Over the last two weeks, China and the United States moved dangerously close to the brink of war for the first time in almost two decades, but the annual security forum in Singapore saw the two sides adopt a less hawkish, while still firm, stance on disputes in the South China Sea.1 Comment
The Jeju Forum for Peace and Prosperity, held annually on the South Korean island of Jeju, dedicates itself to ideas such as diversity and sustainability. This year, the forum has the theme of building a "New Asia of Trust and Harmony."
Sino-American relations are poised to worsen despite another summit meeting between the two leaders being planned for September, with Xi Jinping having accepted Barak Obama's invitation of a state visit.
With barely eight months to go before Taiwan holds its next general election, at which both a new president and the entire parliament will be chosen, much hung in the balance as the chairman of the ruling Kuomintang (KMT), Eric Chu, met in Beijing last week with his Communist party counterpart, Xi Jinping, who is both party general secretary and state president.
Last week, on the eve of the annual ASEAN summit meeting, Beijing warned the 10-nation grouping to "refrain from entangling itself" in rows with China, which risked "win-win cooperation" with the emerging superpower.
The Hong Kong Government's political reform package, unveiled last week, contained few surprises. But there are some positive features.
For many years, as China grew stronger and more influential, the United States has been pressuring it to assume more global responsibilities. Ten years ago, a senior American official, Robert Zoellick, urged China to become a "responsible stakeholder," a term that perplexed the Chinese.
Beijing must be feeling the pressure from the United States to stop its campaign of turning tiny reefs that it controls in the South China Sea into artificial islands capable of accommodating military aircraft and vessels. The Monday edition of the People's Daily online carried not one but two commentaries criticizing the United States for its accusations against China.
In November 2012, two weeks after becoming leader of the Communist Party, Xi Jinping visited the National Museum in Tiananmen Square. There, after viewing a grand exhibition called "The Road to Revival," which recalls China's century of humiliation beginning with the Opium War of 1840, Xi issued a call for achieving the "Chinese Dream," or "the great revival of the Chinese nation."
its triumph over the United States in the launching of the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank, China is pushing ahead on another initiative which President Xi Jinping also introduced in 2013: The Silk Road Economic Belt and the 21st Century Maritime Silk Road, twin projects which are breathtaking in scope and which could potentially affect more than half the world's population.