The Impact of Regionalism and the Role of the G20
Edited by Jehoon Park, T. J. Pempel and Geng Xiao
Chapter 13: Sino–US Relations: Possible Trends and Implications for the East Asia Community
Liu Yongtao1 13.1 INTRODUCTION With China’s steady economic growth and social development, and profound changes in the United States in the post-9/11 era, the first decade of the 21st century has witnessed dramatic and dynamic interactions between China and the United States (US), whose relationship has been claimed as one of the most crucial and complicated interstate relationships in world politics. Much research has been done on the nature of this complicated Sino– US relationship in the 21st century from various perspectives regarding aspects of cooperation, competition, disagreements and even contests (Foot and Walter, 2010; Friedberg, 2011; Rosecrance and Gu, 2010; Sun, 2011; Sutter, 2010; Zhao, 2007; Zhu, 2006). Instead of accumulating, or adding more comments on, existing data, this chapter focuses on possible trends of the Sino–US relationship in security politics and their implications for the East Asia community. What are the possible scenarios of security politics that the early 21st century may witness in East Asia? How will Sino–US relations look in those possible scenarios? And which scenario, among them, is most likely to emerge as the dominant one in East Asia? To answer these questions, the chapter takes an approach that combines material and normative perspectives, aiming at sketching several imaginary pictures in which possible trends of the Sino–US relationship in security politics are examined in the hope that refining and filtering these pictures rationally may help provide a meaningful sense for the (re)construction of a political and security relationship that is of...
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