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Will the current global economic recession have long-term geopolitical implications? That is, will the recession lead to lasting structural changes in the international system? Assuming that economic recovery begins in the first half of 2010, lasting geopolitical changes are unlikely. There is little empirical evidence, for example, that the United States will not remain the dominant global power for decades to come, that U.S.-China relations will be much different five years from now than they are today, or that deteriorating economic conditions will cause substantial changes in the way the governments of Russia, Japan, or India see the world. This is because economic performance is only one of many geopolitical elements that shape countries' strategic intent and core external policies, and most of these other elements change only over the very long term.

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