War by other means: Sino-US rivalry is growing in many areas

Sino-US rivalry is growing in many areas. Wrapping them all within a war narrative risks making things worse.

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Talk is growing about a "New Cold War", or even outright war, between the United States and China. This impacts not only the two giants. It ripples to countries in between, as seen in the meeting of foreign ministers convened last week by Asean.

While Asean had a much wider agenda of its own priorities, the competing claims in the South China Sea came particularly in focus. There was, moreover, considerable finger pointing between the US and China, which strained the unity and consensus of the group.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on September 18, 2020, with the headline War by other means: Sino-US rivalry is growing in many areas. Subscribe