China-US Relations Transformed: Perspectives and Strategic Interactions (Routledge Contemporary China)
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China’s emergence in the 21st century to the status of great power has significant implications for its relationship with the United States, the sole superpower in the post-Cold War World. Now that China is rising as an economic, political, and military power and has expanded its diplomatic activism beyond Asia into Europe, Latin America, Africa, and the Middle East, its rise has profoundly transformed its relationship with the US and compelled leaders in both countries to redefine their positions toward each other. This book, written by leading scholars and policy analysts from both the US and China, explores the transformation and multifaceted nature of US-China relations, including how the political elite in both countries have defined their strategic objectives in response to China’s rise and managed their relations accordingly. It provides an up-to-date analysis on the policy adjustments of the last decade, and covers all the important issue areas such as security, nuclear deterrence, military modernization, energy, trade and economic interaction, and Asia-Pacific power reconfiguration. It does not seek to confirm either an alarmist or optimistic position but presents different views and assessments by foreign policy specialists with the hope that leaders in Washington and Beijing may make positive adjustments in their policies to avoid confrontation and war. It will also be an invaluable resource for students and scholars of US and Chinese politics, international relations and comparative politics.
terrorism, all mitigate against the reunification issue deteriorating to the point of hostilities. Third, there is little indication that the Chinese military’s strategic paradigm is going to change significantly in the near future. The PLA remains dominated by the army, with the navy only as strong as specific maritime-associated national interests justify. Current PLAN modernization seems fueled by increased national revenues rather than by a reordering of budgeting priorities within the PLA.
Rejecting Western demands, however, did not mean that the Chinese government did not wish to maintain and develop relations with the West. On the contrary, it was keenly aware of the fact that it badly needed a peaceful international environment for domestic reforms and development. In its efforts to secure such an environment, the Chinese government decided that it should take a low-key posture on international affairs so as to minimize external attention on China and interference with China’s
mainstay, the bilateral interaction must involve dialogue, coordination, competition, pressure, hedge and so on. Nevertheless, it does generally reflect the Bush administration’s optimism and positive attitude towards Sino-U.S. relations. Third, the Bush administration’s call for China to become a “responsible stakeholder” demonstrates that Washington wants to hold onto its dominance in claiming initiatives over the discourse of bilateral relations. It is natural that China and the U.S.A. adjust
of view, a key factor with regard to relations with China in the future is China’s attitude toward the current international order. In this respect, as suggested by China’s world outlook and security concepts, the common interests and consensus the two sides can find are obviously more pronounced than any differences between them. Both the U.S.A. and China benefit enormously from the existing international system, though both sides are not quite satisfied with some of the elements of the system
international norms supported by the US government.”33 In its discussion the QDR labels China a great-power competitor, making the manage- The game behind the engagement strategy 151 ment of China’s disruptive capabilities the logical policy prescription. In June 2006 Rumsfeld argued that the pace and scope of Beijing’s strategic forces’ modernization was a cause for concern and that its lack of transparency justified international reaction to hedge against the unknown and the development of