The downfall of the United States from the world stage begun in 1998 when a number of American neo-conservatives wrote a letter to the then President of the United States Bill Clinton for American military intervention in Saddam Hussein led Iraq. The signatories even claimed in the last paragraph that failing to intervene may well put the future of America at risk.
Cut forward 20 years. The signatories, which included eminent thinkers like Robert Kagan and Francis Fukuyama, have expressed regret for what they wrote during that time. The subsequent war took thousands of Iraqi citizens' lives and gave rise to extremist terrorism. Worse, the US political fabric was irrevocably destroyed. The military adventurism of the United States was not followed by robust economic governance.
The vacuum left by the United States in the world stage led to the emergence of Putin led Russia in the world stage. Analysts are now afraid of a new Cold War in the offing. The Cold War, if it happens, will be an amorphous one. The political globe is not divided between clearly set material and also ideological frameworks. There is a number of complex economic and political markers involved.
Russia is phenomenally successful in trapping the United States and its NATO along with its non-NATO allies through the creation of domestic and worldwide challenges. These nations are compelled to execute knee jerk reactions and do exactly what the Kremlin wants them to do. Moscow has discovered leadership and structural vulnerabilities inside the Western sphere of influence. Although Russia singly may not be the complete counterweight to the West, combining with China makes the two a formidable opponent to the hegemony of the Western nations.
The weakness of the United States to counter China is found in the present Trump administration itself. President Trump's selection of Secretary of State is a poor one. He has replaced an expert one with a war monger who believes that the only way to be number one in the world is to wage wars all over the globe. Russia knows this and is only hiking up its clever tactics. The latest move by Kremlin involved the near assassination of Sergei Skripal, a one time Moscow spy now working for the West. Russian intelligence tried to poison his daughter Yulia Skripal at the same time. This attack left both of them in a critical physical condition. The attack, which happened in the United Kingdom, led many NATO countries to expel Russian diplomats from their capitals.