The Case of China

In the shadow of the recent summit between Donald Trump and Xi Jinping, onlookers are eager for clues to the future of Sino–US relations and US policy in the Asia–Pacific. In the past context of a fairly stable US policy approach, China has developed entrenched perceptions of US policy, grounded in China’s assessment of its own national interests. Even when Sino–US relations are at their best, many in China tend to “blame” the United States—or, at a minimum, distrust it—for reasons that reflect basic divergences between the two countries’ national identities. This article assesses critiques of US global, regional, and bilateral policies through four analytical lenses: ideology, international relations, civilizational values, and regime stability. Though the future of US policy is uncertain, China’s national identity will continue to drive its perceptions of its national interests and shape its views of bilateral Sino–US relations, the Asia–Pacific region, and its position in the international system. The blame game is unlikely to end anytime soon.


At the broadest level, many Chinese international relations analysts view the United States as a hegemonic power that is trying to maintain its dominance over both the Asia–Pacific region and the global world order, while preventing China, an emerging great power, from taking its rightful position as a regional and global power. While these claims were once limited to the Asia–Pacific region, Chinese ambitions and confidence have grown substantially in the aftermath of the global financial crisis, prompting Chinese analysts to assert their right to rewrite the rules of the global system.

Underlying much of the current hegemonic discourse is the Chinese perception that many in the United States perceive competition between China and the United States as inevitable. In recent years, much of this discussion has centered on the Thucydides Trap, a phrase popularized by Graham Allison, which refers to the inevitability of conflict between a rising power and the existing dominant power. The term, while relatively new, builds on A. F. K. Organski’s power transition theory, which has long influenced many realist US foreign policy analysts’ views of China, and, accordingly, Chinese perceptions of US foreign policy. However, while Organski’s approach emphasizes the impact of structural changes in the distribution of power on the probability of war, the Thucydides Trap adds that the “fear instilled” in the status quo power drives the two states toward conflict. Officially, the Chinese government rejects the existence of a Thucydides Trap (as did the Obama administration). In 2015 remarks in Seattle, Xi Jinping asserted, “There is no such thing as the so-called Thucydides Trap in the world. But should major countries time and again make the mistakes of strategic miscalculation, they might create such traps for themselves.”1 Nevertheless, Chinese analysts debate the extent to which the United States perceives such a trap (despite official US claims to the contrary), and, by acting on these fears, increases the risk of conflict or competition.2

Given the view that the United States perceives itself to be competing with China, Chinese analysts believe that the United States is determined to preserve its hegemonic position and prevent China from executing its rightful rule-making power. From this perspective, the United States seeks to perpetuate the existing world order, which it designed to advance US national interests and institutionalize Western values. In the Chinese view, however, some aspects of the current world order are “inequitable” and “irrational” and require reform because they prioritize the values and interests of Western great powers over those of emerging states.3 Chinese analysts emphasize that they do not seek to overturn the existing world order (and criticize US analysts who make such alarmist claims), but instead, they seek to reform the order from within as an equal partner to the United States.4 Convinced of the legitimacy of their demands for rule-making authority, they are indignant about what they perceive as efforts by the United States to constrain their behavior. In addition to asserting their right to set the rules in existing international organizations, the Chinese government has established alternative institutions, most notably the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) and the still-under-negotiation Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP), in which it has greater authority. China is also taking a more active role in issues of global governance, including climate change.

