Shaping China’s Future Power

Three different perspectives on China’s rising power. In the New York Times, Roger Cohen writes:

Given China’s size, economic dynamism and evident self-belief, it seems unlikely that it can be dissuaded from the notion that its 21st-century future involves a great-power destiny. The question then becomes: How best to shape this process in the American interest? Through knuckle-rapping in the Rumsfeld style? Or through engagement? Or, if both, in what respective doses?

In the Washington Times, Suzanne Fields writes:

We’ve been lulled into thinking the Chinese brand of “free markets” will move that country toward democracy. Maybe someday, eventually, it will. But free markets must be accompanied by personal freedoms and representative government, and that isn’t happening. In fact, there are disturbing signs of a military build-up and deception about it at the highest levels of the Chinese government today.

And Richard N. Haass writes in U.S. News and World Report:

The performance of states is mostly the result of demographics, culture, natural resources, educational systems, economic policy, political stability, and foreign policy. It is not clear the United States could prevent China’s rise even if it wanted to. But should the United States want to? The answer is no. For one thing, attempting to block China’s rise would guarantee its animosity and all but ensure its working against U.S. interests around the world.

June 11, 2005 4:41 PM
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