Home / Articles / A Rising Naval Challenger in Asia: Lessons from Britain and Japan between the Wars
The end of Great Britain’s standing as a superpower conjures up a frightening picture of how a post-American world might come about, not by a gradual, managed decline of the United States, but rather by a sudden defeat at sea. Some 70 years ago, Britain’s navy suffered staggering losses at the hands of an emerging peer competitor in Asia. Could a reversal of fortune of this magnitude—the world’s leading naval power being soundly beaten by a rising challenger—happen again? Britain’s naval downfall in Asia provides a sobering parable, warning of potential dangers looming for the United States in the twenty-first century.