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China is now a global actor of significant and growing importance. It is active in regions and on issues that were once only peripheral to its interests, and it is effectively using tools previously unavailable. It is no longer appropriate to talk of integrating China into the international system; by and large, it is already there. Its international behavior is clearly altering the dynamics of the current international system, but it is not transforming its structure.

China's global activism is continually changing and has so many dimensions that it immediately raises questions about its current and future intentions and the implications for global stability and prosperity. This study examines how China views its security environment, how it defines its international objectives, how it is pursuing these objectives, and the consequences for U.S. economic and security interests.

Table of Contents

  • Chapter One

    Introduction

  • Chapter Two

    China's Foreign Policy Outlook

  • Chapter Three

    Current Perceptions of the International Security Environment

  • Chapter Four

    China's Foreign Policy Objectives

  • Chapter Five

    China's Expanding Diplomatic Toolkit

  • Chapter Six

    China's Foreign Policy Actions

  • Chapter Seven

    Challenges Facing Chinese Diplomacy

  • Chapter Eight

    Conclusions

Book Review Excerpts

"China’s International Behavior discusses two contrasting aspects of Chinese foreign policy—the country’s rise and the corresponding growth of political, strategic and economic challenges—in a professional and comprehensive format, making the book obligatory reading both for newcomers to the subject and for seasoned scholars."

- International Affairs, March 2010

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The research described in this report was sponsored by the United States Air Force and conducted by RAND Project AIR FORCE.

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