×

Uh-oh, it looks like your Internet Explorer is out of date.

For a better shopping experience, please upgrade now.

Still Ours to Lead: America, Rising Powers, and the Tension between Rivalry and Restraint
     

Still Ours to Lead: America, Rising Powers, and the Tension between Rivalry and Restraint

by Bruce D. Jones
 

See All Formats & Editions

America is debating its role in the world. Critics contend that we are leading from behind in places such as Libya, and not at all in places such as Syria. There are pervasive fears about our lost influence in the international economy and of the threat posed by a rising China. The debate has been shaped by concepts of American decline and Western disunity and the

Overview

America is debating its role in the world. Critics contend that we are leading from behind in places such as Libya, and not at all in places such as Syria. There are pervasive fears about our lost influence in the international economy and of the threat posed by a rising China. The debate has been shaped by concepts of American decline and Western disunity and the rise of a powerful bloc of emerging powers. The result, it is argued, is that we live in a "post-Western" world, a leaderless world, where conflict and disorder will outpace cooperation and problem solving. In this provocative Brookings FOCUS book, Bruce Jones explains why these are myths or, at the very least, exaggerations.

The United States is still by far the most influential actor in international politics and security, and it does not face a changing world alone —America has myriad allies, including many of the world's top economic and security powers. Together, the United States and its partners still hold the preponderance of power in international politics and economics and will for some time to come. What's more, the rising powers are deeply divided among themselves —in actuality, there is very little mortar among the emergent BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa). And some of the emerging powers are actively seeking to strengthen, not weaken, the international order —though of course, they want a greater seat at the table as they do so. Nor is it just these five that are rising: among the ranks of nations whose influence in international politics is increasing are countries such as South Korea and Germany, close U.S. allies both. And while China is clearly going to challenge some aspects of American leadership, there are other places where the United States and China share interests.

This account —which draws on years of insider access to top decisionmakers both in Washington and in the capitals of the rising powers —shows there is more appetite for cooperation than meets the eye. There are risks ahead, to be sure; but in the race between the American-led order and the "coming disorder," it's still ours to lose.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
★ 03/17/2014
When is America's time as leader of the free world up? This is the question on the minds of many Americans and non-Americans alike, and the answer according to Jones in his convincing new book is not as soon you think. Jones, director of the International Order and Strategy project at the Brookings Intuition, argues that America is currently on top and, as possessor of the world's largest economy, owner of the denomination of the global reserve currency, in a position that is tough to topple. Jones analyzes the positions of emerging powers, focusing mainly on Brazil, India, China, and sometimes Russia, and identifies a mindset behind them which involves a constant balance between rivalry and restraint. He puts forth reasonable and realistic reasons why their takeover(s) is approaching but not imminent. Like it or not, Jones evenhandedly points out, the nations of the world whether current powers, emerging powers or declining powers are interconnected through trade, economy, geopolitics, fuel energy, threat of terrorism, climate control, and a myriad of other shared interests, so no one on the top or the bottom is positioned to rock the international waters. The result is an interesting, relevant, and accessible read. (Feb.)
From the Publisher

"An indispensable antidote both to boosterish America-first-ism and to doomy Asia-first-ism. Jones demonstrates that the 'rise of the rest' need not be a zero-sum game for the U.S., because new powers like China depend on the international system that the U.S. leads. Jones shows us that optimism can be based, not on ideology or blind faith, but on a hard-headed understanding of global trends."—James Traub, columnist at Foreign Policy and author of The Freedom Agenda

"Bruce Jones's analysis is persuasive; better still, he provides a detailed manual for American coalitional diplomacy to address problems from climate change to maritime security. Still Ours to Lead accepts the reality of rising powers while reminding established powers, above all the United States, of just how much they stand to lose if they fail to lead."—Anne-Marie Slaughter, president and CEO, New America Foundation, and Professor of Politics and International Affairs, Princeton University

"This smart and important book provides a blueprint for American global leadership in the coming decades. With all the hype about American decline, following a period of what some have called American hubris, Bruce Jones offers a clear-eyed assessment of the true state of the international order and a realistic path ahead for the U.S. His analysis and his prescriptions offer wisdom for all sides in the debate."—Robert Kagan, historian and author of The World America Made

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780815725121
Publisher:
Brookings Institution Press
Publication date:
03/17/2014
Pages:
263
Product dimensions:
6.30(w) x 9.10(h) x 1.00(d)

Meet the Author

Bruce Jones is a senior fellow and director of the Managing Global Order project under the Foreign Policy at Brookings, where he writes on international order, the rising powers, international institutions, and intervention. He has experience in Middle East peace negotiations, crisis management in the Balkans, in the UN, and in intergovernmental negotiations on security and transnational threats.

Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Post to your social network

     

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews