GOOD MORNING FROM LONDON
It is good to understand the Thucydides Principle – that established powers try not to yield to rising powers. This is the thinking of prominent US Academic – Graham Allison – as he views China’s challenge to US supremacy.
This week, Russia fired warning shots across the path of the UK’s HMS Defender in disputed waters off the coast of Crimea. A skirmish occurred. Do we face more skirmishes as the UK’s new aircraft carrier, The Queen Elizabeth, prepares to lead a multi-national fleet into the S China Sea? Is this War or the opening salvoes of War or a warning sign to China? Or all three?
China has long expected a US-led attack on China. Back in 1958, again in 1965 + now today, the rise of China forces the US to re-appraise its hitherto political + military supremacy. Now there is a New Boy on the Block. Life is different. Will it be War-War or just another skirmish?
Step back + see today in the context of past Centuries and the Rise + Fall of Rome, Charlemagne, Ghengis Kahn, the British Empire, the challenge of Hitler. And then to today + the relative decline of the US + the growing significance of China. All generations down the year’s witness changes in the Balance of Power. 2021 is no different.