A new cold war? | The star

“The Aukus agreement shows very clearly that East Asia has become the center of the United States’ global security strategy,” Professor Zhu Feng of Nanjing University recently quoted in the New York. York Times in an article on the trilateral security pact signed on September 15, 2021, between Australia, the United Kingdom and the United States.

“For most Chinese academics like me, we are really very afraid that in the competition between Beijing and Washington, they will only look at national economic development …

“The security environment in the region has never been increasingly volatile,” said Prof Zhu, who revisited the topic during the recent New Inclusive Asia Dialogue (NIAD) 2021 titled “Geopolitical and Security Implications of ‘Aukus sur l’Asean’, organized by a local think tank. Center for a New Inclusive Asia (CNIA).

Professor Zhu, who is the executive dean of the School of International Relations and executive director of the Collaborative Innovation Center of South China Sea Studies at Nanjing University, was one of nine eminent scholars and scholars of China, Great Brittany, the United States and the Asean countries. share their views and ideas on how Aukus will impact the region’s strategic landscape at NIAD2021.

Speaking at the second session of the dialogue which covered “Aukus’ security implications on ASEAN,” Prof Zhu explained why China opposes the pact and how it would endanger the regional security order.

Like others, Professor Zhu has raised concerns about one of the first initiatives under Aukus – for Australia to procure the technology for eight nuclear-powered submarines from the United States and the United States. Britain.

“If Australia embarks on rearmament of nuclear submarines, then the question is who will be next in the region? he said.

“From a Chinese perspective, we see Aukus as a very significant and worrying escalation of the conflict and tensions between the great powers, beyond the agreement on the US-Australian submarines, as this will alert China to the way to counteract an arms race targeting China. between the United States and its allies in the region.

“I really hope for a reasonable response from China, and that it will not overreact because our national interest is definitely economic development. I really don’t want to see China’s economic development derail, ”he said.

The People’s Liberation Army Navy fired anti-aircraft artillery during a live-fire training exercise off the South China Sea in 2020. – Xinhua

Ultimately, he said, the United States and China should start negotiating on how regional peace can be guaranteed while serving the interests of both powers.

“We don’t want to see the development of a new cold war.”

Professor Zhu’s arguments echo those of CNIA co-founder, former Malaysian Transport Minister Tan Sri Ong Tee Keat, in his opening speech.

“In the context of the current dynamics, Aukus could serve as an additional tool in the American toolbox to make the world safe for the United States, with a view to safeguarding its geopolitical primacy,” he said.

Dr Mahmud Ali, associate researcher at the Institute of China Studies at Universiti Malaya, who summed up the dialogue, however, said the prospect of another Cold War was long overdue.

“What we are seeing, I think, is a slice of two opposing trajectories that began in 1991 when the Soviet Union collapsed, and since then the United States has made a decision never to give up its systemic supremacy. .

“And everything she has done since then, in terms of geopolitical and strategic policy making, has been to ensure that no competitor like the Soviet Union ever emerges on the planet, whether politically, economically. or militarily, and all the instruments of its state power must be used against such a potential, adversary or competitor, ”he said.

He said it got even stronger when then-US President George HW Bush approved defense planning guidelines for 1994-99, in which he specifically stated that the United States will never allow for no competitor to challenge it like the Soviet Union did in the world, which basically means no competitor would be allowed to rise.

“And if they did, US forces and all state assets – not only military but also economic, diplomatic, scientific, technological – would be deployed to ensure that such a threat was quickly eliminated.

“Everything we see now, whether in all the recent regional pacts, whether in NATO [the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation] shifting attention from the Atlantic to the Pacific, is an attempt to ensure that the United States never loses its supremacy. In my opinion, this is an impossible mission. But nonetheless, the Americans will not give up, and the way the Chinese react, the way the ASEAN countries react, will all shape our future, ”said Mahmud.

Comments are closed.