The Duck of Minerva

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Sharing Power: America’s Strategic Choices

May 4, 2013

The Strategic Studies Institute of the US Army War College has just published my latest effort, a study of America’s strategic choices and the prospects for a grand strategy based on the two principles of Concert and Balance.

The PDF is free to download.

Bottom Line: the US does not have to choose between unipolar hegemony and ‘coming home’, as the reductionist debate often characterises it. Somewhere in that middle ground, it can retrench while retaining a forward presence. It can both accommodate rising states, while hedging against the adventurism of any would-be aggressor.

This will be very difficult, and comes with dilemmas of its own. But there are some practical steps that could give this a fighting chance.

Cross-posted at The Offshore Balancer

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Patrick Porter is Professor of International Security and Strategy at the University of Birmingham. He is also Senior Associate Fellow at the Royal United Services Institute, London. His research interests are great power politics, grand strategy, realism, the causes and consequences of major powers’ decline, the Iraq war of 2003, foreign and defence policy in the US and UK, and the intellectual life of major powers and their foreign policy establishments. He has written four books. His book Blunder: Britain's War in Iraq (Oxford University Press, 2018) was shortlisted for the British Army Military Book of the Year Prize, 2019. His most recent book is The False Promise of Liberal Order: Nostalgia, Delusion and the Rise of Trump (Polity, 2020). He also wrote The Global Village Myth: Distance, War and the Limits of Power (Georgetown University Press, 2015) and Military Orientalism: Eastern War through Western Eyes (Columbia University Press, 2009.