Negotiators from the P5+1 countries and Iran failed to reach a breakthrough in Istanbul last week at thelatest round of talks over Iran’s nuclear program. Nevertheless, it seems that, once again, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad wants to keep negotiations alive with his seemingly never-ending bazaar-style haggling. The reason is simple: Ahmadinejad’s administration requires a positive outcome, at least on paper, so that the U.S., its European allies and the United Nations Security Council lift the debilitating economic sanctions targeting the Islamic Republic. So despite last week’s stalemate, the latest of many, Ahmadinejad is dangling the carrot of compromise to lure […]
A trial involving the son of a minor official accused in a hit an run accident in central China has attracted national attention, according to this Al Jazeera report. The trial sparked public outrage and an internet campaign calling for justice when the accused son brushed off the incident, telling authorities that his father was an official in the government.
In the background of Chinese President Hu Jintao’s recent visit to the United States was the specter of increased military tensions between China and the U.S. Chinese military capabilities appear to be growing rapidly, with systems like the J-20 stealth fighter and the DF-21 anti-ship ballistic missile threatening key U.S. assets. However, the summit between Hu and President Barack Obama focused more on economic than military issues. And one of the foremost trade problems discussed during the visit was the issue of intellectual property (IP). The United States has consistently criticized China for laxness in IP regulation, complaining that Chinese […]
As a fundamental part of what I consider to be my parental duties, I’ve been broadening my son’s already healthy exposure to kung fu movies over the past few months. And I’m repeatedly struck by how many insights they offer into the formative folklore that animates modern-day China. Like Westerns for America, they are heavy in caricatures and historic inaccuracies. But they also reflect, at times crudely and at others quite elegantly, Chinese culture’s self-image and its view of the “other.” So as much as I found last week’s bilateral summit between Presidents Barack Obama and Hu Jintao dramatically overblown […]
Presidents Barack Obama and Hu Jintao held a joint press conference on Jan. 19, 2011. The first question from the press, on the issue of human rights, comes at 16:45 in the video. Both Hu and Obama commented on a wide variety of issues, including human rights. “China recognizes and also respects the universality of human rights,” said President Hu. “At the same time, we do believe that we also need to take into account the different and national circumstances when it comes to the universal value of human rights.”
Military bands and a 21-gun salute were part of the welcome for China’s President Hu Jintao during the first White House state visit by a Chinese leader in 13 years. U.S. President Barack Obama, however, wasted little time touching on the sensitive subject of human rights in China.
TAIPEI, Taiwan — Six months after the hotly contested signing of a controversial cross-strait trade pact, Taiwan may be beginning to accept talks with China as business as usual. Only a few dozen desultory protesters could be seen waving signs around in the bitter winter air in Taipei during the latest round of cross-strait negotiations last month. Police officers assigned to preserve the peace appeared more relaxed than during past talks, perhaps confident they wouldn’t need to exert themselves pulling apart mobs around Chinese envoy Chen Yunlin’s hotel. Flash back to June 2010, in the sweltering last few weeks leading […]
JODHPUR, India — In China, one often hears that it is impossible to govern a population of more than a billion using democracy. The country’s phenomenal rise over the past 30 years certainly testifies to the success of its “Leninist corporatism.” However, while concerns mount over the sustainability and fairness of this model, India’s greater tolerance and openness may become a source of considerable comparative advantage in the quest for regional leadership in the “Asian Century.” The fundamental differences in the two emerging behemoths’ social and political attitudes are reflected in their respective approaches to the past. In China, the […]
President Barack Obama came into office promising a new sort of bilateral relationship with China. It was not meant to be. Washington hasn’t changed any of its long list of demands regarding China, and Beijing, true to historical form, has gone out of its way to flex its muscles as a rising power. With the recent series of revelations concerning Chinese military developments, the inside-the-Beltway hyping of the Chinese threat has reached fever pitch, matching the average American’s growing fears of China’s economic strength. Of course, the world’s established No. 1 power always greets the challenge from a rising No. […]
In pursuit of Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu’s concept of strategic depth, Turkey has been reaching out to rising powers in Asia while at the same time offering itself as a mediator in disputes in its near abroad. As part of this approach, Turkey is leveraging its longstanding ties with Pakistan and its stature as one of the few industrialized countries in the Muslim world to create a diplomatic role for itself in Afghanistan. But in a sign that Ankara’s geopolitical outreach cannot transcend regional fault lines, Turkey kept India out of the January 2010 tripartite summit on Afghanistan at Pakistan’s […]
China has confirmed that it has conducted a successful flight test of a new stealth fighter jet. The news was announced while U.S. Secretary of Defense Robert Gates is on an official visit to the China. Chinese President Hu Jintao stated the tests were pre-planned and the timing was a coincidence.
