Southeast Asia wants to manage China’s growth, not be pressured into a situation where it must choose sides.
Risking a nuclear conflict with China undermines the livelihood and prosperity of all. But such a choice can and should be avoided in the foreseeable future.
Western commentators hoping that the Evergrande crisis is a sign of Chinese decline are mistaken. The CCP will neither let Evergrande blow up or bail them out.
Kazakhstan’s unrest has shown that politics must be viewed not only through the lens of great power competition, but also through local economic and political concerns.
Even the presence of nuclear-powered submarines presents a variety of challenges for Australia. Would these submarines be permitted to dock in New Zealand, a sworn opponent of nuclear proliferation with whom Australia maintains significant interoperability and operational overlap? Would these submarines be more obvious to Chinese passive sonar in the South China Sea than their diesel power counterparts?
China’s military build-up, aggressive attitude in international waters, contested territory claims and new trade deals have weakened the United States' position in the Pacific. Although the United States is down, it is not out yet. The United States is still the world's largest economy and one of, if not the most, influential nations in the world. These determinants mean that the United States can recover its position if it plays its cards right.
Keeping Islamabad's unacceptable behavior in mind, it makes little sense to continue providing Pakistan with the support America has in the past. Instead, Washington should prioritize forming stronger partnerships with countries such as India, which would make a great ally as a result of shared interests against China.
When it comes to forging “grassroots” alliances, the kind which were predominant and key to tactical gains in Afghanistan, the United States cannot be relied upon to protect the people on the ground.
ISIS-K presents a unique challenge to the Taliban, many of whom have experience as fighters but few of whom are experts in governance. ISIS-K seeks to dissolve nation-state borders and establish an Islamic caliphate with Afghanistan at its heart.
The anecdote to this current ‘crackpot era’ is actual realism and restraint when it comes to China. This means not succumbing to the belief that this competition is a zero-sum contest that will determine the fate of liberalism or falling for romantic Orientalist narratives that situate China-US competition in a grand arc of history.