China and the Uses of Uncertainty

The regional status quo in Northeast Asia appears to have self-destructed over the last few years. North Korea has announced that it possesses nuclear weapons and, with its most recent test, may have kicked down the door to the nuclear club. Japan has already stepped out from under its “peace constitution,” and it is no… Continue reading China and the Uses of Uncertainty


Chinese Multilateralism or U.S. Bilateralism

China has embarked on a vigorous policy of engagement with regional institutions in Asia. From the steppes of Central Asia to the resource-rich waters of Southeast Asia, Beijing has implemented its own version of Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s “good neighbor policy.” But this playing-well-with-others approach has presented China watchers with an intriguing riddle. Is China’s new… Continue reading Chinese Multilateralism or U.S. Bilateralism


China: What’s the Big Mystery?

The latest recruitment brochure from the Central Intelligence Agency, which beckons the uninitiated to “be a part of a mission that’s larger than all of us,” opens to reveal an image of the red-roofed entrance to Beijing’s Forbidden City. From an oversized portrait on the ancient wall, Chairman Mao and his Mona Lisa smile behold… Continue reading China: What’s the Big Mystery?

China, US Foreign Policy

The Perils of Imperial Indigestion

The United States currently spends more than $400 billion a year on the military. This is nearly one-half of the entire global expenditure on military affairs. Two nearest U.S. rivals in military spending, China and Russia, are not even close: combined, they spend only one-fourth of what the Pentagon does. North Korea spends about 1… Continue reading The Perils of Imperial Indigestion


Washington Woos and Boos Beijing

  Call it the “wooing and booing” strategy.  Washington is reaching out to Beijing on such issues as North Korea’s nuclear program and the “war on terrorism.”  At the same time, the Bush administration is blaming China for America’s trade deficit and gearing up to slam Beijing on human rights at the United Nations next… Continue reading Washington Woos and Boos Beijing


One China, Two Headaches

Backing both the favorite and the underdog in a boxing match might win points for evenhandedness, but it would leave sports fans scratching their heads. In the battle of affections between China and Taiwan, though, the Bush administration has done just that. Both countries have been led to believe that they are enjoying the best… Continue reading One China, Two Headaches