Chinese analysts not only believe that the United States wants to maintain its global hegemonic position, but also view the Obama administration’s Asia–Pacific rebalance as an attempt to reassert US regional dominance against a rising China. Filtered through this lens, regional economic and security developments look to many Chinese like American attempts to contain Chinese influence. Many in China view the US rebalance as a source of increasing regional Sino–US competition and blame the United States for “meddling and provoking conflict.”5

Chinese analysts argue that the United States has adopted a variety of strategies to maintain its regional hegemony. First, some argue, the United States under Obama sought to maintain its global and regional hegemony through military deterrence. In its relations with China, Zhang Wenzong asserts, the United States has recently used military deterrence to advance its interests in the Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands, the South China Sea, and the Scarborough Shoal.6 Similarly, Liu Feitao cites increased US regional military deployments, its cooperation with the Philippines and Singapore, and its military presence in the South China Sea under the guise of freedom of navigation exercises as examples of US efforts to “contain, deter and interfere with China.”7

A second tactic is non-military coercion, including diplomatic pressure and attempts to isolate China in multilateral settings over its oil exploration and land reclamation efforts in the South China Sea and limited economic sanctions to influence China’s cybersecurity and non-proliferation policies.8 Third, analysts highlight the now-defunct TPP negotiations and the flurry of Chinese activity in constructing regional economic institutions, such as the RCEP negotiations, the AIIB, and the One Belt One Road (OBOR) initiative, as evidence that the two countries are competing for the right to set the rules of the regional economic order.9

Finally, Chinese analysts perceive US efforts to shore up relations with key allies like South Korea and Japan as part of an effort to maintain US regional hegemony by encircling China, inspired by the tactics of the Cold War.10 From this perspective, US support for Japan’s “new security laws,” the revised US–Japan defense guidelines, and Abe Shinzo’s revision of Article 9 are tactics deployed to more effectively contain China’s rise.11 Many Chinese experts are similarly convinced that US efforts to strengthen its alliance with South Korea, including the recent decision to deploy Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD), also reflect a desire to limit China’s regional power. Chinese observers worry that the US system of alliance extends beyond key East Asian alliances to include India and ASEAN (reflecting, of course, the greater reach of China’s military power).12 Analysts further argue that US attempts to strengthen its regional alliance system extend beyond its bilateral relations. According to Liu Qing, the United States has replaced the traditional hub-and-spokes model with a new approach that encourages increased cooperation between its alliance partners, such as Japan and Australia. He adds that the United States prioritizes multilateral security mechanisms, such as US–Japan–Australia trilateral cooperation, that could support a coordinated military strategy in the event of a regional conflict, presumably related to China’s maritime ambitions.13 Others worry about the resumption of the US–India–Japan–Australia quadrilateral security dialogue.14 In sum, the belief that the United States seeks to maintain its global and regional hegemony drives Chinese interpretations of its behavior.

International Relations

In addition, Chinese analysts blame the United States for regional instability around the world, from the Middle East to the Asia–Pacific. The impact of US policy since the Asia–Pacific rebalance is of particular concern. Many Chinese analysts blame the United States for continued instability on the Korean Peninsula, claiming that US participation in the Korean War played a major role in the historical division of the peninsula. Today, Chinese analysts argue that North Korea’s decision to develop and test nuclear weapons is a rational response to the security threat posed by the United States (and its ally, South Korea). They view the unwillingness of the United States to cancel its joint military exercises with South Korea as a precondition for a North Korean agreement to halt its nuclear tests as hardening the North Korean position.15 An alternative view refrains from blaming the United States directly, but argues that North Korea pursues nuclear weapons because it perceives an insecure international environment, and it should not have to abandon its nuclear program until it has received a security guarantee.16 Chinese analysts urge the resumption of the Six-Party Talks, and blame an overly rigid US position for the North Korean decision to pull out of talks in 2009.17 They also reject US efforts to pressure China to take a firmer line on North Korea, arguing that a hardline Chinese position would worsen Sino–North Korean relations and could increase North Korea’s direct threat to China.18 Chinese observers were no doubt appalled by Secretary of State Rex Tillerson’s comments in South Korea that “all options are on the table” regarding North Korea—including military action—though he took a significantly less aggressive public position on his next stop in China.19

