According to the Pentagon’s latest annual report on the Chinese Military and Security Developments, since 2002, Chinese leaders – including President Xi Jinping – have characterized the 21st century’s initial two decades as a “period of strategic opportunity.” They assess that international conditions during this time will facilitate domestic development and the expansion of China’s “comprehensive national power.”
China’s leaders increasingly seek to leverage China’s growing economic, diplomatic, and military clout to establish regional preeminence and expand the country’s international influence. The “One Belt, One Road,” now renamed the “Belt and Road Initiative” (BRI), is intended to develop strong economic ties with other countries, shape their interests to align with China’s, and deter confrontation or criticism of China’s approach to sensitive issues.
Moreover, the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) has distilled these objectives into President Xi’s “China Dream of national rejuvenation” to establish a powerful and prosperous China. In support…
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