Can the US-China relationship be best described as a “new Cold War?” Experts discuss in this special debate episode.
The ChinaPower Podcast dissects critical issues underpinning China’s emergence as a global power. By bringing together the leading experts on China and international politics, the series offers our listeners critical insights into the challenges and opportunities presented by China’s rise. These extended discussions are hosted by the director of the China Power Project at the Center for Strategic and International Studies.
In this episode, Dr. Jeffrey Wilson joins us to discuss China’s expanding trade restrictions against Australia. Dr. Wilson analyzes China’s trade strategy of targeted geoeconomic sanctions and argues that Beijing’s goal is to maximize economic pain without hurting its own welfare. When considering whether China’s trade coercion against Australia is a violation of international law, Dr. Wilson contends that many of China’s actions fall into the grey zone. He discusses Canberra’s decision to file a case against China in the World Trade Organization and contends that Australia will be better positioned to fight the case if it has support from the international community. Finally, Dr. Wilson asserts that the future of China-Australia trade tensions may depend on how U.S.-China relations develop, since China views Australia as an ideal proxy for sending a message to the United States.
In this episode, Mr. Ankit Panda joins us to discuss China’s growing conventional missile arsenal and associated implications for military strategy and security in the Indo-Pacific region. He highlights the role of China’s ground-based missiles in the projection of military power, noting that an increased arsenal can hamper U.S. forces in the region and give the People’s Liberation Army increased maneuverability. Mr. Panda talks about the consequences of the U.S. withdrawal from the INF treaty and the political obstacles to an increased U.S. arsenal around China’s periphery. In addition, he explains the strategic implications of China’s dual-capable missile force, and specifically the DF-26 missile’s ability to rapidly convert between nuclear and conventional warheads. Finally, Mr. Panda analyzes the role of hypersonic glide vehicles, noting that while the underlying technology is not new, advances in materials science have allowed more countries to develop HGV systems.
In this episode, Dr. Darren Byler joins us to discuss China’s policies in Xinjiang and policy options for the international community. Dr. Byler analyzes the portrayal of Uyghur and Kazakh ethnic minorities in Xinjiang in comparison to other minorities in China and in relation to the Han majority. He describes how Chinese policymakers have shifted the discourse on policies towards Uyghur Muslims from concerns of “separatism” to concerns of “terrorism,” and evaluates the appropriateness of these terms to the Uyghur and Kazakh populations in Xinjiang. Finally, Dr. Byler discusses the camps in Xinjiang and the responses from the international community towards the camps, and offers suggestions for international policymakers moving forward.
In this episode, Mr. Bill Hayton joins us to discuss the genesis of China’s thinking about sovereignty and how this history shapes Chinese foreign policy today. He discusses the influence of Western notions of sovereignty on China during the Qing Dynasty and argues that the dynastic tribute system is still reflected to some extent in China’s current international relations. Mr. Hayton frames the volatile South China Sea situation in terms of sovereignty, describing control of the islands as a deeply emotional issue that is emblematic of national pride for China. He also explains how views of sovereignty could affect China’s approach to arms control, resulting in reluctance to accept third-party inspection of compliance with international treaties. Lastly, Mr. Hayton sheds light on China’s vision of an international stage characterized by relationships between individual and sovereign states rather than coalitions and blocs.
In this episode, Dr. Mikko Huotari joins us to discuss the evolving relationship between Europe and China. He highlights the multifaceted relationship between China and the European Union, noting that the EU has labeled China as both a strategic partner and a systemic rival. Dr. Huotari argues that while the coronavirus has been a driver of recent tensions in the Europe-China relationship, there has been a longer-term negative trend of worsening ties and a lack of progress on policy agendas between the EU and China. Dr. Huotari also evaluates the evolution of European sentiment towards China, security issues regarding China, and assesses the prospect for greater transatlantic cooperation between the United States and Europe on China policy.
In this episode, Mr. David Sandalow joins us to discuss China’s role in the global climate change agenda. Mr. Sandalow argues that Xi’s commitment in his speech to the UN General Assembly for China to become carbon-neutral by 2060 is an opportunity for China to present itself as a global leader on climate change policy. Mr. Sandalow also evaluates the progress China has made since signing the Paris Accords, how technological innovation will help China achieve its climate goals, and the potential impact of a Trump re-election or a Biden presidency on US-China cooperation to address climate change.
In this episode, Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for China Chad Sbragia joins us to discuss the 2020 Department of Defense (DoD) annual report to Congress entitled Military and Security Developments Involving the People’s Republic of China. Deputy Assistant Secretary Sbragia discusses a range of topics including China’s capacity to launch an assault on Taiwan, China’s nuclear strategy, the Belt and Road Initiative, military-civil fusion, and China’s perception of global governance. Mr. Sbragia also highlights the growing alignment between the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) and China’s broader national strategy, and he explores the implication of PLA modernization for stability and crisis prevention in the coming years.