The center of gravity of the global system, the US increasingly relies on regional alliance structures to protect its overseas interests. Extremely sensitive to threats to its stability, Russia needs to establish buffer zones throughout the region. Turkey is an emerging regional power that has rivals in all directions and faces competing forces in its periphery. China faces its biggest political and economic crises in a generation and grapples with structural trade challenges. The economic engine of the EU, Germany struggles to maintain the bloc’s trade ties and general cohesion.