The Foreign Service Journal, April 2024

THE FOREIGN SERVICE JOURNAL | APRIL 2024 19 China’s rise and Russia’s revanchism pose daunting geopolitical challenges in a world of intense strategic competition in which the United States no longer enjoys uncontested primacy and in which existential climate threats are mounting. Complicating matters further is a revolution in technology even more sweeping than the Industrial Revolution or the beginning of the nuclear age. From microchips to artificial intelligence to quantum computing, emerging technologies are transforming the world, including the profession of intelligence. —CIA Director and Career Ambassador William J. Burns, in “Spycraft and Statecraft,” Foreign A airs, Jan. 30, 2024. Contemporary Quote U.S. Is Soft Power Superpower The U.S. has been selected as the world’s soft power superpower for the third consecutive year by Brand Finance. is year the London-based consulting group ranked all 193 United Nations member states based on eight “soft power pillars” and 35 “nation brand attributes.” e U.S. earned the top spot in attributes such as “leader in science,” “in uential in arts and entertainment,” and “helpful to countries in need.” But it dropped in the rankings in “great place to visit,” “safe and secure,” and “good relations with other countries.” e report’s authors explain this decline is due to “internal security challenges around gun violence and police brutality, as well as involvement in international con icts.” Laurence Newell, a managing director at Brand Finance Americas, said in a release: “As we approach the 2024 elections, there’s growing concern about the integrity of democratic values. is uncertainty re ects ongoing polarization and the lingering impact of past events, such as the January 6th Capitol attack.