The Possibility of Power Sharing between China and the US:
Implications for Japan's national interests
This paper examines the foreign policies of the US and China from the perspective of their respective militaries and economies. It addresses the options for future Sino-US relations in the Asia-Pacific region, in the context of preventing their rivalry from escalating into conflict, with a particular focus on the concept of a power-sharing arrangement, such as a ‘concert of Asia’ as has been proposed by Hugh White. The paper argues that while such an arrangement could assist in stabilizing the Sino-US relationship, it would not be an appropriate solution for Japan. In part, that is because a ‘concert of Asia’, as currently proposed, does not provide a solution to the ongoing tensions between Japan and China over disputed territories. It is also highly unlikely that Japan would accept any arrangement that requires it to relinquish its security treaty with the US, and to re-emerge as a self-reliant military power, potentially armed with nuclear weapons.
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