How a Great Power Falls Apart
Decline Is Invisible From the Inside
The major events of 1983 in East Asian politics and economics can be looked at from three broad vantage points or planes of abstraction. At the most general level one sees, rather like the movements of tectonic plates on the earth's surface, a slight shift in the center of gravity of U.S. foreign policy from Europe toward Asia. In large part this shift is prompted by a growing realization among the leaders of the United States and Japan that their nations will, for the indefinite future, be paramount in the fundamental sciences and their practical offshoots in microelectronics, biotechnology, fine ceramics, and other new areas of technical development, and that Western Europe will trail in most of these fields and the Soviet Union simply be left behind. The fact that the American President met with the prime minister of Japan three times during 1983 underscores this trend, as did the President's statement in Tokyo in November that "No relationship between any two countries is more important to world peace and prosperity than the relationship between the United States and Japan."
The next level one can observe in East Asian politics is a shift in the center of gravity from communist to non-communist countries. Several developments punctuated this trend. Japan became involved for the first time in the issue of intermediate-range nuclear forces (INF)-if not in the negotiations themselves. Coincidentally, the Soviet Union has become increasingly concerned with the potential military challenge of Japan, above all with its high technological capability-a concern reflected in the Soviet Union's deployments in East Asia regardless of their impact on progress toward a Sino-Soviet reconciliation. There is also the whole cluster of issues surrounding American attempts (private and official) to understand and respond intelligently to the economic competition coming from the East Asian capitalist developmental states (Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, Singapore, Hong Kong and Malaysia).
Finally, the People's Republic of China no longer looms very significantly in American strategic consciousness. No one is much interested in the "China card" and, even if there were one to play, no one thinks that it would have much of an effect on the Soviet Union. China continues to influence the atmospherics of international politics, particularly through what some have called its "gong-banging" style of diplomacy. This consists of deliberately involving its highest leaders in relatively trivial matters, ranging from political asylum for a defecting tennis player, or flights by Pan American Airways to Taiwan, or the textile trade, and then pressuring other countries for concessions in order not to cause these leaders to "lose face." American politicians also apparently continue to believe in the miraculous power of televised pictures of themselves in Beijing to motivate election-year voters (hence a presidential visit is scheduled for early 1984), but China's actual influence on serious events has been more realistically assessed. Meanwhile, the Chinese continue to transmit highly contradictory and even confusing signals into which some Western specialists dutifully read a range of consistent policies, omitting the most plausible interpretation-namely, that such signals may indicate the depth of internal Chinese political disarray.
The third level on which one can discuss this year's East Asian politics is the raw data of events. 1983 saw many chickens coming home to roost-colonial legacies, terrorist incidents, political weakness amid electoral strength, and the well-known consequences of authoritarian rule used for no other purpose than to preserve the reign of a single leader, family, or party.
Among the chickens, we find Sino-British negotiations to turn the world's third largest financial center, Hong Kong, over to the management of the Chinese Communists; the political desert left by 11 years of martial law in the Philippines, made fully manifest by the brutal and senseless killing of Benigno Aquino; and the problems of "red aristocracy" both in China, where a party rectification campaign was begun, and in North Korea, where a succession via lineal descent is being prepared. Terrorism occurred as a part of ethnic conflict in Sri Lanka; as the probably inadvertent but nonetheless inexcusable act of a superpower in the Soviets' shooting down of Korean Air Lines flight 007, killing 269 unarmed civilians; and as a substitute for war in the North Korean bombing in Burma of the governmental leaders of the Republic of Korea. This last use of terrorism is potentially more threatening to world peace even than the attacks on Americans, Frenchmen, and Israelis in Lebanon. In the realm of domestic politics, Japan's dynamic new prime minister, Yasuhiro Nakasone, did his best to overcome his political weakness in what is otherwise a dominant political party. Nakasone's domestic problems were made manifest, although they did not begin, when his sponsor and the most powerful figure in his party, former Prime Minister Kakuei Tanaka, was convicted of bribery in the Lockheed case.
It all added up to another Asian "year of living dangerously," to borrow the name the late President Sukarno, a sort of Indonesian Robespierre who liked to invent new terms and calendars for his revolution, gave to the year immediately preceding his own downfall. Let us therefore begin by looking more closely at the most important country in the region, Japan.
Until quite recently the issue of the military security of the northeast Asian non-communist nations was one of the most boringly repetitious subjects in international politics. Year in and year out the same play was performed: the Americans asked the Japanese to give up their "free ride" on defense; the Japanese replied that their constitution, their nuclear allergy, and their domestic politics prevented them from doing so; the South Koreans tried to leverage their own front-line position to obtain more economic aid from Japan; and a Grecian chorus from the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), intermittently joined by Beijing, intoned a Cassandra-like lament about the dangers of "revived Japanese militarism." During 1983 this old, well-established scenario began to change in several interesting ways. It has not yet happened, but it became at least possible that an American-Japanese-South Korean entente will confront the Soviet Union and replace the Sino-Soviet dispute as the most important security configuration in East Asia.
Up to 1983 the Japanese were unalterably committed to doing only the minimum in terms of defense expenditures and planning necessary to maintain friendly relations with the United States. Until very recently the informed Japanese public regarded the U.S. assessment of the Soviet military threat in Asia as flawed and alarmist. According to the Japanese, Soviet military modernization was aimed at China instead of the non-communist nations. And even if Soviet might were to be directed toward Japan, the Soviets were thought to be hobbled by their unfavorable geostrategic position: their ice-bound ports, umbilical cord across the Sea of Okhotsk from Vladivostok to Petropavlovsk, choke points in the Sea of Japan, and deficient amphibious capacity. Moreover, it was argued, the Americans themselves changed their policies toward the Soviet Union frequently and without prior consultation with or regard for Japan. One example that still rankles concerns the sanctions against the Soviet Union after the Afghan and Polish crises, which Japan agreed to join. However, when the Americans were unable to deliver European cooperation, they lifted the sanctions unilaterally after the Europeans had already taken advantage of Japan's withdrawal from joint ventures with the U.S.S.R.
It is equally true that the Japanese recognize the economic advantages to them of the one-way Japanese-American Security Treaty, which allows Japan to devote only 1.6 percent of GNP (gross national product) to defense expenditures (on the basis of NATO accounting methods), while Germany spends 3.4 percent (4.3 percent if aid to West Berlin is added), France 4.1 percent, Britain 5.3 percent, and the United States 6.6 percent. The United States is spending twice as much on military research and development as the whole Japanese defense budget, partly in order to defend Japan and its access to Persian Gulf oil, while simultaneously trying to deal with a bilateral trade deficit with Japan in the range of $20 billion.
