* Articles marked with an asterisk appear in the English summer edition of RDN. All other articles appear in French in the French edition.
Ambiguity and fragility of the new Chinese power
Éric de La Maisonneuve
The Chinese model of modern power raises many questions. How should economic power be translated politically both internally and externally? The author suggests that it is in all our interests for the Chinese model to enjoy peaceful success.
China and its strategic environment
The author coordinated the articles in this issue that summarises the situation in China in the summer of 2011. In his own article here, he offers a broad overview of the various contributions. The main feature to emerge from the analyses is the alarming power of this key nation, tempered by the contradictions of its current strategic personality, which has three dimensions: its global aspect whose scope is inhibited by its local vulnerability; its regional environment where mastery is assumed, albeit cautiously; and its contribution to the global scheme of things, inextricably linked to a premeditated ambiguity in all it does.
Chinese diplomacy in a changing world
This detailed round-up by a Chinese diplomat and analyst specialised in international studies, shows how Beijing views China’s own strategic structure today. The author explains how China is facing up to the challenges of the global crisis in a competitive regional environment and exposes the four pillars of Chinese diplomacy brought into play in order to reach the primary objectives of the country’s economic development.
China’s international relations: a pragmatic preference for an indirect approach *
In the author’s view, China is currently obsessed by a desire for recognition of its historic and strategic depth and is above all eager to safeguard its development. Its aim is to promote stability and security to enable the methodical implementation of a discrete yet ambitious regional and global policy of influence.
China and its ‘Go’ strategy *
Tanguy Struye de Swielande
How does China see itself in the world, and what strategies and tactics does it employ to strengthen its position on the international stage? This analysis is based on the nation’s strategic culture, and examines the long-term implementation of an all-encompassing strategy.
Happy days for the Chinese leadership
China is the great Asian nation, complex in nature, rooted in its soil, its culture and its people, powerful at the centre yet suspicious, even narrow-minded, in the south.
China and the environment: from the centre to its outer reaches; study of a phenomenon
How can one encourage and sustain economic development without compromising efforts to protect the environment? How can the dynamics of a forward-looking centralised administration be maintained without abandoning the fringes of a multi-faceted society? China must achieve long-term industrial and social development if solidarity and stability are to be sustained.
Taiwan: an additional Chinese economic partner
The author introduces us to another China, one that is growing fast and whose history has been closely linked with Japan and the Maoist revolution; an insular China, one of the Asian Dragons, which is investing in its mainland neighbour and which has recently initiated wide-ranging human and economic links with the continent.
China-Taiwan: a fragile detente
Taipei and Beijing are now linked via a policy of peaceful development. This convergence, acceptable to all Chinese, must surely be informed by the current economic situation and is clearly tactical in nature. It conceals basic differences and defiant military posturing on one hand, and economic defiance on the other, which leaves the US, as arbiter, some room for manoeuvre.
China and its defence
China is the second largest economic power in the world, yet the roles, structures and resources of the People’s Liberation Army are little known. The author offers a selection of key reference points to help us appreciate its current operational capabilities, which remain limited.
Development of the Chinese military machine
The Chinese Army, contrary to received opinion, has been evolving structurally and adapting to new technologies and doctrines in particular. It is far from the often-quoted formidable tool that challenges western military systems. It makes effective use of modern techniques to mark its territory, and aims to convince the world of its serious military intentions.
China and its alliance structure *
Can China forgo alliances as it treads the path from emergence to peaceful development? Is regional security cooperation sufficient for its purposes? How can it associate its neighbours with its interests and security? This article offers some suggestions from a specialist.
Redefining US-China relations: China’s perspective
Here is a detailed account of the three occasions that, in Beijing’s opinion, have defined bilateral relations between the United States and China over the last 30 years. It helps us to understand better the degree to which the Chinese side now feels betrayed, and to assess where the current wait-and-see and regulatory strategy that it seems to have adopted is leading it.
China now and in the future
The author is a specialist in China’s military society; after analysing its current political and economic situation he identifies essential indicators to help us understand the challenges facing the next congress which will be held in 2012. He also offers an in-depth view of the nature of the competition between China and the United States in the Asia-Pacific region.
Emergence, competition, confrontation and harmony
China is basing its economic development on a harmonious contradiction, with the aim of reconciling or even combining the advantages of its centralised political and social system with those afforded by a liberal economy. When applied to its regional strategy, this subtle approach is aimed at adding value to the very contradiction from which it is developed
Chinese soft power: from concept to reality
To expand its influence without damaging its image, China is following a restrained ‘soft power’ strategy alongside a policy intended to promote a harmonious society. While waiting for something better to come along, the aim of this overall posture is primarily to give it a foothold not only in Southeast Asia but also in the Middle East, South America and Africa.
China and the pendulum
Previous crises taught China the fundamental lessons that enabled it to react robustly to the latest one, and in doing so avoiding its economic consequences. The country has resumed its long march towards prosperity and regional development, and the West, particularly France, ought to respond to this prompt by seeking out paths of convergence and complementarity through a broad-ranging dialogue of equals with China.
China and us: towards enduring partnerships?
In this forthright expression of his opinion, the author warns us against ill-informed interpretation of Chinese modernisation when it is seen as a threat to the established powers. He recommends that more account be taken of its current entrepreneurial activism and that we should contribute to its development with no hidden agenda.
France and China
The Franco-Chinese relationship is based on profound friendships that have been established in many fields—political, economic, cultural and artistic. This broad spectrum of common interest continues to lead to new initiatives and new ambitions.