Russian President Vladimir Putin with Chinese President Xi Jinping in Samarkand, Uzbekistan, September 2022
Sergey Bobylev / Sputnik / Reuters

Just 30 years after the end of the Cold War and 50 years after the U.S. opening to China, the United States’ two principal challengers seem to be on the march and dictating Washington’s foreign policy decisions. Russia defied many observers’ expectations by invading Ukraine, and it shows no sign of relenting nine months into its brutal campaign. Meanwhile, following a visit to Taiwan by U.S. Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi in August, China launched a spate of short-range conventional ballistic missiles—including, for the first time, over Taiwan—terminated its military dialogue with the United States, and

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.