David Shambaugh’s ‘Where Great Powers Meet’ offers a nuanced look at how Asean states balance their ties with Beijing and Washington, Bilahari Kausikan says in this book review.
‘If China holds the throats of half of Asean in its hands, the bloc’s ‘centrality’ – already questioned – is precarious’.
US-China strategic rivalry is unlikely to have as clear-cut an end as US-Soviet competition. It’s more plausible to imagine them stumbling into the future locked in an uneasy embrace.
This new generation of diplomats believe China’s time is now, but as they try to please their boss, they should not add to the country’s external uncertainties.
If a global recession hits, political uncertainties may be enhanced, similar to how the 1997 Asian economic crisis catalysed Suharto’s fall in Indonesia and saw the rise of Thailand’s Thaksin.
As the Communist Party realises reforms will be a substantial undertaking, its current uncertainty is a breeding ground for unanticipated events.
Beijing will never tolerate any action that undermines national unity and the extradition bill merely formalises ‘one country, two systems’, says retired Singapore diplomat Bilahari Kausikan.
Singapore’s ambassador at large Bilahari Kausikan gives his views on the North Korean nuclear crisis, the rise of China and the potential for conflict between Beijing and New Delhi
Why the global order is becoming ever more uncertain