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Журнальный клуб Интелрос » Сравнительная политика » №2, 2014

Pawel Voronin
A Comparative Analysis of Dispute Resolution Dynamics in Asia

The overarching theme of this essay is the question of China’s rise to prominence in the international community following the end of the Cold War and whether or not this rise will be peaceful. Growth in economic power and population numbers project that China will become the leading world power within several decades, regardless of the course its government takes. Historically, power transitions have been accompanied by military conflict as one power seeks to maintain its hegemony and the associated international system underpinning its rule while an emerging power seeks to carve out spheres of influence and change international institutions to suit its interests. This is the realist interpretation of international relations. In fact, realist scholars such as John Mearsheimer insist that China will try to push the US out of the Asia-Pacific region. While the US-China rivalry is about great power competition on a global scale, there is also the question of China’s rivalry with regional powers. To the north, it faces Russia, which is re-emerging from the crisis- riddled aftermath of the Cold War to the centre stage of international politics. To the South, India, the world’s most populous democracy is rising almost as dynamically as China. To the East and Southeast, China is facing a host of middle powers in Japan, Korea and Australia, as well as an increas ingly close-knit group in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN). As China grows stronger in the face of its neighbours, we could expect Beijing to become more expansionist.2 The PRC has invested heavily in military modernisation, acquiring capabilities to project force beyond the borders of China. Yet, in many territorial disputes, it has refrained from using force to achieve favourable outcomes against often much weaker neighbours. To the contrary, compromises were achieved in several of these disputes. This study seeks to examine why this occurred in some disputes but not others

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