Foreign Policy

As the United States takes action, diplomatically and militarily, in the Asian region, the US has been seen as attempting to contain China. Justin Logan assesses this claim, and introduces the idea that the United States is indeed acting to contain China not so much economically, but militarily.

President Xi Jingping’s recent visit to South Korea was a rebuff to North Korea’s defiance of China’s warnings not to conduct nuclear or missile tests. If the United States incentivizes the Chinese government to incur the risks of abandoning the North Korean regime, Beijing might be willing to dump Pyongyang and treat Seoul as its future partner on the Peninsula.

Relations between China and South Korea continue to improve. Their two governments have developed a strong economic partnership and managed their security differences over North Korea and other issues well. Surveys of South Korean public opinion show a remarkable rise in popular assessments of China and its policies. Nevertheless, South Korea remains a reliable U.S. ally and security partner and Beijing’s options regarding Seoul are seriously constrained as long as China remains committed to sustaining North Korea as a buffer state.

Chinese President Xi Jinping recently made a trip to South Korea to further three objectives, according to Mel Gurtov. Given these three objectives, Gurtov analyzes and discusses their implications. More broadly, he also analyzes the implications of President Xi Jinping’s trip in general.

While it is rumored that Chinese President Xi Jinping requested the BRICS Summit in Brazil be held in July so he could attend the World Cup, Fernando Menéndez argues that China’s president should have more on his mind than a football game and highlights the significance of the upcoming BRICS Summit.

The recently concluded Strategic & Economic Dialogue, as well as the Consultation on People-to-People Exchange both provide opportunities for high-level annual institutional dialogue, writes Shen Dingli.

S&ED

China and the US have reaffirmed the right approach to manage their differences in the China-US Strategic and Economic Dialogue and the High-level Consultation on People-to-People Exchange. However, both sides must translate their strategic consensus into actual policies. Some examples of policy areas deserving more attention include the Bilateral Investment Treaty, cooperation on climate change issues, and strengthened military-to-military relations.

BRICS

Expectations about the upcoming BRICS meeting in Brazil on July 15 are high, with many of the participant leaders aiming for the meeting to be a success for various political reasons. Eric Farnsworth analyzes these expectations, as well as the topics on the BRICS agenda for discussion.

On July 1, Abe’s government lifted a constitutional ban on collective self-defense. The US, initially indifferent to this development, later expressed its support, despite strong rhetoric condemning Japanese aggression and behavior during WWII. It is necessary for China to properly develop its relationship with the U.S. in order to prevent Japan from further deviating from a peaceful path.

While borrowing Chinese President Xi’s hope that the United States would take into consideration the Chinese perspective when it comes to territorial disputes in the East and South China Seas, Wang Dong criticizes widely spread US misperception and misunderstanding of China’s foreign policy behavior, and argues that the absence of the Chinese perspective may have led to much of the misreading of China’s behavior.

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