Great Powers’ Competition in International Relations
The quest for world supremacy is not a new thing to the face of the world. It all started with the Cold War between the United States of America and the Soviet Union immediately after World War Two until the early 1990s. China, India, Russia, and the EU have worked together in a quest to curtail the US world dominance. The four world’s wealthy nations and the EU are competing on issues relating to; “nuclear power proliferation, international influence, military and weapon development, technological innovation and industrial development.”
Each of the five nations has adopted nuclear energy programs through nuclear power and nuclear weapon of mass destruction. The US was the first to develop and test atomic bombs in 1945 after the Second World War. In 1945, the US dropped atomic bombs in Japan’s towns of Nagasaki and Hiroshima to force Japan out of the pacific wars. The result of the bomb was massive destruction in Japan and the killing of many innocent civilians. Since then, there has been a nuclear arms race. The US and Russian have been undertaking nuclear programs for a long time, and by the end of 1946, both the Soviet Union and the US had developed nuclear bombs.
The United Kingdom and France started nuclear programs in 1960 and 1961, respectively, with China following in 1964. It’s feared that the more nations with nuclear weapons, the higher the chances they will be used. There are rumors that the “US has a nuclear weapon that can destroy both Russia and China without risk of striking back.” Other than weapons, nuclear energy is used to produce power as an alternative to electricity. Over time the US has been internationally negotiating to control the spread of nuclear weapons. As a result, the US has been pressurizing Iran and Iraq to stop the idea of nuclear programs.
These countries have been fighting to increase their international influence on developing world nations. Each country has exacted its influence on various third-world nations. Trade blocks created by each nation at its location are seen as a base for exerting pressure on other competing nations. The great economic integration between China and Asian countries was made to reduce the US trade influence in the Middle East. China is trying to replace the US in leadership roles in Asian economic zones. Each of the five nations is ever giving loans and grants to developing nations which was initially done by the US and the Soviet Union: China, a former US aid recipient, is leading in giving loans to African countries. China has invested in many African countries such as Angola, Malawi, and Zambia. The “European Union euro is replacing the US dollar in international trade as the reserve currency, and international bonds are now euro denominated.” The EU and China have entered into a trade agreement as well as a military relationship to compete with the US. There is competition on who to host major sports events such as the Olympics and the World football cup among the nations.
These countries are trying to outdo each other in technological innovation and advancement. Most world-renowned electronic companies are found in these countries. China is coming up with cheaper and modern electronics than before. The use of the internet in all aspects is increasing across the superpowers. Both countries have invested much in spacecraft and the space race. America and Russia were the first countries to land on the moon and create satellites that orbit the earth.
Competition is increasing in military and weapon development. The US is known to have the world’s dominant air force, strong nuclear weapons, and a navy army. The US budget on defense is estimated to be half the world’s total spending on defense. Its intelligence unit has ever dominated the world while its military personnel has been deployed in more than ten countries across the world. The US and the Soviet Union have expressed their military superiority through military coalition. In 2003 the US military, with assistance from the UK, toppled the Saddam Hussein regime in Iraq. Each nation is contributing more military to the UN peacekeeping mission in war-prone regions. The US dominance in military operations and sanctions are now weakened by the coalition operation between Russia and China. The latter has expanded its military capability from ground to navy and air force.
These countries have invested evenly in industrial development to create new and strengthen the existing industries. Industrial development and growth capacity determine countries’ economic strength. China is establishing more industries in Africa and the Middle East. The performance of economies of these five nations relies heavily on industries, and industrial innovation is their key endeavor. In their quest to dominate world trade, they have forced third world nations to open up their market for trade and to reduce subsidies on their domestic industries. On the contrary, these emerging economies and developed economies have bared goods from the third world from entering their markets and have spent billions of dollars to subsidize their industries.