As the 11th National Congress of the Communist Party of Vietnam (CPV) opens in Hanoi on Jan. 12, the country is at a crossroads in terms of its future development trajectory and, possibly, its international posture. During the nine-day gathering, the congress is to discuss, revise and approve the document that sets the guidelines for Vietnam’s 2011-2020 national socio-economic development strategy as well as the CPV Central Committee’s political report. In addition, the nearly 1,400 delegates, representing more than 3.6 million party members in 54,000 grassroots organizations, will elect the new Central Committee. The 160 full members and 21 candidates […]
A central theme of Barack Obama’s 2008 presidential campaign was the need to revitalize the institutions of governance for 21st-century problems. “We cannot meet 21st-century challenges with a 20th-century bureaucracy,” he declared in one notable stump speech, and the sentiment was repeated throughout his campaign. Once in office, President Obama made the same claim regarding international order and governance. The 2010 National Security Strategy (NSS) (.pdf) acknowledged that in a world facing transnational threats, and one where “new centers of influence” would shape diplomatic options, international cooperation was a necessity. But it recognized that outdated institutions are as much an […]
The Brazilian aerospace conglomerate Embraer recently signed a deal with China’s state-owned AVIC International Leasing to finance the sale of $1.5 billion worth of aircraft over the next five years. In an e-mail interview, Daniel Vertesy, Ph.D. fellow in the Innovation Studies and Development program at UNU-MERIT, discussed Brazil’s aerospace sector. WPR: What is the current state of Brazil’s aerospace sector? Daniel Vertesy: The aerospace industry is once again growing in Brazil. Over the past three decades, Brazil has secured a place among the top 10 global producers, owing to the regional-scale aircraft-maker, Embraer. The financial crisis hit the sector […]
U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates unveiled his much-anticipated budget cuts last Thursday, signaling the beginning of the end of the decade-long splurge in military spending triggered by Sept. 11. Gates presented the package of cuts as being the biggest possible given the current international security landscape, warning that any deeper reductions could prove “potentially calamitous.” Frankly, I find that statement hard to swallow. How can America basically match the rest of the world’s defense spending combined, and then describe anything less as “potentially calamitous”? Clearly, given the “nation’s grim financial outlook,” as Gates himself put it, we’re going to have […]
John Mearsheimer’s National Interest piece titled, “Imperial by Design,” has been getting a bit of attention, although less than I assumed it would judging from the attractiveness of its thesis in war-weary times. Although I agree in principle with the prescription, I found the diagnosis poorly argued. Mearsheimer declares that the U.S. has pursued a grand strategy of global dominance since the end of the Cold War, culminating in the Bush administration’s decision to remake the Middle East in its own image. He argues instead for a strategy of offshore balancing intended to economize American power and resources without abandoning […]
2010 began with disappointment over the Copenhagen climate change summit, only to end on a note of guarded optimism over the success — or lack of failure — in Cancun. Meanwhile, changing climate patterns have opened up new areas to mineral extraction, while exacerbating existing tensions over water. All of these developments take place against the backdrop of increasing global competition for mineral resources and rare earth elements. In this special report, World Politics Review considers climate change and resource competition through articles published in 2010. Below are links to each article in this special report, which subscribers can read […]