During 1983 the Japanese position on these issues began to change for various significant reasons. First, the Andropov proposal of December 1982 to restrict INF numbers in Europe to exactly the level of French and British strategic systems was coupled, in January 1983, with reports that the Soviet Union was prepared to transfer some of its SS-20s from Europe to Asia (where the Soviets have already deployed 108 SS-20s). Second, there was growing evidence that the Soviet Union's presence in Afghanistan and Indochina is based on long-range strategic calculations that have little to do with its public defense of its activities in terms of treaty commitments or the Sino-Soviet dispute. And third, the Japanese became alarmed by the stationing of Tu-22M "Backfire" medium-range supersonic bombers on the coast opposite Sakhalin and their repeated intrusions into Japanese air space, and by the Soviets' remilitarization of the southern Kuriles, including their building of a military base on one of the Habomai islands, only 4.5 miles from the eastern tip of Hokkaido. In this changed strategic context, some Japanese leaders also recognized that the weight of their economy in global production, trade friction with the United States, the military relevance of their technological achievements, and the asymmetries in Japanese and American dependence on Persian Gulf petroleum would sooner or later require a new division of labor between the two allies to achieve common security goals.
On October 12, 1982, Japanese Prime Minister Zenko Suzuki announced his resignation and six weeks later, after futile intra-party talks to name a successor and a bruising party primary election, Yasuhiro Nakasone replaced him. Nakasone was not a popular choice in Japan, and he was named to the job because virtually no one else was available. Despite its dominance within the ruling party, the Tanaka faction cannot name one of its own leaders because of Tanaka's troubles with the law; the Suzuki faction had already named the previous two prime ministers (Suzuki and Masayoshi Ohira) in alliance with the Tanaka faction; and the factions opposed to Tanaka were neither strong enough to name one of their own leaders nor willing to cooperate with any faction also receiving backing from Tanaka. Thus the Nakasone faction, although only the fourth strongest of the six factions that govern Japan's Liberal Democratic Party, came to power by default. Nonetheless, even though the Japanese press derided him as a "political weathervane," Nakasone had been consistent on one issue since 1951, when as a young politician he sent a memorial on U.S. occupation policy to General MacArthur: the need for Japan to contribute militarily to the defense of the free world. On taking office Nakasone remarked that Japan's defense efforts had been "carried out on the cheap."
In mid-January 1983, Nakasone began to translate his words into actions by becoming the first Japanese prime minister ever to visit Seoul, Korea, in an official capacity. There he decisively resolved the two-year hiatus in Japanese-Korean talks over aid, agreeing to supply $4 billion over the next seven years, and soothed Korean irritation over slights contained in Japanese history textbooks. The Americans had good reason to welcome Nakasone's accession to power on this score alone, since they had long been worried about the tensions between Seoul and Tokyo.
Later that month, Nakasone made headlines in Washington by forthrightly stating that in times of crisis Japan must be prepared to take "complete and full control of the straits commanding the approach to Moscow's Far Eastern naval bases." This objective goes well beyond Suzuki's earlier promise to patrol the sea lanes for a thousand miles east and south of Tokyo. Only four months earlier, in September 1982, the United States and Japan agreed to begin basing U.S. F-16 aircraft at Misawa Air Base in northern Honshu to help counter the Soviets' Far Eastern buildup. In Washington, Nakasone also agreed to transfer Japanese technology of potential military relevance to the United States and undertook important new measures to relieve the trade friction with the United States.
Prime Minister Nakasone faces many domestic difficulties with his new defense policies. The Japanese public is still weighing its concern over the Soviet buildup versus its concern that once domestic rearmament has begun, it will be very difficult to contain or stop. Nothing seems to have done more to clarify Japanese minds on this score, at least in the short run, than the shooting down of the Korean airliner in the Sea of Japan. Polls taken in the wake of the disaster showed that 91.6 percent of the public felt that Soviet military force was a threat to Japan and 46.3 percent believed that Japan was not making an adequate effort in its own defense. Still, greater Japanese defense spending is constrained by severe Japanese budget deficits and by a strong popular distaste for revising Japan's war-renouncing constitution or for modifying the country's three non-nuclear principles (no manufacture, possession, or entry into Japan of nuclear weapons). The third of these principles has no doubt been quietly breached by U.S. naval vessels some time ago, but its public abrogation will be required if there are to be negotiations to limit nuclear weapons in East Asia, in which a full accounting will have to be made of the numbers of such weapons deployed in the area.
Perhaps the greatest reason for skepticism concerning Nakasone's new verbal commitments is that Japan has no established mechanism for crisis management, no mechanism for a wartime leadership structure, no mechanism for joint operations of Japan's three services, no mechanism for combined operations with the United States, and no plans for the fulfillment of military objectives as distinct from the mere purchase of military hardware. In June, Admiral Robert Long, U.S. commander in the Pacific, said that he regarded the Japan-U.S. relationship as critical to the maintenance of peace and security in his area (whereas a security relationship with China was "essentially nonexistent"), but it has to be added that the relationship is as yet nowhere near being ready to sustain any kind of real test.
Nakasone's willingness to begin to address these cardinal issues made him very popular in Washington and influenced favorably the range of equally serious problems concerning Japanese-American economic competition. The pressure for the United States to retaliate against Japan with protectionist measures, reciprocity legislation, or domestic-content laws relaxed noticeably. Both sides became more concerned about solving or containing their economic disputes instead of using them as scapegoats for domestic difficulties. Nonetheless, there were setbacks. American unions and Japanese farmers kept up their pressure to blame the other side for threats to their excessive wages or their official protection from competition-and politicians naturally found it impossible to be even slightly candid on either of these subjects.
Even so, until the Japanese elections at the end of the year, both sides appeared better poised politically than in the recent past to come to agreements and preserve what has become by far the most economically profitable relationship between any two countries that has ever existed. On Christmas Day, 1982, prior to his first visit to Washington, Prime Minister Nakasone announced the reduction or elimination of tariffs on some 315 products and ordered simplified Japanese customs and product certification procedures concerning imported goods. This last measure of "market opening" in Japan was at least a decade overdue, but Nakasone's leadership on the issue was still a welcome sign of rationality in the alliance.
