A range of issues and events in Europe and the Middle East have prevented the Obama Administration from fully committing to its proposed “rebalance” to the Asia-Pacific region. But beginning next week when he travels to the region, the President will have another opportunity to put relations with China and other regional partners in the spotlight. Kissinger Institute Director Robert Daly provides a preview of the trip in this edition of Wilson Center NOW.
In partnership with the China Overseas Exchange Association, we invite you to an exhibit of photographs and artifacts from the period of Sino-U.S. alliance during WWII. The exhibit will be display on Woodrow Wilson Plaza and on the 4th and 5th floors of the Wilson Center through October 21, 2014.
Crowds of protesters are shrinking, talks are scheduled, but frustrations on both sides remain. While many in the press and elsewhere are quick to reference the 1989 Tiananmen Square protests, Robert Daly explains how what’s happening today is different in many ways.
"This is a key moment for the students. The chief executive is certainly not going to leave and the crowds are now smaller than they have been; it is reasonable to assume that those who remain are more radical, are willing to go a little bit further," says Robert Daly.
"Hong Kong’s problem will continue for as long as the structural sources of conflict cannot be addressed. The identity crises in Hong Kong, Xinjiang, Taiwan, and Tibet will surely become Beijing’s real tests and dilemmas. How well the Chinese leadership deals with these crises will determine China’s rise and future development," writes Global Fellow Zheng Wang.
"At first glance, Russia's ally China seems to be in big trouble, with the protests in Hong Kong and fears of a new Tiananmen Square. Yet they might be overblown. Given the current situation in Hong Kong, China’s most likely course of action is to make some concessions, arrest protest leaders and discipline local authorities," writes Fellow Jack Goldstone.
Chinese leaders have identified U.S. and Western culture as threats to Chinese values and society. But as China becomes more engaged with the world, is it possible to encourage foreign investment while avoiding the power of pop culture?
Despite cabinet-level meetings in Beijing and joint military exercises in the Pacific, July saw a continuation in trends that have experts in Beijing and Washington increasingly concerned about the course of bilateral relations. China’s rejection of America’s call for a construction freeze in the South China Sea reinforced worldwide impressions that the PRC is assertive and the U.S. ineffectual.
Tensions over security, access, and environmental impacts in the Arctic are rising. While members of the Arctic Council (Canada, Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, Russia, Sweden, the United States) assert their established rights under new circumstances, an increasing number of non-Arctic states (including China, Korea, Japan, and Singapore) seek an active role in the region. In this video series, "Who Owns the Arctic?" an international panel of experts describes why one of the world’s coldest environments is becoming a hot topic.
Tensions over territorial claims continue to percolate in the South China Sea. Questions and concerns about China’s intentions and actions are hot topics in the Philippines and Vietnam. Can the U.S., given the stated intention to “rebalance to Asia,” play an important role in sorting out competing claims?