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The United States is seeking to deter China from expansion while also attempting to integrate it into the global economy and global order. Even with Russia, the goal is not to force the collapse of the Russian regime (which would not be replaced by a pro-Western liberal democracy), but rather to deter Moscow's aggressive instincts and hope over time that it will evolve along a more cooperative line.
Imagine if the United States were to decide to combat China fully and frontally, building up its naval presence in the Pacific, creating new bases, and adopting a more aggressive and forceful attitude. China would surely respond in a variety of ways, military, political, and economic.
This would alarm almost all the countries in Asia – even the ones worried today about Beijing's assertiveness – because China is their largest trading partner and the key to their economic well-being. What they want from Washington is a kind of emergency insurance policy, not a new Cold War…
…The challenge for Washington, then, is not simple deterrence but deterrence and integration – a sophisticated, complicated task, but the right one.
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