Chinese observers strongly reject the US–South Korean decision to deploy THAAD as a defense against North Korean missiles. They argue that the deployment of THAAD is likely to worsen peninsular relations and provoke North Korea to further develop its nuclear weapons. They often voice suspicions that the radar system is actually targeted against China (and Russia).20 Former official Yang Xiyu has expressed concern that the United States will seek to deploy multiple regional antimissile systems to deter China’s growing military capabilities. Chinese skepticism that THAAD will improve South Korea’s security situation supports their belief that China is the true target of the system.21 The Chinese government has embarked on an economic pressure campaign in an attempt to persuade the South Korean government to halt the THAAD deployment.22

Chinese analysts also blame the United States for aggravating tensions in the South China Sea. In their view, the South China Sea has become a key site of competition between China and the United States.23 They worry that some ASEAN member states have sought closer security relations with the United States (as well as Japan and India) in order to check China’s rise, and claim that these actions are destabilizing the region.24 They argue that US involvement in territorial and maritime disputes and its patrols under the “pretext” of freedom of navigation have motivated states like the Philippines and Vietnam to adopt more assertive policies toward China regarding their bilateral sovereignty disputes.25 Chinese observers contend that these states have become dissatisfied with ASEAN’s ability to handle the sovereignty disputes and, therefore, seek to advance their interests through alternative means, including through military cooperation with the United States.26 Chinese observers point to recent developments like the 2014 US–Philippines Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement and the 2016 US decision to lift the ban on arms sales to Vietnam as signs that the United States is trying to shore up its alliances and its allies’ military capabilities so that they can better enforce their interests against China.27

Chinese observers are widely convinced that the United States instigated the Hague arbitration case brought by the Philippines against China in order to advance its own regional strategic interests. Jin Canrong argues that the United States helped the Philippines to “plot” the case by aiding the preparation of the lengthy indictment and more than 3000 pages of supporting documents.28 Likewise, Zhu Feng acknowledges the “ingenious” decision of the Philippines to employ prestigious international lawyers and experts on maritime law, including the American lawyer Paul Reichler, and its courting of US support.29 The US leadership continued to support the Philippines decision to bring the case throughout the arbitration process.30 In the Chinese view, the United States supported the arbitration process for strategic political reasons, not because of its commitment to a legal principle. The tribunal offered an opportunity for the United States to contain China by litigating its claims to the maritime areas within the 9-dash line. While rejecting the legitimacy of the adjudication process, Chinese observers are keenly aware that the decision sets an international legal precedent that might be used in future “copycat” litigation by countries like Japan or Vietnam, and would no doubt blame the United States should this occur.31

Chinese observers also believe the United States has contributed to worsening Sino–Japanese relations by supporting Japan’s rightward shift under Abe. According to An Chengri and Jiang Lilong, the United States has long encouraged Japan to bear more of the burden for regional and global security and has urged it to move beyond financial and logistical support to more active military participation.32 Chinese analysts sharply criticize US support for Abe’s successful expansion of the scope for Self-Defense Forces activities under the 2015 revised US–Japan defense guidelines and Japan’s elimination of the ban on collective self-defense.33 Deeply concerned about the implications of a more assertive Japan for Chinese national security and regional stability, they blame the United States for enabling, and even instigating, Japan’s pursuit of a “normal” military posture.34 Chinese experts also criticize US support for Japanese claims to the Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands. Following the Japanese nationalization of three of the islands in 2012, US officials repeatedly asserted that Article 5 of the US–Japan Security Treaty encompasses defense of the islands, a policy recently affirmed by Defense Secretary James Mattis.35 Although Chinese observers recognize that the dynamics of the Asia–Pacific region are complex and that neighboring states act to advance their own national interests, they, nevertheless, one-sidedly blame the United States for regional instability.

