Frenemies: the Possibility of Military Conflict Between China and the United States

After financial crisis of 2007-2009, the traditional superpowers such as the United States, the UK, France, etc. are now still stagnant in the recovery(Jacques, 2012). Their economies are plunging deeper in debt, financial systems remain fragile and visible economic growth has not yet resumed. However, on the other side of the world, the rising China tells a very different story.

The reform and opening policy, which began in 1979 and accelerated since the 1990s(Steinfeld, 2010), has truly invigorated China. China has experienced rapid economic growth even during the global financial crisis. According to the data provided by the World Bank in 2013, China’s GDP growth has been increasing by about 10% annually for the past twenty years. While referring to the report of Goldman Sachs in 2008, China will overtake America in 2027. Thus, in terms of national economy, China has realized tremendous achievements. The US also experienced such remarkable progress in the last two centuries when it accelerated its economic development during the two industrial revolutions and survived the Great Depression. As the largest economy, America owns the dominant power in international society up till now. Since China's economy is very likely to surpass America's economy in the future, no wonder Americans are concerned that China will replace the US as "hyper-power" and reshape the world order as what they have done to Europe in the 20th century.

Should Americans fire the first shot in order to forestall China before such nightmare of American happens? This essay is going to focus on the root of the conflict - the national interest, and analyze the possibility of military conflicts between the US and China.

The concept of national interest to different countries varies from each other. In different periods of time, governments pay attention to protect different aspects of   their core interests. According to Deng Xiaoping's reform and opening policy, China is still in the...