Discussing Biden's Potential China Policy


hullopilllw

Junior Member
Registered Member
The easiest way for American collapse is to make Tom Cotton president.

Even money on whether collapse comes through civil war (you know that sh*thead is going to try and repeal the 14th Amendment, and likely other Amendments) or his gross incompetence and stupidity causes a catastrophic military defeat.

Still the same tactic which assume China is an idiot :

China must open up and buy whatever the US allow her to. Free Market !

China cannot buy advanced part which help her advance up the chain ladder. Justified to safeguard her leadership in tech field.
 

j17wang

Junior Member
Registered Member
A Cotton/Pompeo 2024 would ensure WWIII
China better get the AI deadhand ready with 10000 nukes

There will be zero chance of WWIII under election of Cotton/Pompeo. Cotton wanted to "send in the troops" against the BLM demonstrators. I am sure he WANTS to fight a battle of annihilation against China, but within days of his election he would be facing unprecedented civilian revolution across multiple states and hundreds of cities. Not to mention burning US embassies around the world.
 

AndrewS

Major
Registered Member
There will be zero chance of WWIII under election of Cotton/Pompeo. Cotton wanted to "send in the troops" against the BLM demonstrators. I am sure he WANTS to fight a battle of annihilation against China, but within days of his election he would be facing unprecedented civilian revolution across multiple states and hundreds of cities. Not to mention burning US embassies around the world.
This is very unlikely to happen.
 

Hendrik_2000

Brigadier
An excellent analysis by ZZabur I think he is a Finn professor in either Engineering or Physiscs jus guess and has a chance to teach in China So he is very fair and perceptive of China situation in relation to the west Being a nordic he is somewhat detach. His reasoning her why containment will fail you hear that Gadget tool


In order to better understand this question, it is perhaps necessary to discuss in more detail all options Americans have here.

For a sake of argument, suppose that the American president has god-like powers, i.e., everything he tries always succeeds to maximum plausible extent. Let's see what Americans, under this kind of ideal conditions could do and what they could not in "containing China".

My list is the following:

(0) Absolute containment: In the ideal conditions, China would become another "puppet state" whiting the American sphere of influence like, say, Canada or Australia. It would adopt American political system and align its interests with American ones while quietly giving a priority to ones of the master. But would this really work? I think it would not.

The first problem here is that if you want to contain something, you need to have a container that is bigger (by an order of magnitude, or so) than what you want to contain. And here is the problem; no matter how you count it, China is always >10% of the planet. It cannot be contained even if the whole planet united for this sole purpose.

So, why is this? What happens if you try to put something as big as China into the "American sphere of influence"? It basically stops to be the American sphere of influence, instead becoming a Sino-American sphere of influence. Even in absence of political disputes, this will happen with respect of things like economy and cultural products. Inevitably, Chinese companies would start to dominate some important industries. They would start to push cultural influences that Americans would see as alien and would be unwilling to embraceThese would inevitably lead to disputes (notably, disputes like this emerged in the Japan-US relations in 1980s, but they did not develop into a fully bloomed conflict, because Japan went into decline soon after that.

At some point, even a fully "Americanised" version of China would start to ask for some role in the decision making. This was the main the problem that started the still-continuing slow-motion conflict in Europe-USA relations towards the end of 1990s (Freedom fries, anyone?). This conflict did not bloom either because of internal divisions in Europe, but it continues to exist. The same dynamics was also the core reason behind the Sino-Soviet split in 1960s.

Conclusion: There cannot be two tigers in the same mountain. If something as big as China is integrated into an existing sphere of influence, it begins to change it in a manner Americans cannot accept. Notably, for similar reasons, India (supposing that at some point it will become a reasonably rich/advanced/powerful country) cannot be included either.

(1) Technological containment: If Americans cannot possibly turn China into a harmless puppet state, then perhaps they could "keep" it backward and isolated like, say, Iran and North Korea? No, this appears not to be possible any more. It perhaps was remotely possible in 1990s, but even back then it would have required much more than the Americans would have been willing to do. The problem here is that (from personal experience I can say) doing science and high technology is not that hard. All it needs is time and money. With sustained investment, aided by espionage, etc., anyone can develop technology.

Scientists and engineers can be trained by any country, and they can also be employed from abroad. When compared to the total expense of doing science, salaries are not the biggest factor. So, even a hugely successful containment project will inevitably fail, as long as the competitor being contained is able to outspend the container. So it's basically all about economy.

North Koreans are backward, not because they are not able to do high technology for some inherent political/cultural/etc. reasons, but because they are starting from a very low level and they lack resources that they could invest into this endeavour.

Conclusion: This is definitely not going to work.

