Containing or counterbalancing China

I have said that containment was a strategy that has been mistaken for a policy. This phrase means that to define a policy is to define an end, whereas to define a strategy is to define a means. This debate about names - whether 'containment' or 'counterbalancing' - soon gets tangled in arguments about what the names themselves mean, and seriously misses the point. By debating the strategy before we get clear on the policy, we put the means before the ends. What we need to do first is clarify the policy that lies behind these strategies. So let's put the word 'containment' to one side and instead explore the key questions about the policy itself.

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