pacific forum History of Pacific Forum

Issues & Insights Vol. 07 – No. 08

One of the least understood dimensions of China’s rise is its impact on the strategic nuclear relationship with the United States. The nuclear component of Beijing’s military modernization effort is coming under increasing scrutiny as China strives to become more prominent in regional and global politics.

U.S. and Chinese strategic cultures and doctrine are considerably different. That should be no surprise given the disparity in the size of their arsenals and respective levels of weapons development. Yet as both governments respond to a transformed threat environment and try to incorporate new capabilities, the credibility and survivability of their deterrents remain fundamental concerns for each country.