At The American Conservative, Cato Institute senior fellow, Doug Bandow explains that treating China like an enemy risks turning the country into one. He suggests that rather than antagonize China, America should work to ensure a free future for its people. He writes:
The PRC is likely to pose a major challenge to America. But Beijing’s future is not guaranteed: it may grow old before it grows rich, Xi may be on the summit and at the edge of the precipice simultaneously, and the Chinese Communist Party may succumb to a range of debilitating domestic challenges before it turns China into a superpower. Despite the messiness of our democracy, American remains resilient, flexible, and legitimate.
That allows Washington to be patient in dealing with the PRC. Treating China as an enemy risks turning it into one. Moreover, Beijing currently lacks the ideological ambitions and military capabilities of the Soviet Union; America is not engaged in a similarly long struggle with evil. The 21st century will turn out much better if the U.S. and China are able, on balance, to maintain a cooperative rather than a confrontational relationship.
Modern China is a great success: hundreds of millions of people have moved out of poverty and live freer, more fulfilling lives. However, the PRC’s development remains incomplete and is moving in disturbing directions. America should work to ensure that China’s future is prosperous, liberal, and, most important, peaceful.
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