Market Forces, Not Rhetoric, Will Drive Globalization

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The United States has been the standard-bearer for free trade, multilateralism, and globalization since the end of World War II. However, as the Trump administration seems to back away from that historic role, new powers like China are rushing – at least rhetorically – to take advantage of the strategic and economic vacuum that a more isolationist America might leave behind. Some fear that Washington’s apparent retreat from free trade and global leadership may provoke an international strategic realignment, a convergence of interests between the world’s remaining proponents of free trade, multilateralism, and globalization. The Cipher Brief’s Fritz Lodge spoke with Parag Khanna, author of the best-selling book Connectography, about whether such a realignment is taking place and what it could mean for the United States and the world economy. 

The Cipher Brief: With what appears to be a more economically protectionist and diplomatically isolationist U.S. president in the White House, as well as the disruption caused by Britain’s impending exit from the European Union, do you see an opposite reaction from countries and leaders that continue to espouse globalist ideals? Is this leading to economic or strategic realignment?

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