posted on Sep, 7 2005 @ 09:18 PM
China and the United States are playing a game in which both try to gain as much influence and resources as possible, without crossing the line and
triggering a more direct confrontation. It's almost like a colder cold war. No proxy wars, and not as much overtly publicized economic or
resource competition, but intense competition nonetheless.
Time and time again, China and the U.S. find themselves wanting the same things in different ways. Energy, territory, political decision making power,
political influence...you name it. One maneuvers in such a way that they succeed in getting it, and the other tries to do the same until they see that
the two options before them are 1) let them win this time, or 2) trigger a conflict with dire consequences to both. One or the other chooses option
#1, and waits until the next opportunity presents itself. This ranges from things like Taiwanese laws being supported or opposed, trade deals being
made or successfully blocked, arms sales resuming or being stopped, etc. They play this game because they know that war will bring an end to their
expanding power and wealth. So, while they may indeed be on a collision course, it has been an extremely protracted collision course, and will
probably continue to be.
Future examples of this game might include, for example, China finally demanding unequivocal reunification with Taiwan. The U.S. would play up it's
treaty obligations, and make ready to defend Taiwan if necessary. Either China or the U.S. would eventually blink. China would come back to the table,
or hold off, etc. or the U.S. would find some way to abandon Taiwan while still saving face to the rest of the world. The game goes on.
Eventually however, if not over Taiwan, then over something else, the chess pieces will all be used up, and the bargaining chips will be depleted. If,
by that time, a way to bring peace to the world (I have faith in humanity, but I'm not holding my breath) has not been found, it will be a choice of
dominance or subservience. Fight or flight. Either one of them will blink - and both are too prideful to do so, in my opinion - or we will have WW3.
Or WWL (World War Last), if we're not careful.
This game will likely go on for many decades longer, though. I could be wrong but I don't think Iran would be reason enough to throw the chess board
up in anger and start a fist fight. Oil will be irrelevant in the mid to long term, and both China and the U.S. know that in the end they will gain
more strategic and economic power by staying in the game as long as they can, even if it means sharing the world's dwindling oil supply and suffering
the temporary shock of the energy change-over along with everyone else.