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Customer Review

6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A book of 3 parts., 30 Jan. 2011
This review is from: Next 100 Years, The (Paperback)
The Next 100 Years : A Forecast for the 21st Century by George Friedman is a book of 3 parts. Great, fantastical, and good. George takes us on a journey of macro socio, politico, eco, and geo (and a mix of all 4) and by tracing back through history and cycles within it, has forecast what he believes to be the power struggles over the next century.

It is fascinating stuff initially, where he defines fault lines in terms of tension points around the globe and which countries will strive to make political, economic, social or geographical moves and against whom as the balance of power within continents shift and moves. It's certainly interesting stuff and as he acknowledges, he presents this in the full knowledge that he won't be around to see whether he was right or wrong (but he will I'm sure have made a good living from doing it) and so you can't really challenge his assumptions (or forecasts) too greatly.

Where the book gets a bit fantastical is around 2050 when we have the description of a world war, controlled by space centers, and troops in robotic "Iron Man" type costumes being fed electricity from Solar beams that have been microwave blasted down from solar panels on the moon. The realities of the first main section of the book seem light years away at this point (and who am I again to really challenge these assumptions?) but it does come back down to Earth again as we conclude the century with Mexico and the US in a power struggle for the control of North America.

I have read reviews of this book that suggest that it is too central to America as the power base in the world, but as a non-American, I feel that this is probably justified as the start-point for the book is where we are today and you can't really debate the influence America has on the world, whether you like it nor not.

I enjoyed the majority of the book. The 2050 war and the whole space thing began feeling like reading some science fiction novel and that was at extreme odds to the very well structured and explained first and third section forecasts, but nonetheless this was an interesting and enjoyable read.
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Location: Farnham, Surrey

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