Global Ambitions and Decline- Emergence of the Interregional Asian Triangle and the Relegation of the US as a Hegemonic Power. The Reorientation of Europe
1. Rapid change and new formation 11
1. Rapid change and new formations The end of the ‘East-West’ conflict brought hopes of a bright future along with expectations of peace and security. The Europeans in particular were under the notion that the remaining superpower, the USA, would act as an equal among equals and resist any opportunity to build up an empire or a hegemonic structure. But contrary to this illusionary notion, successive American governments perceived the ‘Cold War’ with the Soviet Union as a real war from which they had emerged winners who - so they presumed - had earned the right to shape the world around the American model of living and American moral standards. This especially came into play after 9/11 when the unconditional war on terror was launched. Inevitably, there was a confrontation between the different concepts determining world-wide interaction among the global players: for instance, leadership understood either as behavior commensurate with an established and undisputed empire or only as characteristic of a hegemonic power, and the difference between unilateral and multilateral modes of action. Even the specific terms and definitions were debated by the academic community. The following sections shed light on the controversial term ‘hegemony’ and use a new definition to explain the latest developments in inter- national relations more exhaustively. With the Indian government pursuing a triangle strategy between India, China and Russia – a strategy that has the potential to change interplay between the global powers – an America/Europe-centered view needs to be directed at the India-China-Russia relationship in particular....
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