Civilizational Values

Third, Chinese observers blame the United States for engaging in cultural imperialism by pushing “universal values,” based on Western liberal democracy and free market capitalism (in Chinese essays, this phrase always appears in quotation marks to reflect skepticism about the true universality of these values). These universal values include principles like democracy, human rights, freedom, and liberty. Tang Qing and Feng Yanli trace US “values diplomacy” to the Carter administration, which emphasized human rights as a determinant of bilateral US foreign policy.36 One might trace the US commitment to universal values back even farther to their embedding in post-World War II institutions like the UN. This commitment to universal values continues to shape US foreign policy and is shared by many US allies (although Zhang Wenzong expresses reasonable doubts about the extent to which ideological principles, rather than hard security objectives, will influence US foreign policy under the Trump administration).37

Chinese analysts see the US commitment to the spread of universal values as a legacy of the Cold War. They believe that the United States interpreted the collapse of the Soviet Union and the liberalization of Eastern Europe as an ideological triumph of Western values over socialist principles. Some argue that US leaders concluded they had a “responsibility” to spread the values of liberal democracy and market economy to more “backward” states, which they have sought to do through cultural exchanges, embedding American values in global political and economic structures, and explicitly exporting the American value system. 38 Many others are more cynical about US motives. From their perspective, the United States uses lofty sounding principles to justify strategic interests grounded in realist power politics.39 Among the many observers who view the Obama administration’s Asia–Pacific rebalance as an effort to contain China’s rise and limit its regional influence, some highlight the US use of soft power tools, including efforts to strengthen relations with regional democracies and to draw on shared Western values to isolate China.40

Regardless of how genuine they believe US motivations to be, Chinese observers agree that since the demise of the Soviet Union, and especially since China’s rise became apparent, China has become the key target of US “cultural diplomacy.”41 This policy has led to repeated flare-ups in Sino–US relations. During Bill Clinton’s first term, for example, the United States attempted to link progress on human rights abuses to US support for Chinese MFN status, a policy that ultimately failed.42 Tired of the annual State Department report on human rights in China, the Chinese foreign ministry began issuing its own reports on human rights in the United States in 1999.43 While China’s immense strategic and economic significance has made human rights issues less salient in US foreign policy in recent years, they are still capable of stirring up tensions. In 2012, US efforts to assist blind human rights activist Chen Guangcheng, including a stunning escape from house arrest to the US embassy (and ultimately a permanent move to the United States), threatened to destabilize the bilateral relationship.44 Chinese analysts are particularly critical of the US practice of making foreign aid conditional on human rights metrics, which they view as an improper intervention in the internal affairs of other states. By contrast, the Chinese rejection of conditionality in its bilateral aid deals and perceptions that loans made through the new Chinese-led AIIB might come with fewer strings are key selling points of Chinese aid to developing countries. Chinese authors also accuse the United States of attacking China over its human rights record in order to isolate it internationally and achieve their strategic and political objectives.45

Chinese criticism of US cultural imperialism is often framed explicitly in terms of Gramscian “cultural hegemony,” especially among the faculty of Marxist departments. In this view, the United States seeks to establish cultural hegemony in order to maintain its global supremacy, in an era in which hard power tools may be less successful than soft power tools. This perspective sees US cultural hegemony as a threat to the “cultural national security” of developing countries like China.46 In a particularly strong rejection, Shen He argues that US cultural hegemony weakens the Chinese people’s confidence in their own culture and displaces Marxist-Leninism thought, and must therefore be overcome.47 It would be a mistake, however, to dismiss these Chinese concerns as boilerplate ideological musings. China’s efforts to counter US soft power with Chinese soft power include a substantial emphasis on alternative Chinese principles. The Ministry of Education’s global Confucian Institute program, established in 2004, was an early sign of an ambitious effort to promote Chinese language and culture abroad. Around the same time, the government established a new Academy of Marxism under Chinese Academy of Social Sciences; in 2014, the center enrolled 100 students in its newly established PhD program.48 These developments indicate official Chinese efforts to prevent “‘peaceful evolution’ by strengthening the official ideology.”49 Meanwhile, Chinese scholars call for more extensive use of Chinese soft power through a cultural “going out” strategy and the global institutionalization of values and norms grounded in traditional Chinese culture. 50

