Leadership and A New Superpower

[There is no hidden meaning in the source I chose, it just happened to the be the first one with a definition of superpower I could use.]

A Page on the World: The Next Superpower?
By Ambassador Rockwell A. Schnabel, Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc., 2005, ISBN 0742545474.
Reviewed by Darris McNeely

Last May the French voted "no" to the European Constitution. Ever since, many have speculated that the European project is stalled or halted. Nothing could be further from the truth. The European Community is still a potent force in world affairs and growing larger. Anyone who thinks Europe will not be a player, if not the player, on the future geopolitical scene does not understand our current world.

The Next Superpower? shows how the structure of the European colossus is building, one layer at a time.

The core of the book is chapters 2 and 3, "The European Union as an Economic Superpower" and "The European Union as a Geopolitical Superpower." Chapter 2 begins with...

a definition of "superpower" from the Oxford English Dictionary: "[a state] which has the power to act decisively in pursuit of interests which embrace the whole world."

Unfortunately, my story begins here.

Europe is NOT going to be the next superpower, one has already quietly arisen. Note by the current president as a member of the axis of evil, the rise of Iran as a Global Superpower has come basically un announced to the world at large.

Take a look at the definition of superpower again.

Now, here's something to think about as I excerpt from the Daily Terrorism Briefing produced by www.stratfor.com.

Excerpted from:

In a U.S. Attack Scenario, Iran Holds Many Cards

Speculating on how Iran might respond to a U.S. attack against Tehran's nuclear facilities, a member of the Global Islamic Movement told a Feb. 19 seminar on suicide-bombing tactics at Tehran's Khajeh Nasir Toosi University that hundreds of suicide bombers could be unleashed against U.S. and British troops in Iraq. Mohammed Ali Samadi, spokesman for the movement's Committee for the Glorification of Martyrs, might have been simply responding to U.S. and Israeli pressure on Iran over its developing nuclear program, though he did point out one of the many unconventional ways the Iranians could retaliate for an attack. Iran, however, has other methods at its disposal.

Historically, the ayatollahs at the helm in Tehran have demonstrated that they have the means and the will to strike at their enemies. In the event of a U.S. attack against Iran, then, Tehran could unleash Hezbollah, the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps and Ministry of Intelligence and Security (MOIS) operatives against U.S. interests in the region, and possibly beyond.

1.  Iran's intelligence apparatus remains one of the most sophisticated in the Middle East, due largely to the legacy of training provided by the CIA to SAVAK, the Shah's secret police.

2.  Because the tactic has worked for Iran in the past, the Iranians also could conduct a global assassination and kidnapping campaign, with targets including Western diplomats and nongovernmental organization workers, among others.

3. Western hotels and areas where Western expatriates congregate would be vulnerable. Furthermore, these targets could be in the Middle East, Africa, Latin America or elsewhere. Hezbollah pioneered the use of the suicide truck bomb in Lebanon in the early 1980s, its most notable success being the October 1983 attack against the U.S. Marine barracks in Beirut. These skills could be brought to bear on U.S. interests again as retaliation for an attack against Iran.

4. Within the Middle East, the Iranians could disrupt U.S. efforts in Iraq by inciting the Shia in southern Iraq to attack coalition forces. Although Iran wants a Shiite-dominated, and thus Iran-friendly, neighbor -- and inciting the Shiite population in southern Iraq would complicate that goal -- a U.S. attack against Iran could change the Iranian position.

5. Iran also has canned operations -- sleeper cells that are awaiting activation -- in Latin America and Southeast Asia.

6. Within the United States, a Hezbollah network was revealed in the summer of 2004 -- as well as those supporting any unknown Hezbollah network -- could be called into action.

7. As a state actor, Iran would have to make certain to distance itself from any attack against U.S. or Western interests -- especially large-scale attacks inside the United States or Western Europe. As a nation state, Iran would have to conduct such a retaliatory campaign with the knowledge that it would be held accountable for its actions if they were proven to be linked back to Tehran. Therefore, retaliatory attacks most likely would be carried out by groups that do not appear to have direct connections to Tehran. Unlike a non-state actor such as al Qaeda or other jihadist group, the Iranian government has infrastructure, resources and territory to lose if it were to trigger a massive U.S. retaliation.

If attacked, Tehran's counterattack likely would be designed to give the United States so many fires to put out around the world that it could not concentrate on Iran."

End Excerpt

a definition of "superpower" from the Oxford English Dictionary: "[a state] which has the power to act decisively in pursuit of interests which embrace the whole world."

As a leader, my biggest fear is the disruption of the global economy. In other words, actions taken by a superpower, European or otherwise will affect the majority of the U.S. faster than any other part of the world for one simple reason--leverage.

The U.S. is leveraged in multiple ways:

  • dependent upon continuous flow of cheaper and cheaper goods to create spending leverage with fewer and fewer dollars of discretionary income available

  • dependent upon rising housing prices so refinancing can continue* to reduce revolving debt

  • dependent upon low interest rates to keep housing prices stable, or rising

  • dependent upon "consumer economy" which spends such a large portion of it's income that it can drive monetary policy

  • dependent upon the good will of energy suppliers, as we now import 60% of our energy needs

  • dependent on our optimism, which drives the psychological constructs under girding our stock market, housing bubble, spending and service economy

  • dependent upon a service economy where many layers depend on free spending Americans to support non-nessential services

Any serious burp in any one of those dependencies, along with others too numerous to list and our service economy will grind to a halt. The very second that occurs, we'll see broad scale erosion in all areas of the economy.

What I fear most is economic terrorism.

It took Ben Bernake's "Japan Plan" to lift us from disaster as we entered into the twenty-first century--landing him the seat as Fed Chairman. Little does the average American know what keeps him in the position to keep spending and consuming.

Now, don't get me wrong, I'm not against anything here...

I'm not against more than one superpower, I'm not against muslims or christians, I'm not against the average joe who wants to have a life, I'm not against rising real estate...I'm just trying to figure out what kind of leadership will be required as the world turns.

In a world with so many complex caveats, what kind of leadership is necessary at the global level, and the local level for "people to have lives"--a favorite statement of Phillip Crosby, the now-departed quality guru.

I hope you'll join me on my blog and leave your opinion about the next world leadership that is now knocking at the door.

Until then,

Still time to reach my inner circle….

Purchase my new book in private launch: http://www.cprforthesoul.com/private