The world's peaceful transition from the British Empire to US preeminence is one of the happier aberrations of geopolitics: defying a generally dismal record of confrontations between established powers and their challengers, it affirms that prudent decision-making and fortuitous circumstances can yet prevail over the structural forces that are supposed to preordain conflict.…
The remainder of this commentary is available at lareviewofbooks.org.
Ali Wyne is a policy analyst at the nonprofit, nonpartisan RAND Corporation and a nonresident fellow with the Atlantic Council's Brent Scowcroft Center on International Security.
This commentary originally appeared on Los Angeles Review of Books on March 6, 2018. Commentary gives RAND researchers a platform to convey insights based on their professional expertise and often on their peer-reviewed research and analysis.