Is China Trying to Bankrupt US? (Page 2 of 2)

Some Chinese strategists offer an explanation for the tests that have so inflamed US sensitivities that fits this grand design. One expert argues that China is hedging – the tests both maintain Chinese capabilities and signal the United States that it can’t hope to make ‘a technological breakout’ that China will not match. Beijing won’t let the US monopolize high-tech capabilities. The flip side of that logic is that China will do enough to keep the United States on alert, if not hypersensitive to Chinese actions, and that will drive US decision-making.

On the other hand, Henry Kissinger’s recent tome notwithstanding, most observers don’t credit the Chinese with the ability to be that strategic or far sighted, nor do they have a monolithic foreign policy establishment. In this context, the ASAT and fighter provocations could just as easily be explained as being the result of bureaucracies behaving badly, i.e., ministries failing to coordinate.

Most significantly, the success of the Cold War redux strategy – if it exists – depends on the United States surrendering the initiative to China. There’s little evidence that this is happening. But there is no mistaking the attention to Chinese developments and the potential threats they pose to US pre-eminence in the western Pacific, the protection of US and allied interests, and regional stability generally. That is the correct approach – but US decison makers shouldn’t hyperventilate about or overinflate the Chinese threat. As CSIS Pacific Forum President Ralph Cossa has noted, ‘When the Chinese finally deploy an operational aircraft carrier – and there is a big distinction between sea trials and becoming fully operational (measured in years, not months) – the proper US response should be to congratulate Beijing on finally  achieving the status of the Soviet (or Ukrainian) Navy, circa 1984.’

Some historians challenge the Cold War narrative upon which this ‘strategy’ is based, arguing that the Soviet Union collapsed from within with little help from the United States. That doesn't mean that the dangers of US implosion aren’t real, however.

Budget funds are tight. And, significantly, cracks are beginning to appear within the United States. National politics are increasingly polarized and paralyzed as the country debates how to get its economic house in order. A recent Wall Street Journal editorial told readers they have to choose between being a superpower or a welfare state. That is precisely the choice the new Cold Warriors would want us to face. Nothing could be more divisive or more capable of short-circuiting US politics. Nothing would be more detrimental to long-term US interests than to short-change the domestic investments needed to keep the country strong.

In addition, defence procurement has to be smarter and better focused. Force reductions are inevitable (and have been occurring) but they need not undermine US capabilities. Nor will they send the wrong signals to allies and adversaries if they are the result of a deliberate strategy.

Most important, the United States must better leverage its strengths, in particular its relationships with allies, friends and partners.

Alliances and relationships are force multipliers. The more tightly integrated the US and its allies, the more convincing the signal to potential adversaries that the United States is committed to the defence of those partners – in other words, it strengthens our deterrent. And that is the most important element of our security strategy in the Asia Pacific.

 

Brad Glosserman is executive director of the Pacific Forum CSIS in Honolulu.His opinion articles and commentary have appeared in the Japan Times,South China Morning PostInternational Herald Tribune and Asian Wall Street Journal, among other publications.

This is an edited version of an article that originally appeared at CSIS Pacnet.

Comments
110
Chris
October 16, 2012 at 03:35

Take you xenophobic, racist comments towards whites and "i hate the USA" attitude and shove it.  Your just another coward behind a computer screen.

Chris
October 16, 2012 at 03:31

Oh pleasseeee!  Your scare statement screams of far-leftism

known101
April 13, 2012 at 23:08

Do not blame China for your own foolish actions…they weren’t the ones who caused the 2008 crisis..

paul dubois
March 6, 2012 at 07:44

when you go to a store to buy products it says made in china

Aaron Crouse
December 23, 2011 at 12:08

are you all on crack its the fundimentalist christan wallstreet that bankrupted america because they are all about profit and dont care what happens to the economy and agaisnt taxing the only way a goverment can be ruin is to be taxed to pay for said goverment. china just bought our debt though i side with china were a corrupt hypocritical nation we say freedom but only mean it for us to rule the world and a selct group which is agaisnt our constitution by our founding fathers.

vino
December 16, 2011 at 08:53

India our growing to become a super power, FACT. just because there quite.

Hess
November 27, 2011 at 00:42

And it is bankrupt because she- America -thought (a fatal mistake) that the Muslim world is like communism, what a stupid assumption to make by a so-called a superpower, which is already in decline and frankly its future look very grim. Sure with the lobby who control almost everything in the US, Muslims are perceived as the Ghoul who’d take over the world; such thinking can only come from a child or someone who spent his life in a cave; an ignorant stupidity which plague America, and that’s my friend why America is bankrupt: it’s intellectually corrupt.

