I guess it all depends on how you measure the most powerful nation. If you're looking at pure military power, or 'hard power', it's obviously the
United States. No question there.
If you measure by economic power however, it is undoubtedly China. Just have a look around you at all the stuff that's 'Made in China'. No one from
the Tibet movement has outwardly suggested boycotting China's products, because we wouldn't have much left to use.
You can disagree with me about China being economically powerful. But you have to remember, the 'States is currently borrowing an enormous amount of
cash from China to fund the Iraq war - it's a war that's costing $5000 a second you know. That debt is piling up.
Then you have other Middle Eastern countries that hold control of the world's oil supply. If America is so powerful, why was Dick Cheney pleading
with OPEC leaders, namely the Saudis, to release more oil because it was hurting Americans? But still, they didn't release more oil, they're capping
it at 32 million barrels per day, and oil rose to $117 in the last session of trading.
Further, there's talk of China and other nations dumping the US dollar altogether and trading in Euros. Heck, even the Australian dollar is around
the US$0.94 mark.
As for destroying Iran, they control sea lanes that a large majority of the world's oil flows through. In any event of an attack, the first thing
they would do would be to severely disrupt oil supplies, and many nations, including the US, would have to use their contingency oil supplies.
Attacking another Arab nation would inflame the entire Muslim community around the world, and who knows what effect that would have.
Iraq was invaded under false pretenses. There was no weapons of mass destruction, just the 'tubes' and other odd pieces of equipment and chemicals
that America itself sold to Iraq in the 80s. Then the reason for invasion was 'democracy'. Now, it's just to piece the country back together again,
even to get the sewers, water, and electricity working again.
Remember how Rumsfeld spoke about the 'evil dictator'?