Power Struggle, it would not be wrong to say, is one of the oldest struggles in the world. It has continued through centuries, however the tactics might have been changed. But the end result, the desire is always the same, and that is to be on the apex position.
This desire however has meant that the world has suffered immensely by wars, battles, diplomacy, politically motivated murders and killing. And things have yet to change for the better. WE still live in a world where the race to grab the top position continues and the lies and deceits that surround such a campaign are ever so strong.
The understanding of the Global Relations and World politics, therefore, can only be gained through the understanding of these relationships, termed as International Relations. It is this study that can yield as an understanding of how and why states do what they do and why the decisions they make are made.
If there is one thing that the study of Political Science teaches us, is that there is always a background story to any decision in the Political Sphere. And the understanding of this background is fundamental in knowing how the world functions. Internal Politics and its relationships are a complex matter and require a deep understanding of history and that understanding requires a Global Perspective of states and their visions and their relationships with other states.
One of such states whose relationships require a Historical understanding is the People Republic of China and United States of America. Both of these states are completely different from each other in every sense; let it be Political Systems, Cultural and Religious Belief, Geographical Context, etc. And these differences only go on to add to the complexity of the two nations.
Mao Zedong, the Founder of the Peoples Republic of China, defined Politics as, "Politics is a war without bloodshed, and war is Politics with Bloodshed." Considering this statement, it won't be wrong to say that the United States of America and the Peoples Republic of China have waged many a bloodless wars on each other since its inception.
China, christened as the Peoples Republic of China, came into being on the 1st October 1949, and slowly transitioned towards Socialism, a system in which there is no concept of Private Property and is a transitional stage between Capitalism and Communism (Merriam Webster, n.d.). But the recognition of China as a state and the opening of diplomatic relationships with China didn't start until the 1970s when President Nixon finally visited the state. The main reason for this delay was the differences in the Political Ideology and this led to a number of misunderstandings and lack of trust between the two states (BBC News, 1999).
The later exchanges between the two nations, with the visit of Bill Clinton to Beijing, and the visit of Deng Xiaoping to America, can both be analyzed and concluded as public trust gaining and image building stunts, with the campaign of creating a softer image of the two nations in the other state.
President Clinton, however, and the market knew the potential that China had as a developing market and thus the struggle for getting a share for that market has slowly and gradually meant an interest in China, driven purely from the Economic point-of-view.
The lack of understanding between the two nations can even be adhered to the position that USA has long taken against other Socialist States. These states include Cuba as well as Soviet Union, with whom the Cold War reached momentous height of hostility.
There is a common thread however in all International Relations that have not been discussed so far, and it is under that thread that the relationships of the two states would be analyzed. The theme of National Interest is one of the most basic and fundamental in defining how would the two nations interact with each other, and it is this common thread that can be equally significant in predicating the course of how the future relations would be like.
It is in this perspective only that an understanding of the present day relationship between the two states can be analyzed. In the Article, "U.S. -- China Relations: Is a future confrontation looming," the theme of National Interest is predominantly visible and defines the entire base of the conflict that exists today between the U.S.A. And China.
Some of the main regions of disputes that exist between the U.S.A. And China include the issue of Iran, Economic Stability, Human Rights, and the growing influence of China in the Middle Eastern and other developing nations.
If the key to understanding relationships is National Interest and Economics, then conflict on all of these issues is justified. Relations with Iran are in the National Interest of China since Iran is one of the biggest importers of crude Oil to China currently, a list which even includes Saudia Arabia. The import to China today is even more than that being done to the U.S.A., thus greatly changing the balance of Power in the World. This has meant that China's policy and his ideologies have a power to impact the Global relationships.
However, the main reason for confrontation between the two nations has been the recent impact of Recession on Economy. The U.S.A. has been demanded of China to change its exchange rate, since the low exchange rate of China has meant that today it is one of the biggest exporter and it share in many of the markets in both European and Asia is consistently increasing (Prasad, 2009).
A comparison of the two visits by the two Presidents, Bill Clinton and Barack Obama, can also be attributed to this change of the Global Power Structure. The first visit took place at a time when China was still trying to get on the good side of the United States, which for a long time had contained the nation. There were many perspectives out there at that time that would have greatly benefited a still developing China. Trade and Cultural and Diplomatic ties relaxation were all on the agenda and thus it was important to open up the doors of a nation that for too long has been perceived in the West in the most negative manner (Junbo, 2011).
Clinton, throughout his visit, interacted with the locals, from university students to farmers and the major reason for these interaction being allowed by the Chinese Government have been attributed to highlight the market that China can provide for the U.S.A. And vice versa. The visit, while surely was enough to raise a few eyebrows from the more conservative people, created a new image for China and opened many doors, which China had hoped for from the beginning (Broder, 1998).
The visit of Obama took place at a time when the Political air and the overall Power Balance had changed dramatically and now favored China more. It was a point in history when the U.S.A. needed China more as compared to the other way round. And this was much clear not only to the Chinese Government, but also to the world.
There were huge differences between the two visits! The Obama visit was hardly highlighted in the Chinese media, and little was done to make interactions possible between the locals and the President. This much was expected and little or no progress was made on any of the items that President Obama had on his agenda.
The message that China sent out from this visit to the world was loud and clear, firstly that China is a force to be reckoned with, who refuses to bow down to any pressure from the outside. This was made clear on issues of Iran, North Korea and the nuclear race, with China unwilling to budge from the approach that it has always taken in this regard, that of resolving the issue through dialogue (Emma Graham-Harrison, 2009).
Secondly, on the issue of Global Warming and China being one of the biggest contributors of Green house gases, China's response was again lukewarm. Plans were discussed but no concrete strategy was presented in the media, which again indicates that little solution oriented discussion took place.
Another point of interest is the language that was used during the Press Conference by the two leaders. The criticism by the American President throughout this visit was much calculated and measure and ensured that no strong comments were given out that could result in sabotaging the deal between the two nations (Emma Graham-Harrison, 2009).
Another event that took place after this visit and helps in understanding further the complexity of this relation is the visit of the Chinese Premier to the United States of America in 2011. The visit could be called as orchestrated to make China appear as the savior of a failing economy. This was done by Chinese Premier Visit to an auto parts factory owned by Chinese and even a school that teaches Chinese Language as part of…