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Friday, November 16, 2012

China and Proliferation of Weapons of Mass Destruction and Missiles: Policy Issues



Shirley A. Kan
Specialist in Asian Security Affairs

Congress has long been concerned about whether U.S. policy advances the national interest in reducing the role of the People’s Republic of China (PRC) in the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction (WMD) and missiles that could deliver them. Recipients of China’s technology reportedly include Pakistan and countries said by the State Department to have supported terrorism, such as Iran. This CRS Report, updated as warranted, discusses the security problem of China’s role in weapons proliferation and issues related to the U.S. policy response since the mid- 1990s. China has taken some steps to mollify U.S. and other foreign concerns about its role in weapons proliferation. Nonetheless, supplies from China have aggravated trends that result in ambiguous technical aid, more indigenous capabilities, longer-range missiles, and secondary (retransferred) proliferation. According to unclassified intelligence reports submitted as required to Congress, China has been a “key supplier” of technology, particularly PRC entities providing nuclear and missile-related technology to Pakistan and missile-related technology to Iran.

Policy approaches in seeking PRC cooperation have concerned summits, sanctions, and satellite exports. On November 21, 2000, the Clinton Administration agreed to waive missile proliferation sanctions, resume processing licenses to export satellites to China, and discuss an extension of the bilateral space launch agreement, in return for another PRC promise on missile nonproliferation. However, PRC proliferation activities have continued to raise questions about China’s commitment to nonproliferation and the need for U.S. sanctions. The Bush Administration imposed sanctions on 20 occasions on various PRC “entities” (including state-owned entities) for troublesome transfers related to missiles and chemical weapons to Pakistan, Iran, or perhaps another country, including repeated sanctions on some “serial proliferators.” Among those sanctions, in September 2001, the Administration imposed missile proliferation sanctions that effectively denied satellite exports, after a PRC company transferred technology to Pakistan, despite the promise of 2000. In September 2003, the State Department imposed additional sanctions on NORINCO, a defense industrial entity, effectively denying satellite exports to China. However, for six times, the State Department waived this sanction for the ban on imports of other PRC government products related to missiles, space systems, electronics, and military aircraft, and issued a permanent waiver in 2007. Since 2009, the Obama Administration has imposed sanctions on 10 occasions on multiple PRC entities for weapon proliferation-related activities.

Skeptics question whether China’s cooperation in weapons nonproliferation warrants the U.S. pursuit of closer ties, even as sanctions were required against PRC technology transfers. Some criticize the imposition of U.S. sanctions targeting PRC “entities” but not the government. Others doubt the effectiveness of any stress on sanctions over diplomacy. In 2002-2008, the U.S. approach relied on China’s influence on North Korea to dismantle its nuclear weapons. Beijing hosted the “Six-Party Talks” (last held in December 2008) with limited results. China’s balanced approach evolved to vote for some U.N. Security Council (UNSC) sanctions against nuclear proliferation in North Korea and Iran. Some still called for engaging more with Beijing to use its leverage against Pyongyang and Tehran. However, North Korea’s second nuclear test in 2009 and military attacks against South Korea in 2010 prompted greater debate about the value of China’s roles. After much diplomacy, the PRC voted in June 2009 for UNSC Resolution 1874 to expand sanctions previously imposed under Resolution 1718 in 2006 against North Korea and voted in June 2010 for UNSC Resolution 1929 for the fourth set of sanctions against Iran. Still, concerns grew that China expanded nuclear cooperation with Pakistan, helped the DPRK, and could undermine sanctions against Iran (including in the oil/gas energy sector). Legislation includes sanctions against Iran in P.L. 111-195, P.L. 112-81, and P.L. 112-158, and S.Con.Res. 12.



Date of Report: November 7, 2012
Number of Pages: 85
Order Number: RL31555
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Monday, November 12, 2012

U.S. Assistance Programs in China



Thomas Lum
Foreign Affairs Analyst

This report examines U.S. foreign assistance activities in the People’s Republic of China (PRC), particularly U.S. Department of State and U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) programming, foreign operations appropriations, policy history, and legislative background. International programs supported by U.S. departments and agencies other than the Department of State and USAID are not covered in this report.

U.S. foreign assistance efforts in the PRC aim to promote human rights, democracy, the rule of law, and environmental conservation in China (including Tibet) and to support Tibetan livelihoods and culture. The United States Congress has played a leading role in determining program priorities and funding levels for these objectives. Congressionally mandated rule of law, civil society, public participation, and related programs together constitute an important component of U.S. human rights policy toward China. According to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, the United States is the largest provider of “government and civil society” programming among major bilateral foreign aid donors.

Between 2001 and 2011, the United States government authorized or made available $310 million for Department of State foreign assistance efforts in the PRC, including Peace Corps programs. Of this total, $257 million was devoted to human rights, democracy, rule of law, and related activities; Tibetan communities; and the environment. U.S. program areas have included promoting the rule of law, civil society, and democratic norms and institutions; training legal professionals; building the capacity of judicial institutions; reforming the criminal justice system; supporting sustainable livelihoods and cultural preservation in Tibetan communities; protecting the environment; and improving the prevention, care, and treatment of HIV/AIDS in China. The direct recipients of State Department and USAID grants have been predominantly U.S.-based non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and universities. Some Chinese NGOs, universities, and government entities have participated in, collaborated with, or indirectly benefited from U.S. programs and foreign aid grantees. Appropriations for Department of State and USAID programs in China reached a peak in FY2010, totaling $46.9 million. Funding decreased by nearly 20% in FY2011, to an estimated $37.7 million. Congress further reduced appropriations in FY2012, resulting in the discontinuation of a number of rule of law and environmental programs.