During 1983 a special "Ron and Yasu" relationship was said to have come into being and to have led to several important cases of mutual assistance in moving toward common goals. In April, President Reagan refused to apply tax penalties to American purchasers of Japanese machine-tools despite the Houdaille Company's having made a nearly airtight case that the Japanese industry was a beneficiary of Japanese governmental support and promotion. It seems that the President acted because of Nakasone's important initiatives toward Korea and to help him manage the forthcoming election in June for the upper house of the Japanese Diet. Similarly, at the Williamsburg Summit of the leaders of the seven advanced industrial democracies in May, Nakasone came out strongly in support of the American deployment of Euromissiles if the Soviet Union refused to negotiate a reduction of its arms-the first time that a postwar Japanese leader ever became involved in substantive arms control matters. In return, Reagan managed to line up the other five leaders (of West Germany, Britain, France, Canada, and Italy) to rule out a Soviet relocation of SS-20s to Asia in any negotiated agreement.
By November Nakasone needed Reagan's help to overcome the political fallout from Tanaka's conviction on October 12 and to prepare the groundwork for Japanese general elections. Similarly, Reagan needed Nakasone's efforts to show progress on the trade friction issue, particularly to vindicate Reagan's antiprotectionist stance and to counter former Vice President Mondale's promises of anti-Japanese measures to the AFL-CIO. By inviting Reagan to Japan from November 9 to 12, Nakasone hoped to divert Japanese voter attention from the Tanaka debacle, as he also did with the visits of West German Chancellor Helmut Kohl at the beginning of November and of Chinese Party General Secretary Hu Yaobang at the end of that month.
During this visit Nakasone unveiled the fourth package of market opening measures since 1982. This set of policies is much the most important of the four since it goes beyond merely opening the Japanese market and involves active stimulation of the domestic economy and the promotion of imports. When and if the Diet gives its approval, the Japanese government will cut tariffs on 40 hitherto protected items, remove all tariffs on semiconductors so long as the United States does the same, advance by a year tariff cuts agreed to in the 1979 Tokyo Round of multilateral trade negotiations, provide Japanese Export-Import Bank loans for imports of manufactured goods, and cut income and other taxes by about $5.2 billion. The Japanese Minister of Finance also promised measures to try to raise the value of the yen by stimulating demand for it. The Japanese are not yet prepared totally to internationalize their financial system, but they will permit new kinds of international transactions, such as allowing more foreign importers of Japanese goods to pay in yen. When implemented, these steps should at least reduce if not eliminate the price advantage enjoyed by Japanese goods in foreign markets.
Since approximately 1980, when the Foreign Exchange and Foreign Trade Control Law of 1949 was rewritten, Japan has made a good faith effort to open its domestic economy to the world. It is today probably more sinned against than sinning in terms of trade barriers. But this effort came so late in the postwar era and was so obviously the result of foreign pressure rather than domestic initiative that its true scope and depth have been unappreciated. Nonetheless, the problem of whether foreign competition in the Japanese domestic market is even possible has been largely resolved: foreigners can now at least try to sell most of their products in Japan. But the matter does not end there. Maintaining a free international commercial system still faces the problems of the cartelization of trade-quotas, orderly marketing agreements, trigger prices, and so forth-and of national "industrial policies," meaning government-business relationships in countries such as Japan that are more conducive to the growth of productivity, savings, and the orderly change of industrial structure than in most of Japan's trading partners.
In the area of cartels, the November Japanese-American agreements made the problem worse, not better. In what the press called the "cows for cars" deal, Reagan and Nakasone obtained temporary advantages for American automobile manufacturers and Japanese farmers but at the expense of both of their countries' consumers. Japan agreed to extend for a fourth year its "voluntary" curbs on auto exports to America, while raising the quota from 1.68 million to 1.85 million vehicles. In return, the Americans acquiesced in a little more Japanese stonewalling on the issue of imports of beef and oranges. Japan's Ministry of International Trade and Industry (MITI) will now have to assign new export quotas to Japanese automobile manufacturers, a problem that will be made more difficult by General Motors' announced plans to import 190,000 subcompacts from Isuzu and Suzuki next year. Isuzu's current quota is only 16,800 and Suzuki's zero. Moreover, when the proposed GM-Toyota joint venture goes through-that is, partly to manufacture in California and partly to import a small car-the whole quota system will presumably have to be rethought or scrapped.
Predictably enough, the United Auto Workers and Chrysler Chairman Lee A. Iacocca complained about these recent developments because the Japanese quota was raised somewhat and because it was "for one year only." The unions want outright protectionism through domestic-content legislation; and Chrysler, which has been importing Japanese cars under its own brand names since 1970, is irritated that GM intends to give it some competition on this front. But some other American complainants have a case. U.S. Trade Representative William E. Brock defended the fourth year of auto quotas against Japanese criticism by pointing out that "the auto industry has been a depressed industry in the United States for the last three years. Yet we have permitted a 22-percent import penetration by one country [Japan], 30 percent by imports overall. There are eight to ten depressed industries in Japan, but the import penetration is less than one percent in those industries-and we have a better product at a better price than you do in each of those industries."1 (Brock is thinking of such things as aluminum refining, petrochemicals, urea manufacturing, ferrosilicon, cardboard paper, ammonia, and phosphoric acid.)
Mr. Brock's observation involves Japanese industrial policy, a subject of abiding interest throughout the year to American politicians and industrial leaders alike. The Japanese government does not protect its depressed industries (i.e., attempt to save them unchanged), but it does authorize cartels, tax write-offs, and concessionary loans for them to scrap excess capacity and relocate workers in an orderly manner. In May, the Diet enacted MITI's latest instrument for dealing with this problem, the Structurally Recessed Industries Special Measures Law. During the year, MITI similarly launched new research consortia to promote the fine ceramics and biotechnology industries; and it saw to the enactment of a new law providing incentives for industrial relocation and the rational grouping of high technology industries (the so-called Technopolis Law of April 1983). It is Japan's capacity to conceive of and execute these types of measures in a nonpartisan way that constitutes the real défi Japonais to the Americans, much as the Europeans perceived an earlier défi Américain. Although the United States effectively held the line against protectionism during 1983, there was no sign of an American consensus on what to do about industrial policy, although it seems certain to be a hotly debated topic during the 1984 presidential election campaign.
