Tensions are rising in the South China Sea, where China moved a state-owned oil rig, reportedly accompanied by six warships, into disputed waters last month, triggering anti-Chinese demonstrations in Vietnam that resulted in four deaths. Beijing has denied reports indicating the presence of Chinese warships in the region, while Hanoi has threatened legal action.
Some critics claim that the People's Bank of China is contriving to weaken the yuan's value to promote Chinese exports and stimulate the country's lagging growth. But the yuan's true value may be lower than some popular estimates.
Russian President Vladimir Putin would prefer to avoid further military action, but movement of Russian troops into eastern Ukraine is still possible if Putin is unable to extend his influence and prevent the country from aligning with the European Union.
On April 30, experts, scholars, and government analysts gathered at RAND Corporation offices in Arlington, Va., to evaluate changing Chinese strategic thinking on threat perceptions, doctrine, and strategic concepts for employing military power to advance national goals.
As much as China may wish to lean on Russia should Beijing find itself at odds with the United States, Xi seeks a new type of great power relationship with the United States that calls for mutual respect, no confrontation, and cooperation.
The United States doesn't care about a few islands half a world away, but it should care about how China throws its weight around, how it relates to its neighbors, and what it thinks it can get away with.
The current negotiations with Iran designed to eliminate its nuclear weapons capability seem to lack a broader strategic objective: stabilizing the Middle East with a regional balance of power. What does the China experience tell us about prospects for a strategic breakthrough with Iran?
The ongoing row between China and Japan over a chain of islands in the East China Sea escalated sharply last week when Beijing declared an “air defense zone” over the disputed territory. If China's intention was to force Japan to the negotiating table, Beijing's plan appears to have backfired.