NEW DELHI, June 21 (UPI) -- Hard times are tough, but good times can be even worse. Since the Vietnam defeat in 1975, the United States has not suffered a serious overt blow to its military power, with the result there has been no serious effort at reconfiguring strategies in a context in which India and China displace Europe as the geopolitical pivot of the Eurasian landmass.
Over the coming decade, the "European premium" that has enabled the countries of the West to enjoy a standard of life far in excess of their productive capacities, or future potential, will gradually erode. Only the countries of East Asia and West Asia are victims to this premium now. For the most part, both Arab and Sinic societies are in a time warp. They are unwilling to accept that the center of excellence is shifting from Europe to Asia and North America.
However even they are changing slowly so a secular decline in the standard of living within Europe seems inevitable.
Due of the momentum created by its size, the United States has been able to shrug off the effect of mistakes in policy, creating for itself the illusion it still has time on its side. The fact is 2005 is the equivalent of 1905. The world is about a decade from a possible major international conflagration, one that is likely to be centered in East Asia.