Richard C. Bush is a senior fellow in Foreign Policy Studies at the Brookings Institution and director of its Center for Northeast Asian Policy Studies. He has worked on China and Taiwan issues his entire professional career: at the Asia Society, on the House International Relations Committee, on the National Intelligence Council, and at the American Institute in Taiwan, where he served as chairman and managing director from 1997 to 2002.
In this eagerly awaited book, China expert Harry Harding offers the first comprehensive look at Sino-American relations from 1972 to the present. He traces the evolution of U.S.-China relations, and assesses American policy toward Peking in the post- Tiananmen era.
Harding analyzes the changing contexts for the Sino-American relationship, particularly the rapidly evolving international environment, changes in American economic and political life, and the dramatic domestic developments in both China and Taiwan. He discusses the principal substantive issues in U.S.-China relations, including the way in which the two countries have addressed their differences over Taiwan and human rights, and how they have approached the blend of common and competitive interests in their economic and strategic relationships. He also addresses the shifting political base for Sino-American relations within each country, including the development of each society's perceptions of the other, and the emergence and dissolution of rival political coalitions supporting and opposing the relationship.
Harding concludes that a return to the Sino-American strategic alignment of the 1970s, or even to the economic partnership of the 1980s, is less likely in the 1990s than continued tension or even confrontation over such issues as trade, human rights, and the proliferation of advanced weapons. But he also explains the importance of maintaining normal working relations with China in order to promote security in East Asia, protect the global environment, and encourage an open, more realistic and stable relationship with China.
Selected by Choice as an Outstanding Book of 1992
Award winner for excellence in publishing from the Association of American Publishers
The waters of the Strait are uncharted, and each side worries about shoals beneath the surface. The current engagement between Beijing and Taipei may make possible a solution to their six-decade-long dispute. Whether, when, and how that might happen is, however, shrouded in doubt. China fears the island's permanent separation, by way of either an overt move to de jure independence or continued refusal to unify with the mainland. Taiwan fears subordination to an authoritarian regime that does not have Taipei's interests at heart. And the United States worries about the stability of the East Asian region.
Richard Bush, who studied issues surrounding Taiwan during almost twenty years in the U.S. government, explains the current state of relations between China and Taiwan, providing the details of what led to the current situation. And he extrapolates on the likely future of cross-Strait relations. Bush also discusses America's stake, analyzing possible ramifications for U.S. interests in the critically important East Asia region and recommends steps to protect those interests.
"At the heart of the [Taiwan conundrum] is a question of definition. Does the dispute stem from the protracted division of the Chinese state after World War II, or does the Republic of China on Taiwan in some sense constitute a successor state of the old Republic of China (ROC), one on a par with the People's Republic of China on the Chinese mainland? Whether and how the unification of the two entities might occur hinges on the answer. Indeed, I have argued that the core of the dispute between the two sides has been their disagreement over whether the Republic of China—or Taiwan—is a sovereign entity for purposes of cross-Strait relations. It follows that if unification is a real option, the two sides must form a political union that bridges the disagreement over the island's legal status. Is that possible?"—from the Introduction
This book explains succinctly the impetus, the methods and the consequences if China is to use force, a prospect that has become greater following the return of President Chen Shui-bian to power in Taiwan for a second term in 2004.
If China Attacks Taiwan shows how in reality there can be no real winner in such an eventuality and how the consequences would be dire not just for Taiwan and China, but East Asia as a whole. Whether China will use force depends ultimately on how its policy making apparatus assess potential US intervention, whether its armed forces can subdue Taiwan and counter US military involvement, as well as on its assessment of the likely consequences. Given the extremely high probability of American involvement this volume appeals to not only scholars and students working on China, its foreign policy and the security and prosperity of East Asia, but also to policy makers and journalists interested in China’s rise and its defense policy, Taiwan’s security and development, regional stability as well as US policy toward China and the East Asia region generally. This book is essential for understanding China’s efforts to achieve a ‘peaceful rise’, which requires it to transform itself into a global power not by the actual use of force but by diplomacy backed up by rapidly expanding military power.
This book is an excellent resource for all students and scholars of military and security studies, Asian (China/Taiwan) studies and international relations
Richard Bush focuses his on the problematic East China Sea region. Although Japan's military capabilities are more considerable than some in the West realize, its defense budget has remained basically flat in recent years. Meanwhile, Chinese military expenditures have grown by double digits annually. Moreover, that the emphasis of China's military modernization is on power projection—the ability of its air and naval forces to stretch their reach to the east, thus encroaching on its island neighbor.
Tokyo regards the growth of Chinese power and its focus on the East China Sea with deep anxiety. How should they respond? The balance of power is changing, and Japan must account for that uncomfortable fact in crafting its strategy. It is incumbent on China, Japan, and the United States to take steps to reduce the odds of clash and conflict in the East China Sea, and veteran Asia analyst Bush presents recommendations to that end. The steps he suggests won't be easy, and effective political leadership will be absolutely critical. If implemented fully and correctly, however, they have the potential of reducing the perils of proximity in Asia.
Bates Gill has completely updated his original analysis, focusing on Chinese policy in three areas: regional security mechanisms, nonproliferation and arms control, and questions of sovereignty and intervention. Looking to the future, he offers specific recommendations for a balanced and realistic approach that emphasizes what China and the United States have in common, rather than what divides them. The main arguments and recommendations of the original book continue to hold true and, in many respects, are more compelling now than ever before given China's continued ascendancy.