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Over the past week, candidates from both right and left have been talking tough about China. Bernie Sanders and Donald Trump have focused on economic issues. Hillary Clinton has commented on Chinese cyberattacks. Scott Walker and Marco Rubio have each brought up Beijing’s behavior in the South China Sea as well as its intensifying crack down on human rights activists.
We don’t need to wait for the elections this fall to see that Burma has already limited its people’s freedom to speak by taking away their vote; or that rather than strengthening the roots of democracy, the Burmese government is poisoning them; or that the rights and freedoms for all people in Burma have, in important ways, been curtailed since the last elections were held.
A new study, which claims Chinese coal emissions between 2000 and 2012 were overstated by 40%, may prove inaccurate. Nevertheless, it highlights problems with data provided by Chinese national and local governments. American policy needs better information much more than it needs theatrics, and climate policy is no exception.
As the nuclear balance of power has grown increasingly complex in the years after the fall of the Soviet Union, the aperture with which US strategists must view the challenge of nuclear deterrence has widened. In the wake of the recent Iran deal, addressed elsewhere in this series, that aperture will likely widen further. With that challenge in mind, the next president must continue his or her predecessors’ success at avoiding the use of nuclear weapons; it may not be easy, but its importance can’t be overstated. Looking ahead, here are the 5 questions the next president will have to address.
Southeast Asia is of growing importance to the United States. Unlike a number of countries in East Asia, those of Southeast Asia have healthy demographic profiles and the potential for robust economic growth. And as China seeks to expand its diplomatic influence and military power throughout the Asia-pacific, this sub-region is increasingly becoming a center of geopolitical competition.