | Reply
  59. furniture restoration orange county

    May I simply just say what a relief to discover someone that genuinely understands what they are talking about over the internet. You actually realize how to bring a problem to light and make it important. More people ought to read this and understand this side of your story. I was surprised that you are not more popular since you most certainly possess the gift.


    May 21, 2021 at 6:46 am | Reply
  60. buy isotretinoine

    accutane ipledge https://sotretisotretinoin.com/# buy isotretinoin accutane before and after

    May 21, 2021 at 5:39 am | Reply
  61. RV Storage Riverside

    Oh my goodness! Awesome article dude! Thanks, However I am experiencing problems with your RSS. I don’t understand why I am unable to subscribe to it. Is there anybody having identical RSS problems? Anyone who knows the answer can you kindly respond? Thanx!!


    May 21, 2021 at 4:59 am | Reply
  62. RV Furniture Los Angeles


    May 21, 2021 at 4:54 am | Reply
  63. 2006 Sprinter 3500 Repair Near Me


    May 21, 2021 at 3:31 am | Reply
  64. accutane for acne

    buy isotretinoin https://sotretisotretinoin.com/# accutane for acne accutune

    May 21, 2021 at 2:45 am | Reply
  65. horse hauler motorhome


    May 21, 2021 at 2:23 am | Reply
  66. Diesel Sprinter Repair Service


    May 21, 2021 at 2:08 am | Reply
  67. ibs collision center


    May 20, 2021 at 11:42 pm | Reply
  68. sound system repair near me


    May 20, 2021 at 10:43 pm | Reply
  69. horse trailer window replacement

    Great information. Lucky me I ran across your blog by chance (stumbleupon). I've saved it for later!


    May 20, 2021 at 7:58 pm | Reply
  70. rv solar near me


    May 20, 2021 at 7:54 pm | Reply
  71. how to repair a slide out on a travel trailer

    This site was... how do I say it? Relevant!! Finally I've found something that helped me. Cheers!


    May 20, 2021 at 6:40 pm | Reply
  72. Social Media Marketing Company

    You are so awesome! I do not think I've truly read through anything like that before. So wonderful to find another person with a few original thoughts on this issue. Really.. thank you for starting this up. This web site is one thing that is required on the web, someone with a bit of originality!


    May 20, 2021 at 5:39 pm | Reply
  73. Van Wheelchair Lift Repair


    May 20, 2021 at 4:57 pm | Reply
  74. roaccutane

    accutane medication https://tretivaisotretinoin.com/# isotretinoin

    May 20, 2021 at 3:15 pm | Reply
  75. RV Shower Riverside


    May 20, 2021 at 2:12 pm | Reply
  76. travel trailer remodeling companies

    Can I simply say what a comfort to find someone that really knows what they're discussing on the net. You definitely understand how to bring an issue to light and make it important. A lot more people really need to read this and understand this side of your story. I was surprised you are not more popular because you surely have the gift.


    May 20, 2021 at 1:33 pm | Reply
  77. rv renovation companies near me

    Everything is very open with a really clear clarification of the issues. It was really informative. Your site is very helpful. Many thanks for sharing!


    May 20, 2021 at 1:29 pm | Reply
  78. Content Marketing Business


    May 20, 2021 at 12:11 pm | Reply
  79. Social Media Marketing Near Me


    May 20, 2021 at 10:54 am | Reply
  80. Social Media Marketing Agencies Near Me


    May 20, 2021 at 8:08 am | Reply
  81. Internet Marketing Service

    This is the perfect website for anybody who really wants to find out about this topic. You understand so much its almost hard to argue with you (not that I personally would want to…HaHa). You certainly put a new spin on a subject that has been written about for many years. Excellent stuff, just excellent!


    May 20, 2021 at 6:53 am | Reply
  82. Content Marketing Services


    May 20, 2021 at 4:05 am | Reply
  83. Video Marketing Company

    You've made some good points there. I looked on the net for additional information about the issue and found most individuals will go along with your views on this web site.


    May 20, 2021 at 3:26 am | Reply
  84. Digital Marketing Specialists

    There's definately a lot to learn about this issue. I like all the points you've made.


    May 20, 2021 at 2:31 am | Reply
  85. SEO Marketing Company Near Me

    I could not refrain from commenting. Perfectly written!


    May 20, 2021 at 1:48 am | Reply
  86. RV Headlights Los Angeles


    May 19, 2021 at 11:08 pm | Reply
  87. RV Toilets Orange County


    May 19, 2021 at 7:17 pm | Reply
  88. RV Mechanics Orange County

    I need to to thank you for this good read!! I definitely loved every bit of it. I have you book-marked to check out new stuff you post…


    May 19, 2021 at 6:07 pm | Reply
  89. rv repair center


    May 19, 2021 at 5:02 pm | Reply
  90. Internet Marketing Agencies Near Me

    Way cool! Some very valid points! I appreciate you penning this write-up and the rest of the website is also really good.


    May 19, 2021 at 5:00 pm | Reply
  91. toyhauler furniture

    I want to to thank you for this fantastic read!! I definitely enjoyed every little bit of it. I have got you book-marked to check out new stuff you post…


    May 19, 2021 at 4:54 pm | Reply
  92. fiberglass shop near me

    I used to be able to find good info from your content.


    May 19, 2021 at 4:40 pm | Reply
  93. RV Dent Repair Near Me

    Spot on with this write-up, I absolutely think this website needs a great deal more attention. I’ll probably be returning to see more, thanks for the advice!


    May 19, 2021 at 3:46 pm | Reply
  94. Mercedes Sprinter Service Center Near Me


    May 19, 2021 at 2:22 pm | Reply
  95. Good Eye Doctors Near Me

    This site certainly has all of the information and facts I wanted concerning this subject and didn’t know who to ask.


    May 19, 2021 at 9:27 am | Reply
  96. Content Marketing Business

    This is a topic that is near to my heart... Thank you! Where are your contact details though?


    May 19, 2021 at 9:14 am | Reply
  97. Roofing Supply Companies Near Me

    Your style is really unique compared to other people I have read stuff from. Thanks for posting when you've got the opportunity, Guess I'll just bookmark this page.


    May 19, 2021 at 8:59 am | Reply
  98. Internet Marketing Service


    May 19, 2021 at 8:38 am | Reply
  99. Eyeglasses Near Me Same Day

    I like it whenever people come together and share thoughts. Great website, continue the good work!


    May 19, 2021 at 6:32 am | Reply
  100. Social Media Marketing Firms California


    May 19, 2021 at 6:07 am | Reply
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17

Post a comment


CNN welcomes a lively and courteous discussion as long as you follow the Rules of Conduct set forth in our Terms of Service. Comments are not pre-screened before they post. You agree that anything you post may be used, along with your name and profile picture, in accordance with our Privacy Policy and the license you have granted pursuant to our Terms of Service.