ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

What is the post-Cold War world system?

Updated on September 1, 2011

There are many arguments and views on the current world system. Some people consider the current post-Cold War world system to be multipolar. A multipolar system occurs when there are multiple, equal powers around the world. They all have competing economies and participate in trade. We have several large, powerful countries that seem to be pretty self-sufficient. Japan, China, Europe, and the United States all seem to be very similar in terms of political power.

Other people argue that the world was entering a unipolar system. In this system, the entire world relies on one superpower. Most people consider this to be the current world system because everyone relies on the U.S. in some sort of way.

Another view on the post-Cold War world system is the counterweight system. Instead of the entire world leaning on the U.S., they could all possibly team up and oppose the U.S. instead. Their combined power would be enough to counterweight the U.S. power. This system is unrealistic because too many countries rely on the U.S. for help.

The final world system is a stratified system. It consists of 3 layers. The first layer is made up of rich, high-tech countries. The second layer is made of industrializing, middle-class countries. The third layer is described as chaotic, third world countries. The U.S. is unable to avoid the third layer of countries because of the resources they provide, such as oil. They also cannot take over the third layer countries because of violence, religious differences, and drug cartels.

A lot of countries all lean on the United States in some sort of way, so a multipolar system is unrealistic. Critics of the unipolar system argue that while the U.S. is a military superpower, that other political and economical conditions limit its leadership abilities. The counterweight system is also unrealistic because the majority of countries outside the U.S. are unable to come to political agreements in order to team up against the U.S.

In one sense, the world is a unipolar system because all countries rely on the U.S. in one way or another. On the other hand, the stratified world system also seems to be the closest to reality today. The U.S., Europe, and China are the first layer, high-tech countries. Other countries are industrializing at a steady rate, but still not to the level of the U.S. The third level countries are made up of countries such as Somalia, Columbia, and Afghanistan. Ideally, the U.S. would like to avoid these countries but it can be difficult. The pirates in Somalia, the drug cartels in Columbia, and the terrorist in Afghanistan all make in necessary for us to be involved with these countries.


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment
    • cblack profile imageAUTHOR


      7 years ago from a beach somewhere

      I agree with you all. China will beat out the US. Maybe India too. ALso, moneycop, I sure hope there is!

    • SilentReed profile image


      7 years ago from Philippines

      Everyone is looking at China as the next economic power with many western corporation formulating their future plans and investments with the Chinese consumers in mind.But let us not forget India which is expected to overtake China in terms of population growth because of China's policy on family planning.India will be a huge potential market in consumer goods which will spur economic development and activity .With several military encounters between the two countries expect it to spill into the economic arena too.

    • CHRIS57 profile image


      7 years ago from Northern Germany

      Interesting to read your hub.

      But have you looked S.P. Huntingtons "Clash of Civilizations.."? Was written in the early 90ties, in the aftermath of the cold war when the US administration, Bush sen., wanted to know what to expect in generations after the cold war.

      It is view on civilizations, different cultures and religions and their impact on future developments. I got a hold of a newly edited version. Didn´t have to be changed much, only the development of China was underestimated a little, not by its nature but by its speed and drive.

      The time of western superiority is over. The last superpower will perish sooner or later. Chinese mentality of Confucian and Tao morals pulls up front. And don´t underestimate South America or the sheer population growth of islamic countries.

      There is more to it than leaning the weak on stronger poles.

    • moneycop profile image


      7 years ago from JABALPUR

      there may be outside this earth some one more powerfull then us and we all....nice hub?

    • profile image

      Nick Lucas 

      7 years ago

      Interesting piece.....I learned something new as I did not know these terms or labels before.....thank you!


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)