Layne 11 Professor and Robert M. Gates Chair in National Security at Texas A & M University's Bush School of Government and Public Service.
Christopher, “Bye bye, Miss American Pie, “28.03.2011, http://theeuropean-magazine.com/223-layne-christopher/231-pax-americana
The epoch of American hegemony is drawing to a close. Evidence of America’s relative decline is omnipresent. According to the Economist, China will surpass the U.S. as the world’s largest economy in 2019. The U.S. relative power decline will affect international politics in coming decades: the likelihood of great power security competitions – and even war – will increase; the current era of “globalization” will end; and the post-1945 Pax Americana will be replaced by a new international order that reflects the interests of China and the other emerging great powers.
Unsustainable – Counterbalancing
Hegemony is unsustainable – counterbalancing is inevitable
Maher 11 Ph.D. candidate in the Political Science department at Brown University
Richard, The Paradox of American Unipolarity: Why the United States May Be Better Off in a Post-Unipolar World”, http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0030438710000633)
Since the disintegration of the Soviet Union and the end of the Cold War, world politics has been unipolar, defined by American preponderance in each of the core components of state power--military, economic, and technological. Such an imbalanced distribution of power in favor of a single country is unprecedented in the modern state system. This material advantage does not automatically translate into America's preferred political and diplomatic outcomes, however. Other states, if now only at the margins, are challenging U.S. power and authority. Additionally, on a range of issues, the United States is finding it increasingly difficult to realize its goals and ambitions. The even bigger challenge for policymakers in Washington is how to respond to signs that America's unquestioned preeminence in international politics is waning. This decline in the United States' relative position is in part a consequence of the burdens and susceptibilities produced by unipolarity. Contrary to the conventional wisdom, the U.S. position both internationally and domestically may actually be strengthened once this period of unipolarity has passed.
Russia and China counterbalancing
David 10 Senior Fellow and Member of the Board of Trustees at Hudson Institute
(Jack, “US Military Primacy Worth Sacrificing,” National Review, http://www. nationalreview.com/articles/255423/us-military-primacy-worth-sacrificing-jack-david)
In evaluating whether U.S. military programs can be eliminated without imperiling military primacy, it is necessary first to consider what potential adversaries are saying and doing and how their actions will affect the U.S. Two countries of enormous importance in this regard are Russia and China. While our relations with Russia today are not as hostile as they were with the Soviet Union (thankfully), Russia’s reassertion of rights in territories the Soviet Union once occupied is worrisome. Russian air-force fighters already are comparable to the U.S. mainstay, the F15. Russia is developing fighter aircraft comparable to our now-incomparable F22 (production of which has been terminated to save money), and it is continuing to develop nuclear-weapon and other military capabilities explicitly intended to be superior to ours and to defeat us in any conflict. China long has made territorial claims on the regions surrounding it. Some of these are in areas in the western Pacific claimed by other countries. Others are in what the U.S. regards as international waters. It is no secret that China is aggressively building a blue-water navy, has F15-comparable fighters in its own air force, and already is testing an F22-comparable aircraft that will be deployed in very few years. Moreover, the ships, aircraft, missiles, and space and cyber capabilities China is developing, like those of the Russians, are explicitly being designed to defeat U.S. air, naval, and space military capabilities. These facts are significant. They demonstrate elements of U.S. primacy from the perspective of Russia and China, showing what U.S. military resources they regard as impeding their plans. They also show that Russia and China believe there is a significant possibility that they will want to use military force to achieve an objective contrary to U.S. interests. As was the case in Korea in 1953, U.S. military weakness in the late 1930s eased the way for Nazi aggression and invited Japan’s attack on Pearl Harbor. At that time, the U.S. military was not remotely prepared for the war. Had the U.S. not been as isolationist and had it spent what was necessary in the 1920s and 1930s to assure itself of military primacy, perhaps Japan and Germany would not have started what became World War II, a war in which 70 million people, including 405,399 Americans, died, and which cost us $337 billion in early-1940s dollars. There is no way to predict with confidence whether Russia or China will use the military power it is developing to resolve differences with other countries, although there is ample evidence that each may. But we can be sure that, if a U.S. interest is involved — Japan or Taiwan, for example — both would consider the U.S.’s military capability before initiating a major military operation. If that happens, what would we do? Would we capitulate to our adversary’s demands, whatever they may be? Would we deploy our military forces in the hope of prevailing? If our military forces prevail, how would we feel about the human and economic costs we suffered in the conflict? Perhaps this scenario was what Defense Secretary Robert Gates had in mind last month when he told the co-chairs of the Deficit Reduction Commission that a 10 percent cut in the defense budget would be a “catastrophe.” “If you want peace, prepare for war.” That advice, which dates back to the time of the Roman Empire, applies today. The U.S. has preserved its political and economic freedom, and the political and economic freedom of its friends, by maintaining military primacy since the 1950s. We must continue to do so.
