Four days after Russia invaded Ukraine, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi arrived announced which his country was willing to work with the United States on President BidenJoe BidenGas prices hit a new record of 0.43 per gallon, an increase of 79 cents in two weeks Five important developments in Russia’s invasion of Ukraine Biden’s CIA chief is leading the charge against Putin’s information war MORE‘s Build Back Better World Partnership. At the same time, he said China would welcome US participation in their Belt & Road program.
Both of these initiatives seek to strengthen the world’s infrastructure, and both are designed to gain international favor at the expense of the other country. Thus, if the United States and China were to join forces now, it would represent a fundamental shift – one that could benefit millions suffering from a lack of infrastructure.
Perhaps Russia’s aggression against Ukraine prompted China to take this conciliatory step. Or maybe it was simply a misleading trick. Whatever the underlying cause, the United States should tentatively say “yes” to the Chinese proposal and enter into negotiations. Working together to improve the global infrastructure would represent a small but significant step away from a growing adversarial relationship. And that would clearly be in the national interest of the United States.
“Especially now that Russia is replacing China as the United States’ most important international enemy, the United States would be wise to act to counter the newly proclaimed China-Russia.”no limitsPartnership. Both strategically and practically, the United States will be under heavy pressure to confront both Russia and China at the same time. As Henry Kissinger and Richard Nixon demonstrated 50 years ago, it can create a good policy to strike a wedge between these two countries.
At the same time, America should not ignore China’s persecution of its Uighur minority or its other deplorable practices and policies. Yet these negative aspects do not have to be the only defining of the relationship.
The United States and China share interests in issues other than infrastructure, and when they do, there is little reason for them to oppose each other. To reduce the dangers of climate change, for example, there is a desperate need for Sino-US cooperation despite deep disagreement on other issues. Yes, John Kerry
For those who believe that Chinese records on human rights would preclude such cooperation, it should be noted that even during the high years of the Cold War, the United States and the former Soviet Union worked together in areas that were relatively uncontroversial. For example, American astronauts and Soviet cosmonauts met in the room; the two countries established crisis control mechanisms to reduce the risk of nuclear war; and in 1972 they signed one Events at sea agreement to prevent collisions between warships. The fact that the Soviet government at that time had a terrible history of human rights did not prevent active cooperation in areas of common interest.
Such an approach would require the United States and China, where possible, to focus on what unites them, not on what separates them. It would not require giving up strong positions or compromising basic principles. This will mean trying to enter into agreements that are mutually beneficial. Not only would joint action of this kind have an important impact in itself, but it would also serve to drain the poison from the great strife. The core idea is that instead of facing each other as the enemy, the two countries will stand together, take shared issues and work together to solve problems.
An advocate of this kind of strategy between the United States and the Soviet Union was none other than Ronald Reagan, who in 1983 called the Soviet Union “The evil empire“Two years later, Reagan sought a common ground with Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev in Geneva.
As Gorbachev later told one American television audience, “President Reagan suddenly said to me, ‘What would you do if the United States were attacked by someone from outer space? Would you help us?’ I said, ‘No doubt about it.’ ”
Today, the world is in serious danger – if not men from Mars. Displacement of adversarial conditions in directions of cooperation offers a possible resort.
John Marks was the founder and longtime president of Search for Common Ground, an international organization involved in peacebuilding. He is currently the CEO of Confluence Internationala peace-building group located in Amsterdam.