War Like No Other: The Truth About China's Challenge to America

Overview

Nobody approaches the objectivity and precision of Bush and O'Hanlon when it comes to analysis of the military and political dimensions of the Taiwan issue. This is one challenge that U.S. policymakers and military strategists cannot afford to get wrong, and scholars cannot afford to ignore.
- Michael Green, former Senior Director for Asian Affairs National Security Council

The Showdown to Come

In 1995, during...

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Overview

Nobody approaches the objectivity and precision of Bush and O'Hanlon when it comes to analysis of the military and political dimensions of the Taiwan issue. This is one challenge that U.S. policymakers and military strategists cannot afford to get wrong, and scholars cannot afford to ignore.
- Michael Green, former Senior Director for Asian Affairs National Security Council

The Showdown to Come

In 1995, during a heated discussion about that year's Taiwan crisis, a Chinese general remarked to a U.S. diplomat, "In the end, you care more about Los Angeles than you do about Taipei." In a single sentence, he both questioned the level of America's commitment to a longtime ally and threatened massive, perhaps nuclear, retaliation should the United States intervene militarily on Taiwan's behalf. In the end, President Clinton sent two aircraft carriers to the region, and China ceased its military exercises in the Taiwan Strait. A decade later, however, China is much stronger, both economically and militarily, and it holds a significant amount of America's national debt. If another Taiwan crisis should occur-as it almost certainly will-would China back down?

In A War Like No Other, you'll discover how little it would take to transform the close cooperation and friendly rivalry between the United States and the People's Republic of China into the first-ever shooting war between two nuclear powers. This chilling look into one possible future offers thoughtful advice to both governments on how to reduce the chances of such a nightmare actually occurring. Two Brookings Institution scholars offer specific prescriptions on how the two nations can improve communications, especially in times of crisis; avoid risky behavior, even when provoked; and, above all, remember which buttons not to push.

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Editorial Reviews

Foreign Affairs

Bush and O'Hanlon have produced a tough-minded, analytically rigorous study of how China and the United States might, through miscalculation, find themselves at war with each other. They advance numerous scenarios that might lead to conflict. They present no grand solutions but rather point out ways in which troubles can be avoided. They are particularly sensitive to the dangers inherent in any Taiwanese claims to independence. They do not take seriously the danger that Taiwan could become the laughing stock of the world by declaring independence and receiving recognition from no one.<

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780471986775
  • Publisher: Turner Publishing Company
  • Publication date: 3/30/2007
  • Edition description: First Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 240
  • Product dimensions: 9.32 (w) x 6.16 (h) x 0.93 (d)

Meet the Author

Richard C. Bush worked on China and Taiwan issues in the U.S. government for nineteen years. He is now Director of the Center for Northeast Asian Policy Studies at the Brookings Institution.

Michael E. O'Hanlon holds the Sydney Stein, Jr. Chair at the Brookings Institution. His articles appear regularly in Slate, Foreign Affairs, the Washington Post, the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, the Washington Times, and the Wall Street Journal. A leading expert on national security, O'Hanlon frequently comments on the news for major papers, news channels, and NPR.

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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments.

1 Thinking the Unthinkable.

2 An Emerging Rival?

3 Competition versus Opposition.

4 The Lost Island.

5 The Taiwan Tinderbox.

6 Adding Fuel to the Fire.

7 China Might Think It Would Win.

8 Spiraling Out of Control.

9 From Standoff to Stand-down.

Appendix: Why China Could Not Seize Taiwan.

Notes.

Index.

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