No longer the world's policeman? The United States after Afghanistan withdrawal


On Tuesday, the US president marked the departure of the final troops from Afghanistan with a speech in which he insisted that foreign military intervention can solely be in cases of vital national security threats. What does that mean for other theatres of operation, like South Korea, the Sahel in Africa and all points where the world's largest army is deployed? Does the end of forever wars also mean the end of the US acting as the world's policeman? 


Since the September 11 attacks, the US has militarised foreign policy. And while it outspends by far all other countries on development aid, among G7 nations it spends by far the least as a share of its economy.

So what next? After a chaotic exit that's proved the low point so far of Joe Biden's tenure, will Americans see the rest of the world differently and learn from their intelligence and strategic failures in Afghanistan to better engage with allies and rivals? Or will Biden follow in the footsteps of his predecessor and lead a superpower bent on a new era of isolationism that marks the end of the current world order as we know it?

Produced by Alessandro Xenos, Juliette Laurain and Imen Mellaz.

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