In a Friday interview, Harvard Professor Larry Summers argued that the diplomatic deal brokered by the Chinese Communist Party between Saudi Arabia and Iran — along with Saudi Arabia growing closer to Russia — symbolize the decreasing influence of the United States and “a growing sense that ours may not be the best fragment to be associated with.”
Summers — an economist who served as Director of the National Economic Council under former President Barack Obama and Treasury Secretary under former President Bill Clinton — appeared on Friday’s broadcast of Bloomberg’s “Wall Street Week” to discuss the banking crisis and the state of the U.S. economy. The conversation turned to growing concerns about the United States’ influence worldwide.
“I think what’s happening in the Middle East and it’s the Saudi-Russian thing…it’s the Chinese-brokered restoration of diplomatic relations between Saudi [Arabia] and Iran, is a symbol of something that I think is a huge challenge for the United States,” he began.
Summers went on to assert that the U.S. is “on the right side of history” with their meddling in the Russia-Ukraine war — despite critics saying that it is appearing increasingly likely that the Biden administration’s aid to Ukraine pushes the U.S. closer to World War III.
“We are on the right side of history with our commitment to democracy, with our resistance to aggression in Russia,” he said. “We are very much on the right side of history, but it’s looking a bit lonely.”
The economist then pointed out that there is a “growing acceptance of fragmentation” around the world — and said that he believes there is a “growing sense” that the U.S. “may not be the best fragment to be associated with.”
Summers also mentioned that he had been told that developing countries prefer the infrastructure they are being given by China to the “lectures” they are given by the United States.
“Somebody from a developing country said to me, what we get from China is an airport. What we get from the United States is a lecture. We like your values better than we like theirs, but we like airports more than we like lectures,” he said.
Summers isn’t the only one who believes that the U.S. may be losing influence in the world. Conservative author and filmmaker Dinesh D’Souza recently made similar claims — saying that some people across the world are beginning to see the U.S. as an “evil empire.”
Here are two of the latest indications of how fast the US is losing influence. Soon we might even be perceived as an “evil empire.” pic.twitter.com/Rdl0QUHTBA
— Dinesh D'Souza (@DineshDSouza) April 12, 2023