Since Henry Kissinger's journey to China in July 1971 until the cold war was finished in the late 1980s, the American policy toward China was in essence shaped by the difficulties posed by the Soviet Union and the strategic interrelations with Beijing.
After Washington began relations with China, at no time was it able to disregard Chinese interests. In the cold war conditions, cooperative U. S. -Chinese cooperation was of considerable importance to risk over less-significant bilateral disagreements.Despite that, U.
S. policy was neither standing still nor unchangeable. Rather, sometimes U. S.
statesmen were more tending downwards to pacification than ever before. A number of conditions shaped U. S. policy. Security interest was in particular important.
Considering that the Soviet threat appeared more rigorous, Washington wanted closer U. S. -Chinese relations and adopted a more adaptable policy in respect of bilateral conflicts, including the Taiwan issue. But this triquetrous dynamic did not decide U.
S. policy toward China.Policy strategy in any country, but specifically in a country that is both an extremely powerful and democratic, is seldom the result of the striving of “objective” strategic interests, as determined by the international system (Qingshan, 69). On the contrary, strategic circumstances presented the spacious context in which other international and home conditions constructed U.
S. policy making, including elite concept of U. S. security, the integral asymmetry in U.
S. and Chinese power, and U. S. domestic politics.
The particular mix of the role of these other conditions in U. S. policy making underwent change over the nearly twenty years of relations with China.The only permanent factor during this period was that U. S. leaders uniformly appreciated China's contribution to U.
S. security and, therefore, at minimum, tried to establish stable relations. Main Body The Nixon/Ford Administrations: From Strength to Weakness Within a period of the first years of the Nixon administration, the United States' policy towards China was characterized by the combination of an evident reduction of the Soviet problems and the appearance of U. S.
-Soviet relaxing of tension.Third, there emerged the trend in Sino-Soviet relations of persistent that made tension and ongoing Chinese perception of a dangerous Soviet threat more intense. This strategic context both effected the administration to seek U. S-Chinese resumption of friendly relations to secure Chinese relations vis-a-vis the Soviet Union and at the same time enabled Washington to admit a comparatively moderate price for Chinese cooperation (Gaddis 50). In mid- 1973, however, U.
S. strategic conditions began to worsen fast. Watergate made weak both Nixon's and Ford's executive power.Simultaneously, the United States' post-Vietnam War-weariness decreased the public's eagerness for international policy and high defense budgets.
The administration thought these trends prevented it from sufficiently responding to a renewed Soviet strategic problem. These strategic conditions caused Washington to pay a higher price for Chinese relations. President Ford's 1976 campaign considerations prevented the White House from making the actions necessary for process of normalizing (Gaddis 56). The Carter Years: Shifting Perceptions and the United States' China PolicyWhereas the Ford administration's different policy towards China reflected its opinion of a growing Soviet problem, President Carter entered office with a comparatively optimistic thought about Soviet behavior.
Carter and his chief foreign policy assistant during the early period, Secretary of State Cyrus Vance, did not see any necessity to develop U. S. -Chinese cooperation. They choose to put the normalization process in a state of temporary delay and to stop Kissinger's policy of developing Chinese military relations with the West.Soon, nevertheless, Carter adopted the view of his forerunner regarding the Soviet threat to U.
S. interests. As this change occurred, the administration's policy towards China eventually overstepped its predecessor's interest in cooperation. In response to the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan, under National Security Adviser Zbigniew Brzezinski's increasing influence, not only did the president quicken the normalization initiatives, but he also began expanded military relations (Morgan 142). Coping Without the Soviet Threat: The Importance of Domestic PoliticsDuring the second Reagan term and into the Bush administration, the tendency of improving U. S.
security conditions quickened as Soviet power rapidly became lower. Finally, this tendency destroyed the strategic basis of U. S. Chinese cooperation. In situation with respect to these circumstances, U.
S. domestic politics assumed greater importance as the U. S. unanimity for continual U. S. -Chinese relations reduced.
Politicians received greater flexibility to concentrate on the less-appealing aspects of Chinese politics and foreign policy (Nathan 412).This was in particular the case regarding human rights. Under such conditions, the White House's attempts to strengthen its China policy were increasingly hindered by Congress. Domestic politics was contributing decidedly to the course of U. S.
-Chinese cooperation. Peaceful developments in U. S. -Soviet relations little by little weakened the U. S.
interest in stable U. S. -Chinese cooperation and in the end caused the demise of even the appearance of cooperation. With the decrease of the Soviet challenge, Congress was reluctant to simply follow the White House's lead on policy towards China.
Finally there was worry that PRC arms exports to the Middle East would make it problematic to secure congressional agreement on arms sales to China (Carter 20). Human rights issues also decreased White House power to regulate policy towards China. In 1987, Beijing's use of force against Tibetan protesters impacted U. S. politics immediately.
The Reagan administration attempted to downplay the problem. Notwithstanding, the Senate voted ninety-eight to zero to express strong disapproval of Chinese policy (Carter 69).Within a period of Bush administration, China policy control became even more problematic as the Soviet challenge all but disappeared. By mid- 1989, the speed of the Soviet collapse has stimulated Soviet force reductions in Europe. Final collapse of the Soviet alliance system rigorously worsened Soviet military capabilities in Europe. That was the end of the cold war (Chen 102).
Conclusion Thus, the period of the cold war was a unique period in post -World War II international relations.There were strategic conditions based on three points of view that established the parameters of the United States' China policy. Within the limits of the necessity for relation regarding the Soviet threat and the associated changes in the U. S. -Chinese negotiating relationship, U. S.
policy toward China also underwent a process of domestic politics, elite perceptions, and U. S. power. At its most foundation, however, the policy was based on the awareness of a Soviet threat.Really, the mutual awareness stimulated both U.
S. and Chinese settlement of a dispute and decreased the importance of peripheral and bilateral conflicts. In the post-cold war era, U. S. domestic politics have continued to affect China policy considerably. Good China policy requires efficient domestic political strategies.
U. S. policy toward China is a matter of the pressures of and tensions between countless interest groups and the wishes of many political actors. Stable and friendly cooperation remains important objective for both China and U. S.
In the era of global easing of tension, however, management skills become of considerable importance.