Aren't we trying to work harder with China? I thought Bush was making movement in this area. It's hard to follow/find news about it. Most of the international news is so centered on Iraq.
I don't know about harder, but the relationship with Wen Jiabao, the premier of China, has made strangebedfellows. Bush's war on terror has given China carte blanche by stifling political unrest in Xinjiang and Tibet. Two of China's biggest hotspots for revolution against the dictatorship. Of course, there's the upcoming tensions that will apex around Taiwan as elucidated in the following article:
Taiwan ‘holds key to Sino-US relations’ in second term
Crucial to the success of the Bush foreign policy in the new term is America’s relations with China, which has indicated that Washington’s handling of the Taiwan question would be a critical factor in Sino-US relations.
“We hope that during the second term of the Bush Administration, the constructive cooperative relationship between China and the United States can continue to achieve progress”, said Foreign Ministry spokesman Kong Quan. “And one of the important critical factors is the proper handling of the Taiwan question. We hope the US government can properly handle this issue”.
China considers Taiwan part of its territory and has pledged to reunify the island with “the motherland”, by force if necessary. The US is obliged by law to supply Taiwan with defensive weapons if its security is threatened.
China refrained from making specific comments on the State of the Union address last week, but said it hoped Washington would spread peace rather than war and dominance over international affairs.
“We think the United States is a country with major influence in the world. We hope the United States will play a positive role in promoting peace, stability and development in the world”, Kong told a regular briefing.
In response to Bush’s statements that America “will stand with the allies of freedom to support democratic movements in the Middle East and beyond”, Kong replied that “Middle East affairs should be resolved by people in the Middle East”.
Asked whether China believed it was being lumped in with countries where Washington wants to promote democracy, Kong declined to answer but argued that China had become more democratic.
“We’ve all along made remarkable progress in carrying out democracy legislation and in other areas. The Chinese people will unswervingly go down the road it chooses and we are fully confident of China’s glorious future”.
On Bush’s portrayal of the international situation, Kong said that while China agreed there were “unstable factors” such as terrorism, Beijing believed all states should follow the UN Charter to safeguard world peace.
Sino-US relations suffered a rocky period at the start of Bush’s first term when his Administration described China as a “strategic competitor”, and following a mid-air collision between a US spy plane and a Chinese fighter jet.
The two sides have since vastly improved ties, with cooperation in anti-terrorism and negotiations with North Korea.