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Tuesday, July 4, 2017

World Powers

Which are the most powerful countries in the world?  That may sound like a simple question, but it really is not.  It's rather easy to rank the USA as the most powerful.  It has, by far, the strongest armed forces, a huge nuclear arsenal and the means to deliver it, an enormous economy and treaties/alliances with other nations that add to American strength. 

It also seems rather easy to rank China as number 2.  The Chinese economy dwarfs the other nations (other than the USA).  The Chinese armed forces are also large and well equipped, although the Chinese navy is hardly ready for serious combat.  China, like the USA, is a center for technological advancement which will further strengthen its position.

When we get to number 3, things get complicated.  There's Japan with its large economy but weak military.  There's Russia with its huge nuclear arsenal, but lagging economy.  There's India with a huge population, growing economy and strong economy.  There's Germany with a strong economy but a weak military.  There are also the old colonial powers of France and the UK.  There's little doubt that of these nations, the one that is becoming stronger rapidly is India.  There's also little doubt that the one which is weakening the most is France.  Only Germany and Japan do not possess nuclear weapons, although either nation could most likely build such weapons within a year after making a decision to do so.

There are also countries like South Korea, Brazil, Israel, and Pakistan which have certain characteristics of world powers but which don't make it to the first tier in that group. 


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