An Ideological Contest in U.S.-China Relations? Assessing China’s Defense of Autocracy
Forthcoming, Security and US-China Relations: Differences, Dangers, and Dilemmas, eds. Avery Goldstein and Jacques deLisle
39 Pages Posted: 30 Jul 2019 Last revised: 18 May 2020
Date Written: July 26, 2019
China’s renewed authoritarianism and growing international influence have paralleled democratic erosion in new and established democracies alike. These twin developments have added an ideological valence to growing security and trade tensions in U.S.-China relations. Although there is scant evidence that the Chinese Communist Party is deliberately trying to spread autocracy or defeat democracy, China’s success and influence have made the world safer for autocracy. The essay concludes by considering how U.S. actions might affect Beijing’s calculus and the future of competition between autocracy and democracy.
Keywords: China, autocracy, ideology, democracy, influence, diffusion
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