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Trading with the Enemy: the Making of US Export Control Policy toward the People's Republic of China

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Duration: 0:54:51 | Added: 28 Mar 2016
Dr Hugo Meijer gives a talk at the International Political Economy of East Asia seminar.

In light of the intertwining logics of military competition and economic interdependence at play in US-China relations, Trading with the Enemy examines how the United States has balanced its potentially conflicting national security and economic interests in its relationship with the People’s Republic of China (PRC). To do so, Hugo Meijer investigates a strategically sensitive yet under-explored facet of US-China relations: the making of American export control policy on military-related technology transfers to China since 1979. Trading with the Enemy is the first monograph on this dimension of the US-China relationship in the post-Cold War. Based on 199 interviews, declassified documents, and diplomatic cables leaked by Wikileaks, two major findings emerge from this book. First, the US is no longer able to apply a strategy of military/technology containment of China in the same way it did with the Soviet Union during the Cold War. This is because of the erosion of its capacity to restrict the transfer of military-related technology to the PRC. Secondly, a growing number of actors in Washington have reassessed the nexus between national security and economic interests at stake in the US-China relationship – by moving beyond the Cold War trade-off between the two – in order to maintain American military preeminence vis-à-vis its strategic rivals. By focusing on how states manage the heterogeneous and potentially competing security and economic interests at stake in a bilateral relationship, this book seeks to shed light on the evolving character of interstate rivalry in a globalized economy, where rivals in the military realm are also economically interdependent.

Hugo Meijer is Lecturer in Defence Studies at King’s College London, UK. He is also Research Associate at the Center for International Studies (CERI), Sciences Po, France. Previously, he was postdoctoral research fellow at the Strategic Research Institute of the Military Academy (IRSEM), France, and Visiting Scholar at the Sigur Center for Asian Studies at George Washington University, USA. He received his PhD in Political Science and International Relations from Sciences Po. His current research focuses on US foreign and defense policy, US-China relations, transatlantic perspectives on China’s military modernization, the transformation of European armed forces, and the politics of international arms transfers. Recent and forthcoming publications: Trading with the Enemy: the Making of US Export Control Policy toward the People’s Republic of China (Oxford University Press, 2016); The Handbook of European Armed Forces, Oxford University Press, co-edited with Marco Wyss (forthcoming, 2016); Origins and Evolution of the US Rebalance toward Asia: Diplomatic, Military, and Economic Dimensions (ed) (Palgrave Macmillan, 2015); “Balancing Conflicting Security Interests: US Defense Exports to China in the Last Decade of the Cold War,” Journal of Cold War Studies 17(1) 2015.

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