It seems as though extremes have been taken when dealing with China. First too soft a stance and now too much iron fist. Because there will probably never be an ideal way to deal with China, a medium needs to be reached or relations may be damaged beyond repair.
If a cold war were to start all over again, the United States and China have earned the seats for participation. Tension continues to mount between the two countries over such events as the collision of a U.S. spy plane and a Chinese jet and the declaration by President Bush to defend Taiwan if China should attack them.
The latter of situations is a situation that both sides want to avoid at all costs. China knows that if it decides to invade Taiwan, it might as well wave a red flag at the United States. On the flipside, the U.S. does not want to jump into a war with China because of the understood repercussions of such a decision.
Diplomatic relations between the countries have also suffered as of late, spurred in part when President Bush unveiled his missile-defense plans. The Los Angeles Times reports that China Daily newspaper printed that “The United States is apparently attempting to seek absolute military supremacy and even greater global hegemony.”
Hindering relations between the two countries is that the Bush administration has taken a different approach to dealing with China than did the Clinton administration. Clinton’s approach was very relaxed and at times it seemed as if China was being catered to in excess. There are allegations about Clinton accepting campaign contributions from China and the release of intelligence secrets to the Chinese.
On the other hand, President Bush has made clear that the United States will not sit by and watch China pull stunts like detaining the crewmen of the spy plane. In this situation, he showed that he was not willing to negotiate.
Americans should be aware of the events that are unfolding between their homeland and China because the events will ultimately affect them. After all, the United States enjoys a large trade market with China, which could ultimately be affected if relations are allowed to escalate to a full-blown cold war.