The rise and fall of China’s ‘Peaceful Rise’: Implications for US-China geopolitical competition in the Indo-Pacific
North South University, Dhaka, Bangladesh
Data publikacji: 26-07-2023
Stosunki Międzynarodowe – International Relations 2021;57:159-179
Strategic competition and rivalry between the United States and China has become a paradigm of international relations in the past decade. Central to this growing strategic distrust between Washington and Beijing is the tug of war between the US-led Indo-Pacific strategy and China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). However, the role of China’s ‘peaceful rise/peaceful development’ strategy and assertive nationalism characteristic of Chinese foreign policymaking in creating an atmosphere of tension and misunderstanding between Beijing and Washington have been largely overlooked. This paper, therefore, seeks to understand the relationship between the rise and fall of China’s ‘peaceful rise/peaceful development’ concept, the emerging prominence of assertive nationalism in China’s foreign policy making and a deteriorating US-China relations with deepening strategic mistrust between the two major powers through a comparative-historical analysis of China’s BRI and the US-led Indo-Pacific strategy. Rather than demonstrating China’s commitment to its ‘peaceful rise/peaceful development’ to the world, this paper argues that Beijing’s offensive to defend China’s national interests in a confrontational manner is an indication that an increasingly confident Chinese leadership no longer feels the need for reassuring the world that China's ‘rise’ is peaceful and non-threatening in nature. This could embolden Beijing to defy (if not explicitly challenge) the ‘rules-based international order’ upheld/defended by Washington, thereby spelling the end of China’s ‘peaceful rise/peaceful development’ strategy.
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