Il solito Walt traccia la solita lucida e realistica analisi della situazione, evidenziando l'inadeguatezza della strategia statunitense. La qual cosa, direi, ha purtroppo risvolti negativi anche sui nostri interessi nazionali.
"1. The financial crisis has put the Eurozone under unprecedented stress, and the European Union's future looks increasingly bleak (…).
2. NATO looks more and more obsolescent. Its performance in Afghanistan has been disheartening and the recent war in Libya is a monument to NATO disharmony (because most NATO members aren't involved), as well as a revealing demonstration of just how weak the alliance is when it can't rely on the United States to do all the work (…)
3. The Arab world is in upheaval, and seems likely to remain unsettled for years. The United States has yet to formulate a clear policy towards this new situation, and contrary what the White House seems to think, having the President give another lofty speech is not a policy. Qaddafi's days may be numbered and the Assad regime in Syria looks like it's on borrowed time too, but what comes after either one is anyone's guess. Prospects for a smooth transition and economic turnaround in Egypt look equally dim. But the key point is that the outcomes of these processes won't be determined by us; the United States lacks the resources, respect, and moral authority to shape the political future in any of these countries (…).
4. In fact, the "Arab spring" has done nothing to improve the U.S. image in the region. Instead, it has sharpened the obvious contradictions between America's strategic interests (…) That would require a thorough rethinking of U.S. policy toward both the Gulf monarchies and Israel, but in case you hadn't noticed, the political will for a more realistic policy is obviously lacking.
5. There may be a mounting power struggle in Iran, but its slow march toward a latent nuclear capability continues. Sanctions won't stop them; military force will only make things worse, and our diplomatic efforts have been half-hearted, impatient (and to be fair, somewhat unlucky). Meanwhile, the Saudis are ticked off with us over Mubarak's ouster, we're getting out of Iraq and leaving god-knows-what behind, and we have no idea what to do about Yemen (…)
6. The Afghan War will end — but not soon — and we will leave behind a dysfunctional country, a nuclear-armed Pakistan (…). Getting out is still the right decision, but it's not like the area is going to be tranquil once we're gone.
7. Japan — which is still the world's third largest economy — has suffered nearly two decades of economic stagnation and a costly nuclear disaster. Its population is shrinking and aging, and its value as a counter-weight to a rising China is diminishing. Building a balancing coalition in Asia is still feasible, but overcoming the inevitable collective action problems will require lots of American attention and some adroit diplomatic and military hardball. Which in turn requires a major shift in foreign policy resources toward Asia, as well as a significant increase in the intellectual capital devoted to these issues. But instead we're still bogged down elsewhere.
8. China continues to rack up impressive rates of economic growth — despite some signs of strain — and it has avoided the foreign policy sinkholes that Washington has specialized in for the past two decades. That's how clever rising powers do it: they let stronger countries try to run the world, and bide their time until those states are suitably weakened by the effort (…).
9. As these various problems mount, America's political institutions seem increasingly paralyzed.
Put all this together, and I worry that we are on the cusp of genuine sea-change in world affairs. The landscape we have taken for granted for decades is now in flux, yet nobody is thinking about how the United States should prepare for a world whose central features are radically different than the one we have known (and not in a good way)"