What AUKUS Means for U.S.-China Great Power Competition

what aukus means for u s china great power competition

This is a hallmark of great power competition: Competitive initiatives like AUKUS provide visible ways to counter or balance or complicate China’s military activities but don’t necessarily help allies meet defined objectives. More often, competition becomes an end in itself — an open-ended imperative that assumes everything an opponent dislikes must be good policy. Another common feature of competitive policies is that officials tend to overlook their costs. For one thing, AUKUS carries significant diplomatic costs at a time when the United States is in desperate need of credibility with…

Wonking Out: This Might Be China’s ‘Babaru’ Moment

wonking out this might be chinas babaru moment

OK, who ordered that? You’d think that between Covid-19, climate change and U.S. democracy under siege, we would already have enough crises on our plate. A potential Chinese financial meltdown is the last thing we need. Yet here we are. The story of the moment is Evergrande, a huge, heavily indebted real estate company that appears on the edge of default. The echoes of the global financial crisis 13 years ago are obvious. The conventional wisdom is that Evergrande isn’t another Lehman Brothers, that any fallout from its woes, and…

China Pledges to Stop Building Coal Plants Abroad: Explained

china pledges to stop building coal plants abroad

Xi Jinping, China’s top leader, said on Tuesday that his country would stop building coal-burning power plants overseas, a major shift by the world’s second-biggest economy to move away from its support of the fossil fuel. China “will not build new coal-fired power projects abroad,” he told the United Nations General Assembly on Tuesday. The news comes amid a broad international effort to reduce coal use and to keep global temperatures from rising at their current pace, which scientists have warned could be disastrous. The announcement by China, which is…

Australia’s Submarine Deal Adds to Asia Arms Buildup

australias submarine deal adds to asia arms buildup

Positioning the hard-to-track submarines closer to seas near China, Japan and the Korean Peninsula could be a powerful deterrent against China’s military, said Drew Thompson, a former Pentagon official responsible for relations with China. “The Middle East wars have ended,” said Mr. Thompson, now a visiting senior research fellow at the National University of Singapore. “We are in an interwar period, and the next one will be a high-end, high-intensity conflict with a near-peer competitor, probably involving China, and most likely in northeast Asia.” After condemning the submarine agreement last…

Biden Taps Burns and Emanuel as Ambassadors to China and Japan

biden taps burns and emanuel as ambassadors to china and japan

WASHINGTON — President Biden on Friday nominated R. Nicholas Burns, a veteran Foreign Service officer and a former ambassador to NATO, as ambassador to China and Rahm Emanuel, the former mayor of Chicago and former President Barack Obama’s first chief of staff, as ambassador to Japan. Mr. Biden settled on both nominees months ago, people involved in the process said. But the official announcement was delayed in part because the United States needs the host countries to sign off on such selections before proceeding. The nominations were announced on Friday…