American foreign policy and U.S. relations with Russia and China after 11 September

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Despite increasing cooperation, there are still many areas of disagreement between the United States and Russia, as well as the United States and China. They are serious points of conflict that restrain the further improvement of the relations and may even aggravate existing relations. Whether they were inherited from the past or appeared recently, all disagreements are dangerous because they make transitional U.S.-Russia and U.S.-China relations unstable. Therefore, it is reasonable to pay special attention to the potential threat from disagreements and not to overestimate the current levels of cooperation. To further advance cooperation and build more stable relations, the countries need to remove the constraints or reduce the negative effects from them. This may be done by resolving disagreements or by narrowing areas of disagreement through more respect to the national interests of other countries. I present several implications and policy recommendations based on my research. First, the 11 September terrorist attacks shook U.S. national interests and, as a result, U.S. foreign policy toward Russia and China. The change from a threat-based model to a capability-based model in defense planning, and the need for cooperation with other powerful states to conduct war in Afghanistan and fight terrorism more successfully, have changed Russia and China from former adversaries and strategic competitors of the United States into current partners. Focusing on security issues and facilitating cooperation with these regional powers is a crucial shift in U.S. foreign policy.

Recommended Citation

Gladkyy, Oleksandr. "American foreign policy and US relations with Russia and China after 11 September." World Affairs 166, no. 1 (2003): 3-23.