In challenging the universality of Western values, Chinese scholars have long emphasized that China has its own fundamental values. These include the right to subsistence and development. While Western values highlight the political rights of the individual, Chinese perspectives approach rights from a collective perspective, emphasize that citizens have both rights and duties, and seek the integrated development of citizens’ rights in the political, economic, social, and cultural domains.51 They emphasize fairness and the “guarantee of common economic prosperity and equality.”52 The stress on economic rights, rather than political rights, is evident in the PRC’s 2014 Human Rights White Paper, which lays out the Chinese commitment to ensuring that all citizens “are able to achieve personal development and to contribute to society, to enjoy equal opportunities to achieve their potential and to realize their dreams, and to enjoy equal opportunities to participate in the development of the country.”53 These concerns are also apparent in Chinese critiques of the global world order as unfair and inequitable in its treatment of developing countries. At the most fundamental level, the Chinese perspective rejects the notion of “universal” human rights values. Instead, it holds that each country should define human rights in accordance with its own situation and rejects the imposition of international norms (or the norms of any particular state) on other states.54

Widespread Chinese skepticism over the universality of Western values and the view that Chinese and US/Western concepts are at odds strengthen the Chinese perception of competition between China and the United States for the future world order. Wang Jisi argues that the United States perceives a competition between “two orders,” the existing US-led international order based on Western values and the Chinese domestic order based on Chinese values.55 The incompatibility between these two value systems underlies US fears that it might lose control of the global system as China rises. Drawing on the experience of its Cold War ideological struggle against the USSR, the United States fears that China would impose its own values, undermining the foundational principles of the existing international order. This fear strengthens US resolve to prevent China from gaining any rule-making authority.56 Consequently, the Sino–US struggle over the right to lead the future world order turns, in this view, on the underlying incompatibility between their fundamental values.

Regime Stability

Finally, Chinese analysts blame the United States for seeking to weaken the China’s communist regime. This distrust has deep roots in the anti-communist policies of the United States during the Cold War and its reluctance to recognize the People’s Republic of China (PRC) as the official government of China. Although Sino–US relations have improved significantly since Nixon’s opening, Chinese observers know that the United States would prefer that China be led by a democratic government and argue that it seeks to reform China in its own image.57 As Wang Jisi and Kenneth Lieberthal argue, since 1949 “it has been a constant and strong belief that the US has sinister designs to sabotage the Communist leadership.”58 According to Wang, the primacy of maintaining Chinese Communist Party (CCP) rule and suspicion about US intentions toward the regime remain the key problem of Sino–US relations.59

In this light, Chinese authorities are particularly sensitive to US support where CCP legitimacy is weakest, such as in the autonomous regions of Xinjiang and Tibet. They are also well aware that many “separatist” groups have external leaders and institutions located in the United States. In the wake of the 2009 Urumqi riots, Chinese media blamed US-based Uyghur activist Rebiya Kadeer and the World Uyghur Congress she heads for instigating the violence.60 (In 2015, the National Endowment for Democracy offered a grant of $260,000 to the World Uyghur Congress, and another $295,000 to the Ugyhur American Association.61) Meanwhile, the Chinese government is critical of US support for Tibet. Chinese observers blame the United States for encouraging “separatist” forces who instigated the 2008 Tibetan riots, and who continue to support Tibetan independence.62 Obama met with the Dalai Lama four times. The United States and China maintain an uneasy agreement on the terms of these meetings and the United States is careful to state that it views Tibet as part of China. Nevertheless, on the occasion of the 2016 meeting between Obama and the Dalai Lama, Chinese Foreign Ministry Spokesman Lu Kang called the Dalai Lama “a political exile who has long been engaged in anti-China separatist plots under the cloak of religion,” and asserted that “if the US arranges such a meeting, it will send a wrong signal to the separatist forces trumpeting ‘Tibetan independence.’”63 The United States has also become a home to the Falun Gong movement, which underwent a CCP eradication campaign in 1999, and whose Shen Yun Performing Arts shows have become ubiquitous in major US cities over the past decade.

