Fading American economic and military dominance: Lesser US role foreseen in 2025

Intelligence panel warns of a nuclear arms race in the Middle East

LAHORE: The top US intelligence panel is expected to issue a snapshot of the world in 2025, in a report that predicts fading American economic and military dominance and warns of a nuclear arms race in the Middle East – with the region likely to remain an ‘arc of instability’ over the next two decades.

The predictions come from a National Intelligence Council (NIC) report – a draft copy of which is titled ‘Global Trends 2025: A Transformed World’ – slated for release as early as Thursday. “The US will remain the single most powerful country, although less dominant,” according to a ‘working draft’ of the document.

Thomas Fingar – deputy director of national intelligence for analysis – gave his long-term assessment before the release of the global intelligence outlook.

He said the release of the ‘stimulative document’ was meant to coincide with the transition to the new US administration. Fingar said almost nothing in the document was ‘inevitable’. For the first time, an NIC report makes the ‘assumption of a multi-polar future’. The draft says, “The next 20 years of transition towards a new international system are fraught with risks, such as a nuclear arms race in the Middle East.

“If one looks at the globe as a whole, the Middle East … is one (region) in which almost every problem that will challenge political leadership anywhere on the globe is to be found,” said Fingar. “The challenges in the Middle East will be among the most significant.” The Middle East as a source of oil and gas would remain a focus of international attention, he said, “We see the region at the centre of an arc of instability”. The world’s population is projected to grow by 1.4 billion. However, the world order would be shifting and there would be multiple centres of power – inherently less stable than a world with one or two superpowers, Fingar cautioned.

“By 2025 China will have the world’s second-largest economy and will be a leading military power,” says the report. “At its current growth rate, Russia is on a path to become the world’s fifth-largest economy in 20 years.” About terrorism, Fingar said that Al Qaeda’s ideology had a ‘waning appeal’. But the expected population boom in the Middle East means more potential terrorism recruits and weapons may be more lethal.

Articles by: Global Research

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