June 10, 2009
Below the Surface
The 20th anniversary earlier this month of the Tiananmen tragedy has given China-watchers an opportunity to take stock of their analyses over the past two decades. And, given the recent media and policy attention lavished on China’s maritime ambitions, it is worth looking back at Western studies of the Chinese navy and its impressive advances in recent years.
However, a closer look at many of those predictions shows, at best, a patchy record of success – and, at worst, some worrying analytical shortcomings.