China rises

China rises
China’s ascent to peer status with the U.S. is the century’s salient geopolitical fact. Beijing has used its growing power to turn neighbors into dependents and expand overseas. Its Belt and Road Initiative shows long-term vision but has also raised tensions along Asia’s rim. Internally, China faces financial and demographic challenges that will be hard to overcome, even as President Xi consolidates power.

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A woman working in a rice field, Can Tho, Vietnam

Vietnam’s place in the U.S.-China great power competition

As the rivalry between the U.S. and China heats up, Vietnam’s most important goal – to maintain autonomy – is becoming trickier. So far, close party ties have helped keep relations with Beijing cordial, despite fervent anti-China feeling among regular Vietnamese. If its northern neighbor increases the pressure however, especially on issues like the South China Sea and the Mekong River, Vietnam has made clear that it will explore other options, including closer ties with the U.S.

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