Joesph Biden and Xi Jinping in Beijing, August 2011
How Hwee Young / Reuters

It is no secret that the U.S.-Chinese relationship has entered dangerous and unstable territory. Chinese President Xi Jinping, recently elevated by the Sixth Party Plenum to the apex of socialist greatness (alongside Mao Zedong), sees the world in a turbulent state “unprecedented in the past century.” The East, in his view, is rising, whereas the West is in decline; China, Xi said, has “time and momentum on its side.” To take advantage of this favorable correlation of forces, he set aside the “hide and bide” caution of former Chinese leader Deng Xiaoping in favor of a far more

Finish reading this article for free.

Enter your email and we'll send a paywall-free link directly to your inbox.

In addition to your unlocked article, you will receive our flagship weekly newsletter Foreign Affairs This Week, as well as occasional updates and offers from Foreign Affairs. You can unsubscribe at any time. For more information, visit our user agreement and privacy policy.


Get unlimited access to all Foreign Affairs. Subscribe now.

Are you already a subscriber? Sign in.