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March 13, 2009



You pretty much nailed it here. Nice analysis. China is using its clout to expand sphere of influence while reducing ours. (It's our own fault, but that's a different thought.)

It's like the neighbor who loans you a few grand to get through a rough patch, only to see you driving a brand new car and hiring landscapers, (all the while donating the rest to *other* neighbors he doesn't even like).

What this will mean in practice, on any given foreign policy issue (good catch on Darfur, btw), is that there will be a kind of non-verbal 'dance'. China signals what it would like, and we take that into account in what we choose to do and choose not to do. Or they don't even signal but we go out of our way to consider their desires.

Play it out just a little and it's not hard to envision our being pressured into not 'wasting' our resources on (say) confronting Russia's increasingly assertive moves in our hemisphere, or (say) spending any more blood and treasure protecting Israel and keeping the islamists at bay. (China knows how to take care of them far more effectively, albeit brutally, than we do; it has been doing so for years in its western provinces.)

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