The fault lines in America’s China policy
- How to make sense of the cacophony inside and outside the White House
The contest between America and China has a postmodern look to it. Whereas presidents tried to isolate and contain the Soviet Union, America is economically entwined with China, the current would-be hegemon. The official government posture on Taiwan is “strategic ambiguity", a line so confusing that President Joe Biden has rewritten it several times. Perhaps that is why Jake Sullivan, the president’s national security adviser, reached for the example of the world’s most famous postmodernist architect when trying to explain the administration’s industrial and trade policies. “The way that we are going to build an international economic architecture is not going to be with Parthenon-style clear pillars as we did after the end of the second world war, but something that feels a little bit more like Frank Gehry."