Over the past few election cycles Congress passed a series of laws that enabled presidential candidates to begin preparing for transition immediately after obtaining their party’s nomination. This cycle a large number of Republican foreign policy professionals refused to support their party’s nominee, draining the pool of talent candidate Trump could draw upon to plan his transition. The Republican President-elect’s controversial decision to speak with Tsai Ing-wen, the President of the Republic of China (ROC), may be a consequence of these two developments. Read more >
Latest China Posts
December 3, 2016 11:30 AM EDT
President-elect Donald Trump has a reputation for being disruptive. But it was still surprising that he chose to break with convention and speak directly to Tsai Ing-wen, the President of the Republic of China (ROC) in Taiwan, despite the fact that the United States withdrew its official diplomatic recognition of the ROC in 1979 as a precondition for establishing diplomatic relations with the People’s Republic of China (PRC). Read more >
October 4, 2016 12:13 PM EDT
Fifty-nine years ago today, the Soviet Union launched Sputnik into orbit, setting off a panic in the United States that contributed to the evolution of a “space race” between the two superpowers.
Last week, Congress held a hearing on the question of whether the United States was losing a new space race with China. Unfortunately, the witnesses seemed more interested in re-creating the alarmism of the Sputnik era than in offering Congress an accurate picture of the Chinese space program. This raises doubts about the value of the hearing’s contribution to congressional perspectives on US-China relations in space. Read more >
September 7, 2016 9:47 AM EDT
Many US observers believe anti-satellite (ASAT) attacks could be China’s trump card in a major military confrontation with the United States. But the reality may be exactly the opposite. The United States could have more to gain, and China more to lose, from taking the fight to outer space. A US presidential decision to pursue this advantage would make the United States, not China, the protagonist in a new space arms race that would undermine the security of both nations. Read more >
August 3, 2016 3:19 PM EDT
There are US defense and foreign policy experts who assert that history proves the United States should retain the option to use nuclear weapons to prevent non-nuclear attacks against the United States and its allies. The evidence supporting that assertion is questionable.
The historical record in Europe is ambiguous. Although there was no Soviet attack against Western Europe during the Cold War it is difficult to prove US threats to use nuclear weapons were responsible for preventing it. There is convincing evidence, however, that the fear of US nuclear weapons failed to deter the People’s Republic of China (PRC) from attacking US forces in Korea. Read more >