These generally favorable trends in Japanese-American relations were dealt a potentially severe setback at the end of the year by the 16th postwar Japanese general election. The election was forced on Nakasone when all the Japanese opposition parties boycotted Diet proceedings for some 38 days in light of Tanaka's conviction and Nakasone's refusal to allow a vote on a resolution calling on Tanaka to resign. Nakasone was trapped. To put a resolution before the Diet censuring Tanaka would guarantee Nakasone's loss of Tanaka's support; yet by going to the polls six months before the term of the lower house is due to expire, he forfeited the prime minister's power to call an election at the most opportune time. Heavily pressured by the secretary general of the ruling party and a leader of Tanaka's faction to hold an election, which Tanaka knew that he, if not his colleagues, could win, Nakasone acquiesced.
The results were disastrous. The Liberal Democratic Party lost 34 seats in the 511-member House of Representatives, its worst loss in any postwar election. The party emerged with only 250 seats, less than a simple majority, and it continued to rule only by forming a coalition with an eight-member conservative party and by immediately adding to its roster nine conservative independents who had run without party endorsement. Among the nine were several convicted bribe-takers in the Lockheed case, who had resigned from the party at the time of their arrests in 1976. Tanaka himself was reelected by the biggest majority he had ever received in his 15 elections since 1947, and his faction remained by far the most powerful and cohesive in Japanese politics.
As the year ended, Nakasone was barely reelected as prime minister in a close Diet vote. It was certain that his power to lead the country had been gravely weakened and that he would face a severe challenge throughout 1984 from other conservative leaders who want to head the party. The press, which contributed as much as any institution to this situation, spoke of a likely "semi-paralysis" of Japanese politics for the immediate future. This would stall implementation of many promised Japanese changes of policy and would certainly strengthen the hands of foreign leaders who favor dealing with Japan through pressure rather than mutual accommodation.
Nakasone is the first postwar Japanese prime minister with a strong strategic sense of Japan's international political responsibilities, not just of its economic role, and his continuation or failure to continue in office will have an important effect on the Japanese public agenda for the rest of this century. Japan's peculiar postwar legacy-a nation not divided like Germany but depoliticized internationally, democratized, and directed like medieval Venice toward neomercantilist pursuits-remains very influential. Nakasone began a process of change, but his views are obviously ahead of those of the Japanese public. He or his successor must attend to this gap, as must the Americans. The alliance would be more secure if there were at least a few assistant secretaries in the American executive branch as familiar with Japanese government as there are numerous Japanese officials familiar with American government.2
In a recent conversation with a young scholar from the People's Republic of China, I said, apropos of various changes being implemented there, that we in America wished Deng Xiaoping a long life. "I don't," the scholar promptly replied, "because the future of people like me cannot depend on the policies of a man who was born in 1904. We want to know what will happen after him." This remark goes to the heart of current Chinese domestic politics: the serious political problem of how to retire and replace the entrenched veterans of the Red Army who seem more concerned with hanging on to their privileges than with overcoming China's backwardness and poverty. This issue of the next transfer of power has been the secret agenda of Chinese politics since at least 1978.3 What is surprising is that it seemed even less near being resolved in 1983 than it had five years before.
Deng Xiaoping has been and apparently still is the leading reformer in China. But he has found it impossible to overcome the deep factionalism that affects the Chinese political and military elites and to promote a new generation of technically competent, educated leaders. The Twelfth Party Congress of September 1982 was supposed to be the occasion for Deng's much delayed breakthrough on this front. He did succeed at the Congress in downgrading the Politburo and advancing the Party's Secretariat, headed by Hu Yaobang and staffed by Deng's men. He also created a "Central Advisory Commission" as a prestigious forum to which he could promote old revolutionaries who were too senior to sack. Although Deng himself tried to set an example by moving to the new commission, such aged figures as Chen Yun, Xu Xiangqian, Ye Jianying (whose son is deputy governor of Guangdong Province), Peng Zhen, and Nie Rongzhen refused to budge. Deng could not force them out, and he appeared to be in a weaker political position after the Congress than before.
During June 1983, at the Sixth National People's Congress (NPC), Li Xiannian, age 74, and Peng Zhen, 81, emerged respectively as the new head of state and chairman of the People's Congress. The average age of the Politburo is 72.4 and of its Standing Committee 75. The average of the ages of the chairman and the four vice chairmen of the newly created Central Military Commission is 80. A particularly acute problem has been to eliminate over-age and unqualified leaders of the armed forces and, simultaneously, to curtail their rights, as army veterans, to retire into choice managerial posts in industry regardless of their abilities. To try to deal with this, Deng sits as chairman of both the Party's and the state's military commissions. The Beijing China Daily of June 21, 1983, said that the NPC session showed "the new national concern to lower the average age of state leaders," but this concern was neither new nor amenable to any apparent solution other than continued factional and personal infighting. Thus President Reagan, as he meets with Chinese leaders, can look forward to being one of the younger men in the room.
During October 1983, the Second Plenum of the Twelfth Chinese Communist Party Central Committee gave the go-ahead for a party rectification campaign (a purge, if it succeeds). This is supposed finally to produce Deng's new, "pragmatic" leadership structure. However, the campaign-which is to build a "socialist spiritual civilization" and to culminate in a re-registration of all qualified Party members-is scheduled to last three years. And its first results suggested the fall not of leftists and ex-Maoists but of reformers-for example, the firing in November of Wang Ruoshui and Hu Jiwei, who were two leading whistle-blowers about Party failings for the Party newspaper, People's Daily.
Chinese spokesmen continue to maintain that the openings to the West and Japan, material incentives, and modernization remain the basic policies of the regime, but the trend of events has been otherwise. The main concerns seem instead to be warding off the danger of "poisoning by bourgeois ideas" from abroad, checking the peasants' enthusiasm for the degree of decollectivization thus far allowed, and beating back any and all challenges to the redundancy of the Communist Party. A new constitution for the People's Republic, the fourth, was adopted in December 1982. It guarantees due process in legal proceedings and freedom of religion, among other things. But the following August the government suspended the penal code and began systematically rounding up and shooting alleged felons in the big cities. Two Chinese priests who had been released in 1979 were sent back to jail because they apparently sought to establish new ties to the Vatican.
