Leadership and Contemporary World Order


During almost 30 years of academic discussions on the issues of world and international order the main focus of debates was concentrated on such questions as structure of interaction among leading world powers, solving the most important global and regional problems, quantitative growth of great powers and their status in comparison with non-state actors. Special attention was given to the issue of global leadership in the contemporary world, where the number of great powers has grown, and the disgreements among them have become rather noticeable. The main point of great powers’ discontent is who has the right to construct the contemporary world order. The United States declared itself a long-term global leader who can and must fulfill this mission together with its transatlantic allies and followers. American leaders declared that it was the US who saved the world from serious conflict after 1945, and they would like to continue this mission in the 21st century. Analysis of the results of American international policy shows that on the one hand, further destabilization of international relations should be expected, and on the other, the trend for establishment of the US-centric world order continues. The transatlantic strategy of obvious American dominance is aimed to establish new regulating rules and institutions, to constrain all initiatives and policies at global, regional and national levels. Destabilization of international relations and aggravation of global and regional threats put into question the idea of American global leadership. We need other forms of collective global and regional management, when interests of all leading world powers are coordinated and meet global challenges and threats. The issue of peace has become a key issue in the world policy agenda. The Obama administration is a monolithic group of politicians and experts who demonstrate sincere and strong adherence to the idea of American leadership, and are ready to use all possible means to fulfill the mission. They use “hard power” – military forces and NATO, informational campaigns and propaganda, as well intelligence and economic sanctions for this task. Even its use of “soft power” reflects the fact that the Unied States does not have a very peaceful image. The present state of world affairs dissatisfies many scholars in Russia and other countries. The author analyzes the current American view of the US global mission, and tries to answer this crucial question: Does the world community in the 21st century need one country – the United States - as a global leader.

Keywords: world order; international order; leadership; hegemony; Russia; the United States of America.

Authors: Tatiana Shakleina

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