BRICS does not pose strategic threat to the United States


Recent news of Argentina, Egypt, Ethiopia, Iran, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates joining the BRICS raised eyebrows, especially among anti-Western circles. However, it is important to note that the BRICS, soon to be an 11-member economic bloc, is more a partnership of convenience than a long-term alliance or a strategic threat to the United States. The criteria for joining the BRICS are vague, lacking a charter, secretariat, or even a functional website. This “paper tiger” faces numerous structural challenges and ideological inconsistencies that will continue to impede its progress.

Argentina and Egypt are grappling with enduring economic crises, primarily due to mismanagement by their respective governments. They remain heavily indebted to international creditors, including institutions influenced by the United States. By joining the BRICS, these nations aim to balance their reliance on the West and shift financial burdens onto potential alternative creditors. China, for instance, may take advantage of their devalued currencies to acquire assets and conduct transactions in yuan.

Ethiopia, while experiencing impressive economic growth, faces challenges stemming from the Tigray War, drought, and famine. Capital flight, estimated at over $45 billion over the last decade, exacerbates these issues. Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates have provided security assistance during the civil war, and China has become a significant foreign direct investor. Joining the BRICS consolidates these relationships, serving more as a pragmatic move than a diplomatic power play.

Iran, subjected to U.S. sanctions, now finds itself entangled with China.

Despite China’s diplomatic efforts, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates still consider Iran their greatest national security threat, given its support for various Middle East terrorist groups. Iran’s actions in the Persian Gulf region, including ship hijackings and territorial disputes, further escalate tensions. Joining the BRICS allows Saudi Arabia and the UAE to balance their security reliance on the U.S. with their economic relations with China and India, providing an additional diplomatic avenue with Iran if needed.

China and India, despite their economic interdependence, harbor significant geopolitical tensions. With a shared border of over 3,400 kilometers and various unresolved disputes, including those exacerbated by climate change, these two nations represent each other’s long-term geopolitical challenge. Joining the Quad, a security forum with Australia, Japan, and the United States, helps India balance its reliance on Russian weaponry and economic ties with China.

In contrast to the BRICS, Western institutions, united by democratic values, have a proven track record of success. NATO, for instance, has safeguarded North American and European democracies for nearly eight decades. While BRICS may pose concerns about “de-dollarization,” the United States remains the only country with the economic stability and a currency and banking system to guarantee international transactions. Moreover, the US continues to attract foreign talent, reinforcing its economic and technological prowess.

Despite the BRICS’ potential short-term economic influence, its divergent interests and internal tensions make it unlikely to pose a strategic threat to the United States. Washington’s extensive experience in building and managing complex alliances, such as NATO, AUKUS, and various bilateral partnerships, ensures its continued leadership in global diplomacy and security. The risk of the BRICS replacing or threatening the United States remains minimal.

Furthermore, the United States maintains its economic strength, with states like California, Texas, New York, and Florida boasting GDPs comparable to or exceeding those of entire countries. These factors reinforce the US’s resilience and attractiveness on the global stage.

While the BRICS may appear formidable on the surface, it lacks the cohesion, experience, and diplomatic prowess of Western institutions led by the United States. The likelihood of it becoming a significant strategic challenge to the US remains remote.


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