Can the World Be Led with Power Alone?

It displays its power as the strongest, but is not willing to cooperate with other countries. Will the world follow such a country?

President Trump has announced the publication of the “National Security Strategy,” the first for his administration. It is an important document that comprehensively outlines the security policy of the United States.

Characteristically, Trump insists upon “peace by power” against the setting of having the strongest military. The policy of the past 20 years, which has allowed rival countries to negotiate and work at becoming trustworthy partners, has been cast aside and deemed a mistake. One can say that this greatly diverges from the path of former President Obama’s administration, which treated international cooperation when dealing with hostile nations as key.

Furthermore, Trump displayed his hostile approach in positioning revisionist China and Russia as rivals who challenge the United States. Revisionist here means plotting to change the United States-centered approach of the international order.

Additionally, Trump criticizes North Korea and Iran as rogue regimes and has requested that ally nations take their fair share of responsibility in dealing with common threat such as international terrorism.

It is useful to analyze the U.S. policy as one of obtaining peace by force if this is considered a declaration the U.S. of its intention to fulfill its responsibility to maintain international order.

However, the familiar policy of “America First” appears repeatedly throughout the strategy document. There is no indication of concern about global warming, which should be considered a common threat to the world.

The United States is seeking cooperation with countries like China and Russia for support in dealing with the North Korean nuclear crisis. It is difficult to imagine that conveniently calling for cooperation from countries the U.S. sees as hostile will go smoothly.

At the U.N. Security Council, there was a resolution requesting that Trump’s acknowledgement of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital be withdrawn. All member states agreed, with the exception of the United States. The world is turning a strict eye toward the United States, which flaunts a selfish logic.

It is true that United States influence on the international community is relatively declining, but relying on military power alone to recover is an anachronism. It is the duty of superpowers to mobilize everyone, and to lead the world through soft power, such as cooperation, persuasion, and open-mindedness.

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