On the positive side, the Chinese government continued to enforce its draconian but probably unavoidable birth control program. (They are sufficiently sensitive about this and other rural practices, however, to have pressured Stanford University-which has an important collaborative project with China in high-energy physics-about a young doctoral candidate in anthropology who did field-work in a Chinese village. Stanford subsequently refused to grant him a Ph.D.)4 The Chinese have also announced plans to remodel Mao's mausoleum by installing statues of previously purged revolutionary leaders. This may afford future tourists a rare opportunity to see somebody-in this case, Mao-actually "turning over in his grave." But the main post-Mao reforms have clearly bogged down. This may be because bureaucratism, corruption, and abuse of power are too deeply entrenched, or because political compromises must be made with affected groups, or because the reforms have already served their purposes and are now inconvenient to the reformers, or because of a combination of all three.
On July 1, 1983, the party published the Selected Works of Deng Xiaoping as a basic study guide for the forthcoming rectification campaign. By November some 40 million copies (the approximate number of members of the Chinese Communist Party) were in print. This collection does not contain any articles earlier than 1975 and omits Deng's most famous remark: "Whether it is black or white, a cat is a good cat if it catches mice." More significantly, however, only three of its 374 pages are concerned with external affairs. This suggests that China's true preoccupations are internal-as has often been true in the past-and that the wellsprings of its foreign policy, save in cases of unmistakable threat, are domestic politics. Sino-American relations during 1983 seem illustrative.
The first half of the year saw contacts between Chinese and Americans at their worst point in a decade. Foreign analysts said that this was because of the Reagan Administration's support for Taiwan, a view that was vehemently endorsed in Beijing in March by House Speaker Thomas P. O'Neill. Among other things, the Chinese retaliated against U.S. insistence on a quota for textile imports by cutting off their imports of American agricultural products; they suspended cultural exchanges because the United States gave Hu Na, the defecting tennis player, political asylum; they restricted Pan American's overflights of Chinese territory because it resumed flights to Taiwan; they demanded that the United States and Japan stop allowing Taiwanese representatives in their countries to issue visas to Taiwan; and they protested when President Reagan interpreted the Sino-American communiqué of August 1982 to mean that China had agreed not to use force against Taiwan.
And then, in May 1983, Secretary of Commerce Malcolm Baldrige visited China and promised to clear up the bureaucratic muddle in Washington over high-technology exports, and suddenly his listeners seemed to forget about all the other issues. In rapid succession the United States and China agreed to a new textile quota; China resumed importing cotton and soybeans; American Motors concluded a joint venture with the Chinese to manufacture four-wheel-drive vehicles there; China granted offshore drilling rights to American oil companies; and Secretary of Defense Caspar Weinberger had a cordial meeting with Defense Minister Zhang Aiping about the three-year hiatus in talks concerning proposed arms sales to China. Premier Zhao Ziyang agreed to visit the United States in January 1984, and President Reagan said that he would like to visit China in April. It is, of course, entirely possible that another episode of Chinese "gong-banging" will scuttle these plans.
The current policy of the American government to try to sell arms and militarily relevant technology to the People's Republic is intensely controversial among informed observers. American officials seem most concerned to try to obtain guarantees that military technology will not be transferred to hostile or unstable governments, such as North Korea, but there are several other issues involved. In my view the basic policies of the democratic governments toward China should be to try to sustain and perhaps advance the tentative economic and social liberalization that the Chinese have been experimenting with since 1978. This would involve primarily engaging the mainland Chinese in a broad range of economic relationships, including the opening of our markets further to Chinese manufactured exports such as textiles. Nonmilitary commerce can have the effect in China of reinforcing the positions of managers and economic reformers who are trying to raise the productive levels of Chinese workers in order to meet international price and quality competition.
Arms sales have precisely the opposite effect. They reinforce the predominance of the Communist Party and emphasize the strategic and military concerns in the developing relationship. Unfortunately, U.S. policy in recent years has been directly contrary to the one suggested here. Nonetheless, the Chinese have shown no great readiness to purchase arms on American terms, and the issue is largely stillborn. Much more important than any hypothetical security relationship with China is the continuing education of thousands of Chinese students in Western universities, China's growing commercial ties with the Pacific Basin, and the stake that many Chinese have developed in the modernization of their country.
Sino-Soviet relations also thawed during the year. Trade doubled, athletic and cultural exchanges increased, and formal discussions on basic issues continued. The Chinese restricted themselves to an expression of "shock and regret" over the Korean airliner incident, and they abstained at the United Nations on the resolution deploring the Soviet attack. Soviet Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Kapitsa, who visited China in September, expressed his appreciation to the P.R.C. for these considerations. Apparently neither China nor the Soviet Union regards the Sino-Soviet dispute as being as important as it once was. Since its successful test in October 1982 of a submarine-launched ballistic missile, China feels less threatened by Soviet military power. It also has a vested interest in reducing its own military expenditures in order to concentrate on economic modernization, and it seems to have reassessed Soviet military activities in Asia as being directed primarily at the United States and its allies rather than at China. Similarly, the Soviet Union would like to see an improvement in its relations with China, but it is not prepared to make concessions on Indochina or Afghanistan for the sake of a hypothetical Chinese friendship. Thus the two sides find it convenient to be much more polite to each other than in the past and to continue talking.
However, one curious development beginning in late March in Mongolia raised the possibility of major Soviet concessions in the talks. The Mongols began to expel across the border into China residents and citizens of Chinese ancestry, and they did so with extreme brutality. The Chinese did not protest. It seems possible that the Soviets quietly agreed to remove some of their forces aimed at China from Mongolia and that Ulan Bator was reacting against this development. On the other hand, the Soviets themselves may have fomented the expulsions in order to create an incident that would justify keeping their forces in the country. Whatever the case, the Mongolian border incidents served to remind all observers that however painstaking and logical their analyses of Sino-Soviet relations, foreign commentary on this subject is based largely on speculation.
Chinese foreign policy on one issue displayed no public ambiguity at all. This is the future of Hong Kong. If what has been said publicly is accurate, it appears that a vast but avoidable tragedy for the 5.6 million people of Hong Kong is in the making. The Chinese and British, who are negotiating over what is to happen when the British leasehold on 89 percent of Hong Kong's territory expires in 1997, agreed in advance to keep their discussions secret. The British have abided by this gag rule, but the Chinese have gone public on their "non-negotiable positions" at every conceivable opportunity. It is possible that what has been divulged publicly about the talks is quite different from their actual substance. But these disclosures have scared the citizens of Hong Kong as badly as the conditions on the mainland that caused them to emigrate to Hong Kong in the first place.
