This episode discusses U.S.-China relations with a focus on the relationship between the two countries’ militaries. The two countries militaries plan to conduct joint disaster relief exercises in China’s Yunnan Province this month, established a Strategic Security Dialogue in 2012, and also participated in the Rim of the Pacific naval exercises. This episode dissects the strategic and operational context of military-to-military relations in terms of the objectives of each country. Dr. Saunders discusses the significance of key achievements in U.S.-China military relations and offers thoughts on how relations can be improved, persistent challenges in the relationship, and ways to mitigate distrust.
Phillip C. Saunders is Director of the Center for the Study of Chinese Military Affairs and a Distinguished Research Fellow at National Defense University’s Institute for National Strategic Studies. He is co-author of The Paradox of Power: Sino-American Strategic Restraint in an Era of Vulnerability and co-editor of five books on Chinese military and security issues. Saunders previously worked at the Monterey Institute of International Studies, where he was Director of the East Asia Nonproliferation Program from 1999-2003, and served as an officer in the U.S. Air Force from 1989-1994.