History should be a stark warning to President Xi Jinping: if he allows Russia to divide the world with its war on Ukraine, it is China and its exporters who will pay the heaviest price.
For Minxin Pei's latest contributions to The Japan Times, see below:
Putin is sending one clear message with his Ukraine invasion: if you have nukes, nobody messes with you. The security risks this poses cannot be overestimated.
Critics argue that the U.S. President Nixon's 1972 China visit was a strategic blunder. But the 40 years of peace and stability between the two former foes must be considered a success.
The stakes for China are high, but Beijing has been extremely careful about showing its hand over the Ukraine crisis.
Some regional powers will be tempted to bully weaker neighbors because they think that the U.S. pivot to East Asia will make American military intervention much less likely.
The regional trade pact and security agreement that were championed by Japan’s former prime minister look likely to shape Asia’s geopolitical landscape for a long time to come.
U.S. lawmakers may be fretting unnecessarily, because the Chinese government seems to be doing everything possible to lose its tech race with America.
The fact that no other such party in modern times has survived for a century should give China’s leaders cause for worry, not celebration.
The best we can hope for is that the two superpowers are disciplined enough to avoid endangering humanity’s survival as they jostle for geopolitical advantage.
China can afford an economic decoupling with the U.S. (though it will be costly). It cannot afford a simultaneous decoupling with the rest of the major Western economies.