It seems certain that the truly just solutions-self-determination for Hong Kong or an offer to buy the New Territories from China in return for British withdrawal and Hong Kong's independence-are not on the table. The Chinese of Hong Kong of course share a common traditional culture with the Chinese of the mainland, but their sociological, economic, and political heritage could not be more different. The Hong Kong Chinese fear that Mrs. Thatcher's government is "realistically" preparing a Zimbabwe-type rather than a Falklands-type solution for them, particularly since the British Nationality Act of 1982, which came into effect in January 1983, denies residency in the United Kingdom to Hong Kong citizens. The real issue, then, is what the Chinese Communists have in mind for them.
Mainland Chinese officials say that they intend to preserve Hong Kong as it is, under the self-government of its own residents and as an "autonomous region" of the P.R.C. Beijing draws attention to the fact that the new constitution of the P.R.C. provides for autonomous region status for both Hong Kong and Taiwan. Nonetheless, the people who are contemplating living under this new status cannot help recalling the fate of another autonomous region, Tibet, which despite a 400-year independent history and culture of its own, found itself summarily incorporated into the P.R.C. Similarly, although Beijing often says to Taiwan that after reunification it can keep its own army, it does everything in its current (to say nothing of future) power to prevent the sales of arms to that same army.
Hong Kong enjoys the second or third (in tandem with Singapore) highest per capita income in East Asia, exceeded only by Japan. This has been achieved on the basis of a form of capitalism that has not existed in Britain for a long time and that is officially anathema in China. The prosperity that this capitalism breeds rests on a confidence in and predictability of the future that the British understand but cannot influence and that the Chinese probably do not even understand. It is the undermining of this confidence that threatens to turn Hong Kong into another "party-run slum" (as the London Economist put it) long before the actual 1997 Chinese Communist takeover. Curiously, the Americans have so far said nothing about the issue, even though the United States is Hong Kong's number one trading partner and the largest foreign investor in the territory. It is understandable that we must give the British a chance to do what they can, but time is running short. China has already proclaimed that if no agreement with Britain has been reached by September 1984, it will unilaterally announce its own "policies and guidelines" for the takeover. The world can then begin to deal with a new collapsing economy and refugee flow.5
Whatever happens to Hong Kong will have a dramatic impact on Taiwan, where American foreign policy is unavoidably involved. But the current Taiwanese situation offers no cause for alarm. During 1983 the Republic of China was one of Asia's few authoritarian regimes that was making careful preparations for a peaceful political succession-and in a liberal direction. President Chiang Ching-kuo is 74 years old and in poor health. A successor must be found who is determined to preserve the roughly ten-to-one per capita income gap that now exists between the Chinese of Taiwan and the Chinese of the mainland. He must also be able to work with and preserve unity among the Kuomintang, the government bureaucrats, the military, the security organizations, the mainlanders, the born-in-Taiwan mainlanders, the indigenous Taiwanese, and the young and the old. In October the Taiwan government posted General Wang Sheng to Paraguay as ambassador. This has removed from the local scene the legendary strongman of ROC military politics, and seems to pave the way for the current front-runner, Premier Sun Yun-suan, a technocrat, to succeed smoothly to the presidency. The political skill shown in recent years by the Taiwanese in running their high-growth capitalist developmental state is, or should be, a model for the rest of East Asia and much of the Third World.
The violence and terrorist incidents that occurred in East Asia during 1983 might appear superficially similar to one another, but they varied greatly in terms of their causes and their political significance. (Large-scale conflict in Kampuchea and Afghanistan was nothing new: it has been going on continuously for five years in Indochina and four years in Afghanistan and has the same root cause: Soviet policy.) The Republic of Korea (ROK) was the hardest hit, but this signified not its domestic failures but its achievements. Terrorism in the Philippines signified precisely the opposite-the dismal failures of the Marcos government on virtually every score. In Sri Lanka the fighting between Tamils, who are mostly Hindu, and Sinhalese, who are mostly Buddhist, had its roots in ethnic differences between the two communities and reprisals for earlier terrorist attacks. The Korean instances are potentially the most threatening to regional and even global peace, but the Philippine outbreaks are likely to pose the greatest headaches for U.S. foreign policy. Both require further discussion.
Thirty years after the truce in the Korean War, the Republic of Korea has its problems, but compared with North Korea, it is one of the greatest success stories of modern times. South Korea is a newly industrialized nation, one that is preparing to host the International Monetary Fund in 1985, the Asian Games in 1986, and the Olympic Games in 1988. As the fifth richest country in Asia in per capita terms (after Japan, Hong Kong, Singapore, and Taiwan), it has a population of 39.3 million, a growth rate of 9.6 percent during the first half of 1983, and a total foreign trade during 1982 of around $45 billion. The ROK's chief problem is that its people give at best only passive support to their current ex-military leader, President Chun Doo Hwan.
North Korea, by contrast, has a population of 18.6 million; a 71-year-old dictator, Kim Il Sung, who is preparing to pass on his rule to his son, Kim Jong Il, rather in the manner of an eighteenth-century absolute monarch; and a military machine composed of a staggering 35 infantry divisions. The commander of the U.S. forces in Korea has characterized North Korea's specialized forces for irregular warfare, about 100,000 in number, as "the strongest in the world."
Beginning in 1982, the ROK undertook a new foreign policy, its so-called Nordpolitik, to try to build normal, mutually advantageous relations with the People's Republic of China and the U.S.S.R. Lee Bum Suk, the foreign minister, was the statesman who was leading this effort, and had achieved some degree of success, at least with the U.S.S.R. But perhaps the increasing global recognition and confidence of the government in Seoul also caused panic in the North, leading Pyongyang to launch a terrorist attack on the Chun cabinet. This attack came on October 9 in Rangoon. On the first stop of a planned 18-day tour to Burma, India, Sri Lanka, Australia, New Zealand and Brunei (which became independent of Britain at the end of 1983 and will soon join ASEAN), the Chun cabinet was laying a wreath at the Martyrs' Mausoleum in Rangoon. A bomb planted in the ceiling of the mausoleum exploded, killing four Burmans and 17 Koreans, including Lee Bum Suk, the director of the Economic Planning Board, the minister of commerce and industry, and the minister of energy and natural resources. The chairman of the ROK Joint Chiefs of Staff and the vice-minister of finance were seriously injured. President Chun and his wife escaped only because their automobile was delayed in traffic and the terrorists detonating the bomb apparently mistook the arrival of the car of the Korean ambassador, who was also killed, for that of the president. Chun immediately canceled the remainder of his trip and returned to Seoul to rebuild his government. It is a good thing he did so, since North Korean terrorists were subsequently found (and expelled) in Sri Lanka, apparently a fail-safe team in case the terrorists in Burma did not succeed in their mission.