McGee
November 27, 2011 at 00:30

Is China Trying to Bankrupt US? No actually, it is israel who already done that Mr Glosserman.

chardi11
November 26, 2011 at 13:27

I HAVE A PROBLEM WITH MOST OF YOUR ARGUMENT. AS YOU DO NOT KNOW HOW THE WORLD WORKS. AL-KIDA, HEZBOLLAH, AL-JAZER, SHIITES AND SUNNIS, AND OTHER ORGANIZATIONS ARE MUCH THREATS AS ANY. THEY JUST HAPPEN TO BE TIED TO IRAN, PAKISTAN, IRAQ (BEFORE LIBERATION), AFGHANISTAN, RUSSIA AND CHINA. I DO NOT KNOW A WAR THAT TOOK PLACE WITH OUT A REASON. IF YOU QUESTION WHY, THEN YOU NEED TO GET INFORMED ABOUT THE WAY THE WORLD OPERATES. TRADE, CURRENCY, ECT. THERE WERE A WIDE VARIETY OF TREATS TO BOTH OF TRADE AND CURRENCY, AS WELL AS NATIONAL SECURITY. US INVADED IRAQ AS A STRATEGY OF WAR, LIKE RUSSIA WOULD PREFER TO SEND NUCLEAR WEAPONS MATERIALS TO IRAN AND CUBA. FOR WORLD INFLUENCE. YOU HAVE A CHOICE. SEEK THE HELP OF RUSSIANS AND CHINA TO DESTROY OUR WAY OF LIFE. EVENTUALLY YOU MEET OUT TROOPS. OR YOU SEEK PEACE AND TRADE WITH THE US AND YOU ARE MEET WITH MUTUAL TRADE. HARDLY ANY OF THOSE THING WORK WHEN THE COUNTRY PROMOTES TERROR JUST BECAUSE OF ILL FEELING. ILL FILLINGS CAN BE RESOLVE WITH MUTUAL CO-OPERATION.
IF ANYTHING I FIND IT TO BE ILL OF A COUNTRY TO ACCEPT THIS BEHAVIOR FROM A COUNTRY THAT IS CAPABLE OF DOING IT THEMSELVES. US IS INVOLVE IN MOST CONFLICTS OF THIS NATURE BECAUSE COUNTRIES LIKE CUBA AND RUSSIA PUSHING COMMUNIST BELIEFS ON OTHERS AND SHUTTING OUT THE TRUTH. DERANGING THE MINDS OF MILITIAS TO WAGE A WIN LESS WAR. WHILE THE ONES PUSHING THIS PROPAGANDA JUST SITS BACK AND COLLECTS AGAINST THE SECURITY OF THE US AND THE LIVES OF THE CIVILIANS THAT RESIDE IN THE MILITIA DRIVING COUNTRY.
WAR IS NOT PRETTY. THERE IS NO SIMPLE SOLUTION. US DID NOT INVADE IRAQ WITHOUT REASON. THERE ARE ALWAYS REASONS, AS UNCLEAR AS IT MAY SEEM. NO ONE WILL TELL YOU WHY BECAUSE THE ANSWER IS NEVER CLEAR. YOU HAVE TO READ HOW THESE TERRORIST ACTIVITIES TREAT THE US TO UNDERSTAND. KNOWING THE COUNTRY WOULD HELP. WINNING THE WAR IN IRAN, AFGHANISTAN, PAKISTAN, WILL NOT LIFT THE CIVILIANS WAY OF LIFE. ASK YOURSELF THEN WHY PICK ON AMERICA. OR ARE THEY JUST ILL EDUCATED ENOUGH TO GET PUSH IN THIS WAR BY ANOTHER MORE POWERFUL DICTATOR. ONE DICTATOR ORDERING ANOTHER DICTATOR. COUNTRIES DON’T JUST WAGE WAR JUST BECAUSE THEY THEY HATE THEM. THE GOVERNMENT TEACHES THEM TO HATE AMERICANS WITH SKEWED PROPAGANDA. IT IS BLACK PROPAGANDA. I ASSURE YOU THAT THE CITIZENS OF AFGHANISTAN, IRAN, AND PAKISTAN WILL NEVER BE LIBERATED BY THE PEOPLE THAT ARE IN POWER, THAT PROP UP COMMUNISM AND FASCISM.

Thomas
November 12, 2011 at 09:46

The West was already the largest military spender in this world long before China started developing! The West does not need an reason to spend more on their military, only an excuse and China is the new excuse!

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