Monday, 2 April 2012
Sunday, 1 April 2012
The US government said that although it welcomes China’s peaceful rise, with China’s new pre-eminence in the world comes new responsibilities.
Friday, 30 March 2012
RT, formerly known as Russia Today, is a government-funded global news network based in Russia, and has news outlets all over the world including America, Britain and France. It was set up to provide an unbiased portrait of Russia, and the same can be seen amongst the other countries in which they have news outlets. The clip I found is from 2010 and discusses the military relations between China and America with Professor Michel Chossudovsky, who according to westernstandard.ca is one of Canada’s “nuttiest professors”, so some his comments should be taken in context.
The opening introduction to the segment highlights the relationship between China and America, comparing it to that of a relationship between brothers. The presenter opens with: “Remember that kid brother of yours that you always used to beat up?” This opening shows that America used to be the dominant country, as seen in the Cold War, their advancement of technology and their military might, and that they used to have the power to control countries. The presenter then goes on to say: “Then all of a sudden that kid brother hit a growth spurt and developed a longer reach so daily doses of knuckle sandwiches had to stop”, implying that America’s dominance was threatened because China developed as an NIC, developed their own nuclear weapons during the Cold War, and grew in terms of their technology and military power. The presenter ends with: “And as much as you wanted to cave it in his face, at times, you knew he was still your brother”, this being the epitome of the relationship between China and America today because America is reliant on China for financial support as well as industry (in terms of making toys and gadgets like iPods) and trade.
Chossudovsky claims that there are tensions between China and America that have been around for at least ten years and that China has been threatened since at least 1999 through a geo-political agenda, as opposed to the claim that tensions between China and America have recently started. This shows that neither nation wanted the world to know about their frictions. It could also be argued that America did not want to appear to have lost control of China, as it would have shown that America’s power in the world was declining, especially since the 9/11 attacks seemed to prove this. However, Chossudovsky has been criticized for his “wild-eyed theories”, so his claim that tensions have been there since 1999 could be doubted.
Michel Chossudovsky also claims that China has been threatened by America because of the Iran Sanctions Washington proposed that China did not want to go along with; stating that the regime was based on “double standards, fake data, and the presumption that Iran is a threat to global security”. This shows that the reasons behind the tensions between China and America are because of other countries, not necessarily between each other. Chossudovsky claims that China is threatened if Iran is threatened because they have agreements with each other, as well as China also having agreements with Russia; implying that America could be nervous about China’s relations with other countries and how it might affect it [America] in the future. Somewhat ironically, the Sino-Soviet Pact of the 1950’s did not work out, so it is interesting that China and Russia have relations with each other. In addition, the relationship between Russia and China was described as one of brothers, so again it is also interesting that the presenter at the beginning of the clip described China and America as brothers.
When asked how the Chinese are being threatened, Chossudovsky says that their diplomacy is polite and not an obvious or verbal threatened. Instead, America has set up military bases around the country as well as supporting insurgencies within the Chinese territory. He claims that from a strategic military perspective, China is considered a threat to America, despite officials like Premier Wen Jiabao stating that tensions are easing. This links back to Chossudovsky’s claims that tensions have been around for at least a decade, because it shows that the nations are putting on a positive portrayal of relations, or as Chossudovsky puts it “a gilded surface”, in spite of the supposed covert techniques for America to try and gain power of China. Chossudovsky believes that the fundamental issue is for the Obama administration to take a step back in military strategy in relation to China, in order for tensions between the two nations to properly cool. However, Chossudovsky fails to mention other ways in which tension would still remain, for example in terms of the economy.
The web item I have chosen to analyse in reference to American-Chinese relations is http://www.voanews.com/english/news/asia/Politics-Complicate-China-US-Relations-137269073.html.This article focuses primarily on the political side of the America-Chinese relations, and identifies this area as the main cause of conflict and disagreement between the two rival nations. This is evident as early as the title, which reads 'Politics Complicates China-US Relations'. The article is not completely one dimensional however. Within the area of Politics, the writer explores the complexities of the international relation in question. She talks about how, within the political conflict, areas such as finance and society are also analysed and explored. This is significant as it shows the depth of the issues surrounding the conflict.
One of the main focuses of Stephanie Ho is the issue of the potential change in power which might take place for both countries. She reveals her anxiousness regarding the possible election of Republican candidate Mitt Romney. His words regarding the American-Chinese relations state that “On day one, I will file, or I will, through an executive order, label China as a currency manipulator allowing us to put tariffs on Chinese goods that are coming into our country and killing American jobs in an unfair way”. This shows how, in the eyes of Ho, the situation is at danger of becoming worse as a result of new, Republican leadership. The fact that, earlier in the article, Ho identifies the problems with the way Obama leads in relation to the American relationship with China shows the extent of caution and worry that is being caused.
The words of Mitt Romney which have been used by Ho also link closely to the economy, which is something she identifies as important in this subject when she comments, 'Another area of friction between the two countries involves economic issues, and American political candidates have found that China bashing can win voter support'. This explains that, although economic issues do exist between the two countries, particularly in relation to the manufacturing and selling of new technological products, the political representation of these issues in America is the biggest problem. This shows how, in the eyes of Ho, the primary cause of American-Chinese conflict is the way Politics fabricates and over-emphasises problems that stem socially and economically.
Despite many of the ideas that are being expressed here seem sensible and understandable, we must take into consideration the fact that Stephanie Ho is, herself, Chinese. And although the overall publication is entitled 'Voice of America', it has been written by someone in Beijing. Through this we can't help but think that an element of bias is being exercised, in the same way that if an article with the same name was being written by an American journalist in New York, we would have to question its reliability. In summary, however, it is clear that there is a distinct conflict between China and America; an issue stemming from two nations constantly trying to better each other economically and politically. This is particularly identifiable with America, a nation which thrives on conflict and is determined to be the most powerful nation in the world. Judging from this article, and others of its kind, it is clear that the American-Chinese problem is only going to get worse.