Last week, The New York Times reported that the U.S. had secretly stepped up cyber attacks against North Korea’s missile program during President Barack Obama’s second term. The move toward using cyber weapons marks an important shift in policy—one that comes with plenty of risks and challenges.
Under President Donald Trump, the U.S. appears to be distancing itself from its role as leader of the global system. Many excitable pundits and even sober diplomats have speculated that China could fill the resulting vacuum. Yet China might not want to depose the U.S. at the apex of the multilateral system.