It is strongly suspected in Seoul that had Chun himself also been killed, the North Koreans might have followed their attack with an all-out assault on the South. There is no question that North Korean agents carried out the bombing in Rangoon. On November 4, the Burmese government disclosed that three saboteurs were involved (one dead, the other two under arrest), and that they were a major and two captains in the North Korean army. An unexploded antipersonnel mine found on the site also came from North Korea. Rangoon has since broken relations with Pyongyang and ordered all North Korean diplomatic personnel out of the country.
North Korea also seems to have been responsible for the bombing of the U.S. cultural center in Taegu on September 22, suggesting that it has launched a campaign of terrorism against the ROK. The devices used in Taegu and Rangoon were more sophisticated than are normally available to non-state terrorists, and the Taegu bombing occurred during the convention of the American Society of Travel Agents, just as the Rangoon bombing occurred during the convention of the International Parliamentary Union. Interestingly enough, Soviet delegates had been invited to the IPU meeting, but they declined after the Korean airliner attack of September 1. Following the Rangoon incident, the North Koreans announced that if President Reagan visited Korea, "he won't leave alive."
The serious implications of the Rangoon incident were immediately apparent. Secretary of Defense Weinberger attended the funeral in Seoul for the killed cabinet officials-and also advised strongly against a reprisal by the ROK. Chun agreed, but he publicly promised retaliation for any future outrages (and on December 4 the South Koreans did sink a North Korean patrol boat). President Reagan's trip to Korea, following his state visit to Japan, took place amid heavy security but without incident. The President condemned the North Koreans for their obvious war preparations and their bombings, visited the demilitarized zone, and made temperate appeals for more democracy and freedom of opinion in the ROK. In more general terms, the Rangoon bombing seems to signify the unequivocal beginning of an era of state terrorism as a form of surrogate warfare. It is the first confirmed instance in recent times of a state attempting to disguise its use of force through the use of ostensibly non-state terrorists (although historians may in retrospect date the onset of this form of conflict from the attempted assassination of Pope John Paul in 1981).
In addition to the Rangoon incident, the ROK was shaken on September 1 when the Soviet Union shot down Korean Air Lines flight 007, killing 110 Koreans, 61 Americans, 28 Japanese, and 70 other nationals. Korean steadfastness in the face of these blows, including Seoul's determination to continue with its "open door" policy toward China and Russia, was praiseworthy. But the longer-range domestic problems within South Korea remain. Although the Korean airliner and Burma bombing disasters temporarily stilled domestic criticism of the Chun government for the first time since it was installed in 1979, the country cannot long delay progress in the political arena commensurate with its remarkable degrees of economic and social development.
In the Philippines, by contrast, the degree of political development is about on a par with its economic and social development: all three are lagging. At the close of 1983, the Philippines posed the strong possibility of a decaying authoritarian regime collapsing like Somoza's Nicaragua. What happens next could affect the largest American military bases of their kind outside the United States, the Subic Bay Naval Base and the Clark Air Force Base. Given the Soviet naval presence in Indochina and the American need to project power into the Indian Ocean, American access to these facilities is of clear strategic importance. As a former American colony and current ally, the Republic of the Philippines is also strongly identified with the United States in the minds of East and particularly Southeast Asians. The Filipino record on political stability, democratic rights, and economic progress thus cannot help but reflect to some degree on the United States.
Unfortunately, American lack of sensitivity about these matters during 1983 contributed to the tragedy that shook the Philippines-and ultimately forced President Reagan to cancel his proposed November visit to Manila, which was intended to be the first stop on a trip that originally included Indonesia and Thailand as well. This was the assassination at the Manila airport, on August 21, of former Senator Benigno S. Aquino, Jr., Marcos's longtime rival and the central figure in the moderate opposition. Almost certainly the act was done by airport security guards acting on the orders of higher military officials. This identification of those responsible for the killing has not yet been established by an impartial investigation, but it is believed to be true by virtually every politically sentient person in the Philippines, including many officials close to Marcos. Given the fact that Aquino was living in the United States before his return and that he all but predicted he would be assassinated, one wonders why the White House or the State Department did not receive him publicly or send a bodyguard or otherwise signal its interest and concern in his well-being. As matters stand now, the killing of Aquino has been a near-fatal blow to the credibility of an already deeply discredited regime.
President Ferdinand E. Marcos was democratically elected to office in 1965. He declared martial law in 1972, lifted it in 1981, but has continued to rule by decree. Since about 1978 the Philippines have been headed for serious economic and social trouble: during 1982 the republic had a current account deficit of $3.35 billion ($2.4 billion in 1981), a debt service ratio on the order of 25 percent, and a population growth rate of 2.4 percent (abetted by Catholic Church opposition to family planning). The Philippines have not shared in the general economic prosperity of most of non-communist East Asia, nor has the nation offered as favorable a climate for foreign investment as Malaysia or Singapore. A number of reasons account for this. First, the Philippine government has pursued an inwardly oriented strategy of economic development that stresses import substitution rather than the manufacture of products for export. Second, the economy has been mismanaged because competition to control it exists among Imelda Marcos, the president's wife and the "minister of human settlements"; technocrats such as Cesar Virata, minister of finance since 1971 and the current designated successor to Marcos in case he should retire or be incapacitated; and oligarchically organized private economic groups. Third, Marcos himself has used much of his influence to build up the military as a political base rather than paying attention to the balanced development of the whole country.
The only significant insurgencies against a non-communist government in East Asia still exist in the Philippines. One is the 11-year-old Muslim struggle in Mindanao led by the Moro National Liberation Front, which is now subsiding due to internal dissension. The other is that of the New People's Army, the military arm of the outlawed Communist Party of the Philippines, which showed new strength during 1983 in Mindanao and other parts of the country. Mindanao is the second largest island in the Philippines with a population of some 11 million; it is also one of the poorest and most backward areas in all of non-communist East Asia. Most American aid to the Philippines, which is negotiated and paid in return for leases on the Subic and Clark bases, has gone to Luzon, particularly to the area around the capital.
