Similar and different – an occasional reflection
As huge economies with large and diverse populations, occupying about the same land area at about the same range of latitudes, China and the US have many similarities. Similarities extend to many elements of culture and institutions, good and bad. The similarities are often surprising; the differences confuse us, but may be a source of new perspectives.
Domestic and foreign affairs in 2018 – Xi, CCP, DJT, GOP – Part 5 of 5
The Anarchic International System – destabilize the world
Xi and Trump are destabilizing the world, and not only because of the tariff conflict.
As John Mearsheimer reminds us, there is no supra-arbiter of conflict between states. Realism in international relations suggests that fundamental relations can only be based on domestic interests and an interpretation of what other states might do in their own interest. Political disagreements with other states - nominally power equals as independent countries – are difficult to address without a hegemonic leading country. There can only be balancing of interests. And there is no question that the world is looking at a rising China and declining US and wondering about great power conflicts and the Thucydides Trap and how hegemony will play out.