World cannot afford another cold war: Experts

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Sargodha-The world could not afford any cold war. Perceived threat of rising China has put the US under an imperial fatigue, acting under a hawkish approach of the current US regime. The Chinese have adopted a policy of a de-ideological method of conducting foreign relations and advocates an inclusive global order based on mutual respect and non-interference. The Trump regime and its election rant would drag the situation into some confrontation but prudent Chinese response can save the world from a confrontational situation.

This was the crux of the deliberations shared by the notable experts of international relations, on Tuesday in a webinar titled ‘Can the world afford another cold war’ organized by Pakistan Institute of China Studies, Sargodha University as part of its summer webinar series.

The webinar series is aimed at providing an opportunity to go online for the quest for critical thinking by addressing contemporary international and national issues, and their implications on Pakistan. It also aimed to search workable and practically possible solutions of perceived problems in the light of expert opinions.

Dr Hu Shisheng Director Institute for South Asia Studies, China Institute of Contemporary International Relations, Dr Guo Xuetang Director Institute for International Strategy and Policy Analysis, Shanghai University, Dr Filippo Boni, Lecturer Department of Politics and International Studies, the Open University, UK, Dr Salma Malik from Department of Defence and Strategic Studies, Quid-i-Azam University, and Dr Ishtiaq Ahmad Vice Chancellor Sargodha University were among the key participants of the webinar which was hosted by Dr Fazal ur Rehman, Director PICS, Sargodha University.

Dr Hu Shisheng said “This cold war would be limited and have positive effects that help in global health and governance. China has been focusing on strengthening its neighbor countries, it is largely a source for lower-cost consumer goods, it has grown into an increasingly high-tech economy and industrial espionage to steal a march on competitors frustrated the US administration over growing imbalance in relationships.”

Dr Filippo Boni viewed current US posturing due to the Trump regime agenda for election rant. He also believed that even countries like India within the US alliance don’t share the US version, while wishing to advocate their own agenda. “European approach is not a US centric way of defining global order. Europeans are appreciative of BRI to some extent generating a shared objective of global development, whereas, the US will continue to adopt a negative way of defining Chinese model of development, especially, calling BRI and CPEC type models a debt trap” Dr Boni said.

Dr Guo Xuetang was of the view that the differences between the United States and China are stark and fundamental. They can barely be managed by negotiations and can never really be assuaged. The ideological confrontation would set the new world order like India is trying to be benefitted from the US for its own ambitious agenda. He urged the world to work for Gross Development Peace in every region and across the world.

Dr Salma Malik discussed the aggressive approach of the US towards China and the impacts of the push factor on developing countries particularly the countries of South Asia and Africa. China-US confrontation would offend developing countries militarily and economically. The great power rivalry can translate down into South Asia, which could be further played in Afghanistan, disrupting peace efforts and can fuel the proxy war, she added.

Dr Ishtiaq Ahmad summed up the case applying a neo-realist theoretical framework, where the current US regime is on a trajectory of confrontation. Military conflict between two sides is less as the big economic exchange existed, so complex interdependence plays its part. However, it could be a protracted competition that should be handled by prudent Chinese response, he concluded.