The most unexpected setback that the U.S. suffered was in geopolitics. When the U.S. was busy in the Muslim world, China was steadily rising. By the time the U.S. realised that China had become its greatest rival since the end of the Cold War, it was too late. The U.S. had already lost the war in Afghanistan; al-Qaeda had split into different branches (what President Biden called a metastasised threat); divisive, ethno-nationalist and Islamophobic politics had become stronger at home; and the moment of unipolarity had passed. (Read More)
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