Chinese distrust of US intentions toward the CCP also flares up during times of potential political vulnerability. When calls for a Chinese “jasmine revolution” emerged in early 2011, during the Arab Spring, Chinese officials blamed the United States for supporting the pro-democracy efforts. The website on which the anonymous calls for protest were disseminated,, is run by overseas dissidents, many of whom live in the United States.64 China grew particularly suspicious after then-US ambassador Jon Huntsman strolled with his family through Wangfujing in Beijing on the same afternoon that a pro-democracy protest had been set to take place at McDonalds in the upscale shopping district. (The United States insisted it was merely a coincidence.)65 From the nationalist pages of the Global Times to more mainstream publications, Chinese authors portray US democracy promotion “as an American conspiracy to split China” by advancing “a hidden plan for ‘peaceful evolution’” from socialism to democracy.66


Through the lenses of ideology, international relations, civilizational values, and regime stability, Chinese analysts find ample reasons to distrust the United States. These critiques of the impact of US actions on regional and global stability are longstanding and grounded in Chinese perceptions of their own national identity. This is not to say that most Chinese analysts are pessimistic about the future of Sino–US relations or the Asia–Pacific region. Many carefully emphasize the potential for successful cooperation. Nevertheless, the types of critiques identified here have endured for many years. As the Trump administration develops its approach to China and the Asia–Pacific, it remains to be seen whether these criticisms will persist, or whether a sharply different American interpretation of its regional and global objectives will help to alter Chinese perceptions.

1. “Full Text of Xi Jinping’s Speech on China-U.S. Relations in Seattle,” Xinhua, September 24, 2015,

2. Liu Feitao, “The Strengthening of US Competition with China and the Future Trend of China–US Relations,” China International Studies, no. 1 (2016): 86, 92–93.

3. Liu Jianfei, “ZhongMei Xinxing Daguo Guanxi Zhong de Guoji Zhixu Boyi,” Meiguo Yanjiu, no. 5 (2016): 11.

4. Yuan Peng, “Shijie Xin Zhixu Huhuan ZhongMei Xinxing Daguo Guanxi,” Shijie Jingji Yu Zhengzhi, no. 9 (2016): 10; Liu Jianfei 2016, 13–14.

5. Zhang Wenzong, “Meiguo DuiHua Weishe Yu Xiepo Ji Zhongguo Yingdui,” Xiandai Guoji Guanxi, no. 12 (2016): 27; Yuan Peng 2016, 12.

6. Zhang 2016, 25.

7. Liu Feitao 2016, 80.

8. Zhang 2016, 25.

9. Liu Feitao 2016, 83.

10. See Liu Feitao 2016, 81–82.

11. Ren Weidong, “MeiRi Zai Wanhuo; Qie Wan Qie Tante,” People’s Daily Overseas Edition, April 25, 2014,

12. See, for example, Ding Cong and Sun Haoliang, “Qianxi AoYin Zai Anquan Lingyu de Shuangbian Guanxi Jianshe,” Heping Yu Fazhan, no. 4 (2016): 68–81; Chen Xiangmiao and Ma Chao, “Considering ASEAN’s Interests Regarding the South China Sea Problem and Its Policy Choices (Lun Dongmeng Dui Nanhai Wenti de Liyi Yaoqiu He Zhengce Xuanze),” Guoji Guancha, no. 1 (2016); Li Dongyi, “Zhongguo-DongMeng Guanxi Yu DongMeng Diquzhuyi Jinqi Hudong Jiexi,” Taipingyang Xuebao 24, no. 8 (2016): 40–52.

