29 September 2015
The Rand Corporation recently released a report, The US-China Military Scorecard. The report assessed US and Chinese military capabilities in the context of two scenarios at different distances from China, one centered on Taiwan, and the other on the Nansha Islands. According to the report, over the past two decades, the PLA has transformed itself into a capable, modern military. In the 1990s, US strengths were evident, but now China enjoys an advantage in most plausible Asian conflict scenarios and US operational advantages in more distant scenarios are being undermined. Global Times reporter Chen Chenchen interviewed the lead author of the Rand report and experts from China and its neighboring countries to provide perspectives on China’s rising military power and consequent geopolitical effects.
… Ei Sun Oh, a senior fellow with the S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies, Nanyang Technological University
I think despite the latest findings by the Rand report that the gap between the US and China in terms of military capability is narrowing, both countries should not fixate themselves too much on comparing the relative military strength.
This is no more a world whereby we are experiencing Cold War. This is instead a world where we are experiencing acute economic slowdown.
China, as the world’s largest economic locomotive, if not the world’s largest economic power, should continue to focus on harnessing its national will in developing both its own as well as the world’s economy.
The US, on the other hand, should recognize that China indeed is a rising power, and is not to be taken lightly, so it should engage China in terms of, for example, cooperative efforts, such as cooperation in counter-terrorism where both countries are major victims.
As well as the Southeast Asian countries, we have to recognize that China is indeed a major regional power to stay, and we too have to very proactively engage China especially economically to deeper economic cooperation with China, so as to sort of promote more understandings between both sides, and thereby avoid misunderstandings especially in military terms.
We should also help China harness its growing military power in, from our point of view, in more productive areas such as anti-piracy and humanitarian efforts.
IDSS / Online
Last updated on 16/11/2015