At World Policy Journal, which I have just discovered has an interesting blog, Amitai Etzioni in July argued that mainstream U.S. views on India and China are deeply flawed. When people talk about balancing Chinese power with a democratic ally in India, Etzioni argues, we buy into a long-discredited ideology of international relations.
The very concept of balancing does not stand close scrutiny. What does it mean for India to balance China? China is developing a major navy and a string of ports of call in the Indian Ocean. India is doing the same. Most likely both are wasting precious resources because in the age of missiles and drones, ships are sitting ducks for low-cost smart bombing. …
About the only reason I can see that some are demonizing China is that some of our agencies need an enemy to justify their forces and budgets, which are still focused on conventional warfare rather than on terrorism, nuclear proliferation, and asymmetric warfare, and to stay the misbegotten course in Afghanistan.
This is far from uncontroversial, but it’s an argument conspicuously missing from the U.S. public debate on China.