Wednesday, September 03, 2014

Stumbling Into War

I've long said that we must be careful in predicting foreign actions because our rational is not their rational. It works the other way, of course.

Including China:

While the United States is often accused of ignoring the cultural differences with its allies and opponents, and making bad decisions based on misperceptions, other countries often do the same. While the United States has made many mistakes because American leaders thought foreigners thought like Americans (but in a different language) at least the U.S. has come to acknowledge that this problem exists. Not so in China where this lack of empathy for other cultures is rampant in the government and especially in the military. This includes that part of the military that prepares plans for dealing with foreigners in crises situations that could lead to war.

This wouldn't matter much if China didn't have power projection capabilities. But as these capabilities grow, China's potential epic fail in seeing how others react to China could spell disaster.

And if you combine it with a failure on our part to predict accurately how China will react? Well, that spells war.