America is an odd empire. For one thing, it both denies and doesn’t know it is one. It does, nonetheless, have a globe-spanning military presence, spending more than the next thirteen countries combined and with a presence in at least 38 countries, consisting of at least 662 bases and other facilities (pdf).
More importantly, America is a new type of empire (although not that new), a financial empire. The currency of the world is the US Dollar.
Pieces like this one today by Liu Chang in China’s state-run Xinhua News Agency should be a wake-up call. When your creditors start talking about divesting, it may be too late to turn it around.
(It should be noted that, hysterical media yammering aside, China doesn’t not own our country; we do. Most US debt is owned by the American people, individually and through their government. But that doesn’t make good headlines.)
I’m not stuffing my mattress with Euros and burying gold the back yard, but I’m not optimistic.