(2) Economic containment: Ok, if economic containment is basically a premise (but not a guarantee) of successful technological containment, could they do it? Anyone who has been reading China-related commentary in social media knows that after 2-3 comments there always appears some genius to explain that Chinese economic success is just a result of "unpatriotic" Americans investing into China and buying their stuff; should this kind of "foolishness" end, then all jobs and money will miraculously transfer "back" to America, and the Chinese "economic bubble" will burst in a week.

However, this view is not even remotely based on reality. Actually, the economy is highly dependent on two factors:
* markets: ability to sell the end product;
* capacity to produce things effectively.

In 1990s and before that the USA was the dominant consumer market in the world. By controlling access to this market, they were able to grant or deny the key ingredient of economic success to anyone they preferred. But this has actually changed. The Chinese internal market is now huge; it is able to independently sustain significant economic growth, and it is a key market that nobody in the world can afford to ignore. So it's very complicated now, anyone who is trying to contain China economically is going to face a significant associated cost. This makes it even more difficult to set up a coalition to do the containment; all the time there is going to be somebody who is willing to silently "break the rules" for financial benefits. Notably, even Carter's grain embargo against the USSR in 1979 was a failure; it was immediately given up by Reagan because it damaged the US more than the USSR.

The same is true for industrial production. Chinese success is not about "cheap labor" anymore, but about economics of scale, unrivalled industrial base and production ecosystem. Moving factories from China looks like a no-brainer but with exception of very low-end production, it is not cheap or easy to do, and it is likely to result a loss of competitive advantage.

Conclusion: This is definitely not going to work.

(3) Military containment: Another idea could be to build a containing "wall" of military bases and like-minded nations around China. This would not perhaps prevent the rise of China, but it would at least give an option to cut it from the outside world and prevent it from expanding its sphere of influence outside its borders.

Unlike 0-2, this is actually something that has (in view of historical examples) sometimes worked reasonably well, even against big powers. But the problem here is the geography. China is, in principle, surrounded by number of big and medium sized countries that could play a role in such containment, but in practice, it would be very hard for them to contribute anything. Out of big countries, Japan does not have land border with China and India's land border consists of Himalayan wasteland that is almost impossible to use as a gateway for invasion. Out of medium sized countries, South Korea and Vietnam are too exposed; both of these would be completely devastated in any military conflict with China, which means that they are unlikely to participate such effort. The same is true for Taiwan that is fully exposed to Chinese attacks because of its lack of strategic depth. The most smaller neighbours and poor and backward. The only exceptions are Russia and Kazakhstan that could (from a geographic point of view) play a meaningful role in containing China if they wanted, but they don't have much reason to do so. Countries like Indonesia have significant potential to contribute, but they are so far that their effect would be limited.

Conclusion: Forming a NATO-style containment ring around China is theoretically possible but it requires participation of Russia that is not an American friend, as well as that of several countries that do not have real motive/incentive to do so. The countries/regions that are potentially exposed to Chinese "aggression" like Taiwan and Vietnam are actually so exposed that they would be more liabilities than assets in an actual conflict.

(4) Political containment: Perhaps it would be possible to limit Chinese influence by making it "illegal", i.e., excluding China from international organisations, etc., elements of the "rules based" world order? As I see it, this is not particularly plausible either. The recent Anglo-American attempt to use WHO against China is a good example. The problem here is that any "global" organisation necessarily needs to work with a country as big as China in order to make it even remotely credible. And despite talk in "Western" media, China is not alone; it has many de facto allies among non-Western countries that tend to support its positions.

Because American allies tend to be more wealthy and developed than Chinese allies, the strategy is slightly more plausible with respect of the economic/technological world order, but the problem here is that even if China is left out, it still needs to be accommodated into the order in a way or another because of its economic weight and the fact that many important high technology products are almost exclusively produced in China.

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Conclusion: Containing China at the moment is a fools errand. It's not going to work, no matter what happens. It is either completely unworkable or where it is possible, it costs way more than what is its value. Americans should understand that in 2021, China is a superpower with global reach even without sending aircraft carriers to every ocean.
 

Phead128

Junior Member
I am happy to say that when I checked "Superpower" wikipedia page in 2007 and 2011 and 2016, China was not listed a superpower.

NOW in 2021, China is FINALLY acknowledged as the second emerging superpower on Wikipedia. Truly we are living through history at the moment. Took a decade after eclipsing Japan, and despite not having even eclipsed US yet in GDP. People just know, it's inevitable. China is a mega powerhouse nation
 

steel21

Junior Member
Registered Member
I am happy to say that when I checked "Superpower" wikipedia page in 2007 and 2011 and 2016, China was not listed a superpower.

NOW in 2021, China is FINALLY acknowledged as the second emerging superpower on Wikipedia. Truly we are living through history at the moment. Took a decade after eclipsing Japan, and despite not having even eclipsed US yet in GDP. People just know, it's inevitable. China is a mega powerhouse nation
Yea, but if there was a page for Supa-Dupa Power, there will be on only country; India!
 

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