13. Liu Qing, “RiAo Guanxi Xin Fanzhan Ji Xianzhixing Yinsu,” Guoji Wenti Yanjiu, no. 5 (2016): 127.

14. Ding and Sun 2016, 81.

15. See, for example, Liu Jiangyong, “Chaoxian Bandao Jushi Yu Dongbeiya Kechixu Anquan,” Dongbeiya Luntan, no. 3 (2016): 4–5.

16. Wang Sheng and Ling Shengli, “Chao He Wenti Jiejue de ‘Shuangguizhi’ Xin Silu Tantao,” Dongbeiya Luntan, no. 3 (2016): 20; Yufan Huang, “Q. and A.: Yan Xuetong Urges China to Adopt a More Assertive Foreign Policy,” The New York Times, February 9, 2016.

17. Cheng Xiaohe, “Liufang Huitan Zaiyi: Yicheng Tiaozheng Yu Jizhi Jianshe,” Waijiao Pinglun, no. 4 (2016).

18. Liu Jiangyong 2016, 7.

19. Anne Gearan and Anna Fifield, “Tillerson Says ‘All Options Are on the Table’ When It Comes to North Korea,” Washington Post, March 19, 2017.

20. Liu Jiangyong 2016, 8–9.

21. Gerry Mullany and Chris Buckley, “China Warns of Arms Race After U.S. Deploys Missile Defense in South Korea,” New York Times, March 7, 2017.

22. Stephan Haggard, “The Most Important Korea Story of 2017: China, South Korea and THAAD,” Peterson Institute for International Economics, January 11, 2017.

23. Xia Liping and Nie Zhengnan, “21 Shiji Meiguo Nanhai Zhengce Yu ZhongMei Nanhai Boyi,” Shehui Kexie, no. 10 (2016): 28–40.

24. Chen and Ma 2016.

25. Xia and Nie 2016.

26. Li 2016.

27. Wei Zongyou, “Meiguo Nanhai Zhengce Xin Fazhan Yu ZhongMei Yatai Gongchu,” Guoji Guancha, no. 6 (2016): 141–54.

28. Jin Canrong, “‘Nanhai Zhongcai An’ Hou Zhongguo Mianlin de Yali Yu Yingdui Zhi Dao,” Taipingyang Xuebao, no. 7 (2016): 51.

29. Zhu Feng, “ZhongFei Zhongcai de Panjue Jieguo Hui Gaibian Nanhai Jushi Ma?,” YaTai Anquan Yu Haiyang Yanjiu, no. 3 (2016): 2.

30. Wei 2016, 148.

31. Jin Canrong 2016, 51; Kong Lingjie, “Predictions about the South China Sea Arbitration and Analysis of Its Influence on Our Country (Nanhai Zhongcai an Qianjing Yuce Ji Qi Dui Woguo de Jingxiang Fenxi),” YaTai Anquan Yu Haiyang Yanjiu, no. 3 (2016): 23–26; Liang Yunxiang, “Analysis of the China–Philippines South China Sea Arbitration Case (Zhong Fei Nanhai Zhongcai an Pingxi),” YaTai Anquan Yu Haiyang Yanjiu, no. 3 (2016): 27–29.

32. An Chengri and Jiang Lilong, “Riben ’Xinanbao Faan’ Ji Qi Dui Zhongri Guanxi de Yingxiang,” Riben Wenti Yanjiu, no. 3 (2016): 137.

33. Ren 2014.

34. An and Jiang 2016, 139.

35. Zhang 2016, 26.

36. Tang Qing and Feng Yanli, “Meiguo Ezhi Zhongguo de San Ba Ruandaozi,” Shijie Shehuizhuyi Yanjiu, no. 2 (2016): 102.

37. Zhang 2016, 27. See, for example, discussion of Japan’s values-based diplomacy under Abe in Li Xiaojun, “Riben Yu Yindu Heneng Hezuo de Dongyin, Yingxiang Ji Qianjing,” Taipingyang Xuebao 24, no. 3 (2016): 29–38.

