Nation: The U.S. Is No Longer No. 1

Europeans take a bleak new view of their chief ally

Underlying the current tensions between the U.S. and its principal allies is one essential fact that many Americans have difficulty either believing or accepting. This fact is that the world's perception of the U.S.—and particularly Europe's perception—has changed substantially in the past few years. Among Americans, it is still commonplace to regard the U.S. as the world's foremost power, economically, militarily and in almost every other way. Among Western Europeans, however, the view is quite different. As the highly respected French political scientist Raymond Aron sums it up, "The U.S. is no...

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