Issue Brief posted April 9, 2013
Kerry’s First Visit to Asia: Where Is the Pivot?
While testifying before Congress regarding his nomination to be Secretary of State, then-Senator John Kerry indicated that he was uncomfortable with the Administration’s “pivot to Asia” and indicated that, in his view, this was neither necessary nor wise.
Whether then-Senator Kerry was enunciating a new position is unclear, as Deputy Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter…
Issue Brief posted February 23, 2013
Chinese Cyber Attacks: Robust Response Needed
After a multi-year investigation, the computer security firm Mandiant announced this week that it had tracked a cyber group back to its Chinese roots. Even more explosive, it had concluded that the group is, in fact, a Chinese military unit, the Second Bureau of the Third Department of the General Staff Department of the Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA), with the…
Issue Brief posted February 12, 2013
China’s Xi Jinping’s New Hard Line and the U.S.–Japan Alliance
Two recent speeches by new Chinese leader Xi Jinping have attracted attention, providing the first insights into the views of China’s new leadership. One is focused on China’s internal political situation; the other discusses Chinese foreign policy. In combination, they could indicate the direction of Chinese policy for the next 10 years of Xi Jinping’s tenure as senior…
Issue Brief posted January 18, 2013
Kerry, Hagel, and Brennan Senate Confirmation Hearings: U.S. Policy on Asia
In the coming weeks, the United States Senate will begin the confirmation process for three key Administration positions: Senator John Kerry (D–MA) for Secretary of State, former Senator Chuck Hagel (R–NE) for Secretary of Defense, and White House chief counterterrorism advisor John Brennan for director of the CIA. All three have been prominent backers of President…
Backgrounder posted November 26, 2012
Winning Without Fighting: Chinese Public Opinion Warfare and the Need for a Robust American Response
Abstract : Over the past decade, the People's Republic of China has exhibited a growing interest in waging asymmetrical warfare. The purpose of this interest is chilling: to enable the PRC to win a war against the U.S. without firing a shot. To this end, the PRC is expanding potential areas of conflict from the purely military (i.e., involving the direct or indirect use…
Issue Brief posted October 11, 2012
China’s New Aircraft Carrier Joins the Fleet
With the official acceptance of the Liaoning into the People’s Liberation Army Navy (PLAN), China now has its own aircraft carrier. From Beijing’s perspective, this is a landmark event, as China had long been the only member of the U.N. Security Council’s permanent five nations (the veto-wielders) not to have an aircraft carrier of its own.
It is important, however,…
Special Report posted October 11, 2012
The Complicated History of U.S. Relations with China
Trade, Faith, and Freedom: The Foundations of U.S. Relations with China
Americans have been interested in China for a long time. In 1784, when the American War for Independence was barely over, the first ship to sail under an American flag left New York. It was the merchant ship Empress of China, bound for Canton (now Guangdong), China.
Backgrounder posted August 7, 2012
U.S. Asian Policy: America's Security Commitment to Asia Needs More Forces
Abstract: Since the 19th century, Asia has been—and will continue to be—a region of vital importance to the United States. And yet, even as the threats to stability in Asia multiply, there has not been a commensurate increase of U.S. capabilities. While the Obama Administration believes its “Asia Pivot” will animate U.S. policy toward Asia, the U.S. military lacks the…
Issue Brief posted August 2, 2012
South China Sea Tensions Reflect Danger of Defense Budget Cuts
In recent months, tensions have risen in the South China Sea as the ongoing territorial disputes between various Southeast Asian states and the People’s Republic of China have begun to boil. An April speech by Chinese Defense Minister Liang Guanglie stating that the South Sea Fleet would be the vanguard of major new missions makes recent developments even more ominous.…
Issue Brief posted July 26, 2012
China Buys Canadian Energy: Lessons for the U.S.
China National Offshore Oil Corporation (CNOOC) this week offered to buy Canada’s Nexen, Inc., for $15 billion. Nexen’s board is recommending the bid to shareholders. If completed, this would be the single largest acquisition that Chinese companies have made in the outward investment splurge that started in 2005. It raises a series of issues for American policymakers to…