38. Jian Taojie, “Baquan Wenhua Yu Wenhua Weixie,” Taipingyang Xuebao 19, no. 6 (2011): 25, 26 (quotes), 29; see also Liu Jianfei 2016, 16.

39. Sun Jie, “Yingdui Meiguo Wenhua Baquan de Zhongguo Zhanlüe,” Renmin Luntan, no. 11 (2016): 136; Wang Jisi and Kenneth Lieberthal, “Addressing U.S.–China Strategic Distrust” (Washington, DC: Brookings Institution, 2012).

40. Tang and Feng 2016; Li Jiaxiang, “Meiguo YaTai Zhanlüe Zhong Ezhi Zhongguo de Ruanshili Celüe Ji Qi Yingdui,” Lilun Daokan, no. 7 (2016): 110.

41. Tang and Feng 2016; Shen He, “Meiguo Wenhua Baquan Yu ‘Pu Shi Jiazhi’ Zai Woguo de Chuanbo,” Sixiang Jiaoyu Yanjiu, no. 1 (2017): 40.

42. David M. Lampton, Same Bed, Different Dreams (Berkeley, Calif.: University of California Press, 2001), 39–45.

43. Ming Wan, Human Rights in Chinese Foreign Relations (Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2013), 60.

44. Andrew Jacobs and Jonathan Ansfield, “Chinese Activist Chen Guangcheng Escapes House Arrest in China,” The New York Times, April 27, 2012.

45. Tang and Feng 2016, 102–104; Sun 2016, 136–137.

46. Shen 2017, 37; Sun 2016, 136–137; Jian Taojie 2016, 29.

47. Shen 2017, 37.

48. “China’s Top Academy Teaches Marxism PHD Students,” Xinhua, March 29, 2014.

49. Baogang He, “China’s Responses to the Arab Uprisings,” in Democracy and Reform in the Middle East and Asia: Social Protest and Authoritarian Rule after the Arab Spring, ed. Amin Saikal and Amitav Acharya (London: I. B. Tauris, 2013), 162.

50. Sun 2016, 137; Li Xiao and Li Junjiu, “Meiguo de Baquan Diwei Pinggu Yu Xinxing Daguo de Yingdui,” Shijie Jingji Yu Zhengzhi, no. 1: 2014, 141.

51. Zhang Simao, “Qianxi Zhongmei Renquan Guan de Fenqi jiqi Qishi,” Xiandai Jiaoji, no. 6 (2016): 22.

52. Shen 2017, 41.

53. PRC State Council, “Progress in China’s Human Rights in 2014,” June 8, 2015.

54. Zhang Simao 2016, 22.

55. Zhongwen Wang, “Daguo Zhanlüe: Guoji Zhanlüe Tanjiu Yu Sikao,” Financial Times, May 6, 2016.

56. Liu Jianfei 2016, 13, 15.

57. Liu Jianfei 2016, 15.

58. Wang and Lieberthal 2012, 11.

59. “Daguo Zhanlüe” 2016.

60. Wang and Lieberthal 2012, 12.

61. National Endowment for Democracy, “China (Xinjiang/East Turkistan) 2015.”

62. Wang and Lieberthal 2012, 12.

63. Chris Arnold, “Dalai Lama Meets With President Obama; China Objects,” NPR, June 15, 2016.

64. Patricia M. Thornton, “Looking East: China’s Jasmine Revolution in Comparative Perspective,” in Non-Western Encounters with Democratization, ed. Christopher K. Harst and Jan van der Lamont (London: Routledge, 2015), 144.

65. Edward Wong and Jonathan Ansfield, “Beijing Blames Foreigners for Its Fears of Unrest,” New York Times, May 8, 2011.

66. Baogang 2013, 166.