Unsustainable – Economic Constraints Economic Constraints Kills U.S. Leadership Role
Layne 09 Robert M. Gates Chair in Intelligence and National Security at the George Bush School of Government and Public Service at Texas A&M University.
Christopher, International Security, Volume 34, Number 1, Summer 2009, pp. 147-172 (Review), The Waning of U.S. Hegemony—Myth or Reality? A Review Essay
In particular, Global Trends predicts that over the next two decades, the dollar’s role as the international economy’s preeminent reserve currency will erode. Although at the time this issue went to press, the dollar remained strong and will continue to be the reserve currency for some time to come, China’s spring 2009 call to replace the dollar with a new reserve currency signals that the NIC’s long-term worries may be justified. As the NIC observes, the financial privileges conferred on the United States by the dollar’s unchallenged reserve currency status have underpinned the preeminent role of the United States in international politics since the end of World War II. Thus, “the dollar’s decline may force the United States into difficult tradeoffs between achieving ambitious foreign policy goals and the high domestic costs of supporting those objectives” (pp. 12, 94, 97). Moreover, the growing dependence of the United States on foreign capital inflows “may curtail U.S. freedom of action in unanticipated ways” (p. 97). The NIC concludes that America’s “interest and willingness to play a leadership role may be more constrained as the economic, military, and opportunity costs of being the world’s leader are reassessed by American voters”
Unsustainable – Overstretch
Layne 06Robert M. Gates Chair in Intelligence and National Security at the George Bush School of Government and Public Service at Texas A&M University.
Christopher, International Security, Vol. 31, No. 2 (Fall 2006), pp. 7–41, http://belfercenter.ksg.harvard.edu/files/is3102_pp007-041_layne.pdf
Although some scholars argue that, as a hegemon the United States is a status quo power, its grand strategy is actually a peculiar mix. The United States is a status quo power in that it aims to preserve the existing distribution of power. Consistent with the logic of offensive realism, however, the United States is also an expansionist state that seeks to increase its power advantages and to extend its geopolitical and ideological reach. To preserve the status quo that favors them, hegemons must keep knocking down actual and potential rivals; that is, they must continue to expand. The Athenian leader Alcibiades captured this reality when, urging the Athenians to mount the (ultimately disastrous) Sicilian expedition, he stated, “We cannot fix the exact point at which our empire shall stop; we have reached a position in which we must not be content with retaining but must scheme to extend it, for, if we cease to rule others, we are in danger of being ruled ourselves.”
US overstretch causes war and military attrition
Shor 10Associate Prof Wayne State University Interdisciplinary Studies Program
(Francis, “War in the Era of Declining U.S. Global Hegemony”, Issue 2, 2010, Journal of Critical Globalisation Studies, pp.65-81;,
Another very real dilemma for U.S. military imperialism and their global strategies, particularly as a consequence of the wars on Iraq and Afghanistan, is imperial overstretch. Both in terms of the eventual costs, estimated in the trillions of dollars just in the case of the war on Iraq, and the continuing drain on military personnel, these wars have further underscored the inherent contradictions of U.S. military imperialism and its war strategies. Even with active troops, counting the National Guard and Reserves, numbering over 2 million, the U.S. military has so depleted its human resources that it has resorted to extending tours in ways that have lowered morale and created even more internal dissent about deployment. Attempts to offset these problems by higher pay inducements, expansion of the numbers, and use of private contractors have only exacerbated the overall contradictions endemic in maintaining the kind of global garrison embodied by U.S. military imperialism. According to world-systems scholar Giovanni Arrighi, besides having “jeopardized the credibility of U.S. military might,” the war and occupation of Iraq may be one of the key components underlying the “terminal crisis of U.S. hegemony,” albeit without diminishing the U.S. role as “the world’s pre-eminent military power” (2005, p. 80). Nonetheless, as pointed out by other scholars (Johnson, 2004; Mann, 2003; Wallerstein, 2003), imperial overstretch was central to the demise of previous empires and now threatens the death of a U.S. empire also bent on fighting debilitating and self-destructive wars.
Internals – Cooperation
Hegemony undermines cooperation
Ikenberry 06-Albert G. Milbank Professor of Politics and International Affairs at Princeton University
G. John Ikenberry, “Liberal International Theory in the Wake of 911 and American Unipolarity,” Princeton Journal, January 22, 2006 https://www.princeton.edu/~gji3/Microsoft_Word_-_Ikenberry-Liberal-International-Theory-in-the-Wake-of-911-and-American-unipoliarity-Oslo-word%20doc.pdf, 6-29-11
The United States claims that it cannot play by the same rules as other states because of its unique global security involvements, which make it a special target for political prosecutions. This line of unipolar reasoning leads to what Harvard’s John Ruggie has called American “exemptionalism.” The problem is that other states do not really buy this argument. Either they do not quite buy the American claim that it is providing a public good for the world, or they do not think the public good is worth the price of expanded American exemptionalism. The result is disagreement, contested authority, lost cooperation, and reduced American capacity to realize its security goals. Again, The United States is caught in the security trap.