Summers: Chinese, Russian Influence in Middle East Show U.S. Is Losing Ground Worldwide

During an interview aired on Friday’s broadcast of Bloomberg’s “Wall Street Week,” Harvard Professor, economist, Director of the National Economic Council under President Barack Obama, and Treasury Secretary under President Bill Clinton, Larry Summers said that the Chinese-brokered diplomatic deal between Saudi Arabia and Iran and Saudi Arabia drawing closer to Russia symbolize America losing influence and “a growing sense that ours may not be the best fragment to be associated with.”

Summers stated, “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. We are on the right side of history with our commitment to democracy, with our resistance to aggression in Russia. We are very much on the right side of history, but it’s looking a bit lonely.”

He added, “I think there’s a growing acceptance of fragmentation, and, maybe even more troubling, I think there’s a growing sense that ours may not be the best fragment to be associated with. 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.”

Follow Ian Hanchett on Twitter @IanHanchett


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