Containing China Is A Fool's Errand. Yet Obama's Deal with Indonesian Thugs Is Aimed at Exactly That
Yesterday’s announcement by the Obama administration that it is resuming military ties with the mass-murdering war criminals of Indonesia’s special forces ought to give us pause. Because the new relationship with Kopassus, the Indonesian thugs, has little or nothing to do with concrete U.S. interests in Indonesia – do we have any, anyway? – and everything to do with building a Great Wall around China.
The simple fact is that as China grows stronger, it will emerge as the hegemonic force in East Asia, and there’s not much that the cash-strapped, declining power of America can do about that. Far better than to engage in misguided efforts to “contain” China, the United States ought to try to figure out what steps it can take to encourage China to loosen its internal system of political authoritarianism.