Romney calls for change of course on China

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In an op-ed in Thursday’s Wall Street Journal, Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney said that China remains the biggest obstacle to making the 21st century “an American century.”

Romney cited China’s population, its 10 percent average annual growth rate and its developing military power as the three factors that are enabling China to leapfrog the U.S. and threaten its global dominance.

“A China that comes to dominate Asia and much of the globe is increasingly becoming thinkable,” he wrote.

President Barack Obama, Romney wrote, is encouraging China to continue to grow and pose a threat to U.S. prosperity by allowing it to manipulate its currency, declining to confront it over human rights violations, and moving to reduce American military spending.

“We must change course,” Romney insisted.

He promised to maintain military strength, confront China about its abuses in the economic and human rights arenas, and through that, ensure security for the U.S.

“The sum total of my approach will ensure that this is an American, not a Chinese century,” he concluded. “We have much to gain from close relations with a China that is prosperous and free … but we should not fail to recognize that a China that is a prosperous tyranny will increasingly pose problems for us … and for the entire world.”

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