Janan Ganesh has written another exceptionally odd column about U.S.-China rivalry:
And so an era of non-state enemies was always going to be awkward for the US. A superpower tussle is a beguiling return to the familiar. Washington’s enthusiasm for the China contest is not just a clear-eyed recognition of a real opponent. It is the relief of a governing class finding its métier again.
The change goes beyond the conceptual to the guts and grease of US power. For a generation, the Pentagon has planned for two regional (that is, Afghan-sized) wars at the same time. In 2018, its doctrine changed to fight one war for the very highest stakes.
The new posture should go better, which is to say it cannot go worse.
If the new posture means preparing to fight a war for the “very highest stakes,” it is easy to imagine how it could go much worse for the US than our failed wars of the last twenty years. Maybe it leads to the destruction of multiple aircraft carrier groups. Maybe it ends with nuclear explosions that destroy West Coast cities. It could go so much worse that we should be horrified at the prospect of intentionally courting a new great power conflict.
Daniel Larison is a weekly columnist for Antiwar.com and maintains his own site at Eunomia. He is former senior editor at The American Conservative. He has been published in the New York Times Book Review, Dallas Morning News, World Politics Review, Politico Magazine, Orthodox Life, Front Porch Republic, The American Scene, and Culture11, and was a columnist for The Week. He holds a PhD in history from the University of Chicago, and resides in Lancaster, PA. Follow him on Twitter.