Before the Aquino killing, a new base agreement covering the years 1985-89 was smoothly and easily renewed with the Marcos government. Although base agreements are made with the government of the Philippines and not with any particular regime, many Filipinos do not make that distinction because of Marcos's repeated personal identification with the agreements. Unquestionably, they tend to identify the United States with Marcos as much as any single factor-and in the fall demonstrations there were many posters denouncing the "U.S.-Marcos regime." Yet the bases mean much to the Philippine economy, and the American leaseholds would probably survive a change in the government.
Marcos's problems became disasters in the wake of Aquino's assassination. As confidence in the future fell to nil, foreign currency poured out of the country. The Philippine peso was devalued twice during 1983 for a total loss in value of 28.6 percent; the International Monetary Fund's guidelines for a reconstruction of public finance collapsed (although the IMF authorized on December 14 a $100-million loan directly to the Philippine treasury); and Manila's largest foreign creditors gave it only a 90-day moratorium, expiring in January 1984, on the repayment of its debts. Most seriously, the middle classes of Manila openly demanded that Marcos resign. Beginning on September 16, anti-Marcos rallies were held twice weekly along Ayala Avenue, Manila's banking and financial center. The professional and educated classes were outraged not only by the government's official explanation of the Aquino assassination but also by the fact that a month later the police shot and killed ten demonstrators. In the eyes of moderate and non-communist citizens of Manila, the only people who could have profited from Aquino's death were General Fabian Ver, since 1981 chief of staff of the armed forces and Marcos's cousin, and Imelda Marcos, the president's wife. Both were thought to be positioning themselves to succeed Marcos, who is alleged to be in very poor health.
Almost anything could happen in the Philippines: civil war, the breakup of the country (on November 12 the Muslims of the Mindanao-Sulu region threatened to secede), communist insurgency, economic collapse, military coup d'état-or the persistence of the Marcos regime, propped up in one form or another by the military and by American aid. The preference of the middle-class protesters would be a Marcos resignation, the holding of fair congressional and presidential elections, and increased aid from the United States, even though there is as yet no well-known moderate contender for office to succeed Aquino.
In the two months after the Aquino assassination, the Reagan Administration confined itself to strong appeals for an impartial investigation (which only got under way at the end of the year); the cancellation of the Reagan visit was handled in low key and on the basis of alleged scheduling problems. By the end of the year, the U.S. Embassy in Manila was apparently exerting quiet pressure to ensure that the elections for a new Assembly, scheduled for May 1984, were held and freely conducted. Much will depend on whether this takes place, and Congress may play a role by delaying its approval of the 1983 base agreements. If these elections should turn out to be a sham, or if the results of the investigation should set off further protests, the United States may have no choice but to reassess its policies, including the possibility of withholding aid from Marcos, despite his threats to hold the bases hostage, and working out a new agreement on the bases with his successor. Whatever is done, American domestic political fallout is also likely as lack of foresight on the Philippines, going back for several administrations, comes home to roost.
It is regrettable that President Reagan had to cancel his scheduled meeting with the foreign ministers of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations in Jakarta. ASEAN is the first successful regional organization in East Asia, and with the notable exception of the Philippines, all of its members are making significant economic progress. The United States cooperates with ASEAN in its attempts to quarantine Vietnamese imperialism in Kampuchea and Laos, and it consults with ASEAN over measures to respond to the growing Soviet military presence in the area. Although Reagan was not able to go to Southeast Asia because of the Aquino killing, Japanese Prime Minister Nakasone visited the region in May and succeeded in quieting misgivings about "revived Japanese militarism." He was able to show that any Japanese military buildup will be in cooperation with, and not a substitute for, American military power in the Western Pacific and that, without any amphibious or airlift capability, Japanese forces are purely defensive. Nakasone's reassurances were, however, no substitute for hearing the American President reaffirm our continued presence, including the military side.
Another reason why the U.S. President needs to visit ASEAN is to help calm its dispute with the new Labor Party government of Australia, which was voted into office in March 1983. The Australian prime minister, Bob Hawke, campaigned in part on a platform of restoring humanitarian aid to Vietnam and cutting off aid to Indonesia because of the way it has run the former Portuguese colony of East Timor. This Australian stance infuriated the ASEAN nations, and the dispute became serious in October when Australia refused to continue cosponsoring the U.N. resolution calling for the withdrawal of all foreign troops from Kampuchea. America may need to mediate between Australia and ASEAN.
It would be pleasant if the "year of living dangerously" were to be followed by a "year of no significance," but this seems unlikely. Although the non-communist nations of East Asia are the most successful economically in the world today, their weaknesses in political institutionalization are notorious. Not a single nation bordering the Western Pacific, including Japan, has evolved a two-party system for alternating political leaders in power (Australia and New Zealand are of course South Pacific exceptions). Nonetheless, these nations' strategy of building political legitimacy on the basis of economic performance provides much higher levels of living and degrees of societal openness than in the Leninist command economies, and infinitely greater prospects for evolution in a democratic direction.
American policy toward the region, although displaying a deceptive and superficial competence, is based largely on premises that are a decade or more out of date. A majority of the senior governmental officials concerned with East Asia are specialists in Asian communism; and with some important exceptions, they all suffer to varying degrees from the tunnel vision that long immersion in communist affairs produces. The need for a regional or even global political-economy perspective is only beginning to be recognized.
The significant trends in Asia are not necessarily those revealed by crises and newspaper headlines. The trends that call for new weights and a greater balance in an overall policy for Asia and the Pacific are the emergence and unquestioned success of new forms of capitalism in non-communist East Asia, the magnetic pull that these new societies are exerting on mainland China, the determination of the Soviet Union to compensate for its economic backwardness by becoming a military power in the Pacific, and the centrality of the East Asian nations to any discussion of scientific and technological progress, energy supply, or international finance and commerce.
An American strategy for East Asia should give first priority to the opportunities and challenges posed by non-communist Asia. China and Chinese communism are, of course, important. But China's vision of the future of East Asia is unlikely to prove influential because capitalist East Asia has upstaged the old East-West debates and because China's version of communism is no longer a "model" for anyone, including many mainland Chinese. Friendly, "normal" relations should of course be maintained with the mainland, but China's strategic significance has paled in comparison with that of the arc stretching from Japan to Singapore, including Taiwan. There are few Americans left who are unaware of the challenge coming from the East Asian capitalist developmental states and even fewer unaffected by their influence. It is time that this challenge and intelligent responses to it take center stage in the nation's East Asian foreign policy.
1 Los Angeles Times, November 2, 1983.
4 See Stephen W. Mosher, Broken Earth: The Rural Chinese, New York: The Free Press, 1983.