US Secretary of Defence James Mattis has observed in his latest remarks at the Graduate Ceremony of the US Naval War College that “China has a long-range plan to change the existing international order” and it wants to lead it.
He cited the following as China’s motives to replicate its authoritarian politico-economic model (Marxism-Leninism with Chinese characteristics) in other parts of the world, to control the South China Sea, and to impose its rising economics of piling massive debt on others.
The above indicates that the US believes China has already begun to replace the existing US-dominated unipolar world system created by the US, by the Chinese model of the international order.
China publicly advocates a non-hierarchical world order but actually seeks a bipolar world order. It has been making all-out efforts to establish itself as a superpower by strengthening its role in international organisations and promoting new types of international organisations.
The Cold War bipolar system lasted for more than 40 years (1948-1989) until the US became the single superpower.
Some scholars argue that great power wars are less likely to occur under a bipolar system than under a unipolar system. Now we can find out whether this view is correct.
The present bipolar system is different from the one during the Cold War period (1945-1990) not only in terms of membership (the US and the Soviet Union vs. the US and China) but also in terms of the economic powers of the participating countries.—Agencies