DOI: 10.17721/2521-1706.2020.10.7

Makar Taran

Ph.D. (History), Associate Professor

Taras Shevchenko National University of Kyiv, Kyiv, Ukraine

ORCID: 0000-0003-3436-1560


Both at the level of political ideology and in the practical sphere, the American strategy of China’s engagement was a part of a global construction of a new architecture of the world order, based on the liberal-democratic political values but at the same time in line with American leadership. The engagement was in many ways reminiscent of Obama’s strategy of «reset» in relations with Russia, especially in terms of achieving qualitative domestic political changes through dialogue and cooperation. However, the conceptualization of the Trump’s administration China’ policy approaches led to some radical revisions of the American philosophy of international cooperation were made.

The objectives of the proposed paper aligned with answering the following research questions: What was wrong with the U.S. engagement strategy toward China evolved over the past decades? What are the implications of the U.S. China policy for Taiwan as well as the world at large (comparing with impact on U.S. policy towards Russia and its regional behavior regarding to Ukraine)? Will engagement be restarted or drastically reevaluated?

The methods we employed to do the research: comparative case study that is widely using in International Security studies analyzing issue within a situation or framework. Another method of qualitative methodology approach is a thematic analysis method.

The scientific novelty. Assuming that the model of cooperative engagement has largely exhausted itself in terms of the strategic objectives of each party we also emphasize that the model has led to the erosion of the possibility of critical US influence on key regions of the world.

Conclusions. It is somewhat paradoxical that a result of US cooperative approaches has brought about greater vulnerability of US formal and informal allies. Chinese and Russian foreign policy strategies have not changed significantly, and have attached even more on the main objects of a kind of historical revenge – Taiwan and Ukraine. Chinese and Russian foreign policy values in terms of waning «Western influences» have grown into offensive political realism. Which, in particular, was generated of sensitivity to the growing US influence in the post-bipolar world.

Key words: US foreign policy, US–China relations, China engagement strategy, US–Russia reset, Taiwan, Ukraine.

Full text


1. Таран, М. (2012) Попытки концептуальной адаптации «тайваньской» политики администрации Дж. Буша-младшего к новой военно-политической ситуации в Тайваньском проливе. Американистика: актуальные подходы и современные исследования, 4, 239-250. [in Russian].

2. Bader, J. (2018). U.S. – China relations: is it time to end engagement? [Іn English].

3. Blackwill, R. (2020). Implementing Grand Strategy Toward China. Twenty-Two U.S. Policy Prescriptions. [Іn English].

4. Friedberg, A. (2017). The Authoritarian Challenge. China, Russia and the Threat to the Liberal International Order. [Іn English].

5. Ger, Y. (2004). From Congagement to Engagement: The Changing American China Policy and Its Impact on Regional Security. American Journal of Chinese Studies, 2, 159-180. [Іn English].

6. Johnston, A., Ross, R. (1999). Engaging China: The Management of an Emerging Power. London: Routlege. [Іn English].

7. Minxin, Pei. (2009). China’s Trapped Transition. Harvard University Press. [Іn English].

8. Nation, C. (2010). Results of the «reset» in US-Russian relations. Paris: IFRI. [Іn English].

9. National Security Strategy of the United States of America. May 2010. The White House,  [Іn English].

10. Polachek, S., Robst, J., Chang, Y. (1999). Liberalism and Interdependence: Extending the Trade-Conflict Model. Journal of Peace Research, 4, 405-422. [Іn English].

11. Resnick, E. (2001). Defining Engagement. Journal of International Affairs, 2, 551-566. [Іn English].

12. Scobell, A. (2002). China and a strategic culture. [in English].

13. US policy toward China: recommendations for a new administration Task Force Report. (2017). [Іn English].

14. Viltard, Y. (2012). Qui a peur de la Chine? La contribution des théoriciens Américains à une croyance. Observatoire Européen de Défense, 1. [Іn French].

15. Wang, D., Jia, Z. (2012). Qiǎnxī Měiguó duì Tái zhèngcè yǎnbiàn jí qí jīběn tèdiǎn. Guójì zhèngzhì yánjiū, 2, 27-47. [Іn Chinese].