Some policy makers argue that the United States government should not provide assistance to China because the PRC has significant financial resources of its own, some of them obtained through allegedly unfair trade practices, and can manage its own development needs. Other critics contend that U.S. democracy, rule of law, environmental, and related programs have had little effect in China. Some experts counter that U.S. assistance activities in China have helped to protect some rights, build social and legal foundations for political change, and bolster reformminded officials in the PRC government. They also suggest that U.S. programs have nurtured relationships among governmental and non-governmental actors and educational institutions in the United States and the PRC, which have helped to develop common understandings about democratic norms and principles. Other programs are said to have reduced environmental and health threats coming from China. Some proponents of assistance emphasize that U.S. programs in China aim to promote U.S. interests in areas where the PRC government has lacked the expertise or will to make greater progress.



Date of Report: October 22, 2012
Number of Pages: 18
Order Number: RS22663
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Guam: U.S. Defense Deployments



Shirley A. Kan
Specialist in Asian Security Affairs

Since 2000, the U.S. military has been building up forward-deployed forces on the westernmost U.S. territory of Guam to increase U.S. presence, deterrence, and power projection for potential responses to crises and disasters, counterterrorism, and contingencies in support of South Korea, Japan, the Philippines, Taiwan, or elsewhere in Asia. Since 2006, joint exercises based at Guam called “Valiant Shield” have boosted U.S. military readiness in the Asian-Pacific region. The defense buildup on Guam has been moderate. China has concerns about Guam’s buildup, suspecting it to be directed against China. There has been concern that China and North Korea could target Guam with missiles. Still, Guam’s role increased in engaging with China’s military.

In 2006, the United States and Japan agreed on a Realignment Roadmap to strengthen their alliance, including a buildup on Guam to cost $10.3 billion, with Japan contributing 60%. Goals were to start the related construction on Guam by 2010 and to complete relocation of about 8,000 marines from Okinawa to Guam by 2014. In Tokyo on February 17, 2009, the Secretary of State signed the bilateral “Agreement Between the Government of the United States of America and the Government of Japan Concerning the Implementation of the Relocation of the III Marine Expeditionary Force Personnel and Their Dependents From Okinawa to Guam” that reaffirmed the “Roadmap” of May 1, 2006.

However, completion of the marines’ relocation by 2014 would be unlikely, and the original realignment actually would have involved more than moving 8,000 marines to Guam. In September 2009, the Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ) became the ruling party. This political change raised uncertainty as Japan sought to re-negotiate the agreement, even while the United States sought its implementation. The dispute over the location on Okinawa of the Futenma Replacement Facility (FRF) to replace the Marine Corps Air Station Futenma raised implications for the relocation of marines from Okinawa to Guam. Then, North Korea’s attack on South Korea’s naval ship Cheonan in March 2010, and China’s deployment of its Navy near Okinawa and confrontation with Japan’s forces in April, catalyzed Japan to resolve the dispute in favor of stronger deterrence in alliance with the United States. On May 28, the Secretaries of Defense and State and their counterparts in Japan issued a “2+2” Joint Statement, in which they reaffirmed the 2006 Roadmap and the 2009 Agreement. In September 2010, the Navy and Army issued a Record of Decision that deferred some decisions for Guam. Nonetheless, despite the dispute over the FRF, Japan has budgeted for direct contributions and loans for the marines’ relocation to Guam.

By 2011, some Members urged attention to concerns that included Japan’s impasse, expanded costs, and the delay in the realignment even as the U.S. military presence and readiness remain critical. On May 11, 2011, Senators Carl Levin, John McCain, and Jim Webb called for a review of plans to restructure military forces in South Korea, Japan, and Guam. Meanwhile, President Obama issued in January 2012 a new strategy of “rebalancing” priorities more to the Pacific (in what some call a “pivot” to the Pacific). Finally, on February 8, the United States and Japan agreed to “adjust” the Roadmap and separate the move of marines from the plan for the FRF, in order to make progress separately. A U.S.-Japan Joint Statement of April 2012 specified that out of about 9,000 marines to be relocated from Okinawa, about 5,000 marines would move to Guam. Out of the new estimated cost of $8.6 billion, Japan would contribute $3.1 billion. On July 24, the Defense Secretary submitted to Congress a required independent assessment on the posture in the Pacific. Legislation includes the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for FY2013 (H.R. 4310; S. 3254). Updated as warranted, this CRS Report discusses major developments and policy issues related to the defense buildup.



Date of Report: October 25, 2012
Number of Pages: 29
Order Number: RS22570
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Wednesday, November 7, 2012

A Guide to China’s Upcoming Leadership Transitions



Susan V. Lawrence
Specialist in Asian Affairs

China, the only Communist Party-led nation in the G-20 grouping of major economies, is in the midst of a sweeping set of political transitions that began in 2011 and could conclude as late as 2014. The most important of the transitions is to take place at the next of the Party’s quinquennial national congresses, the 18th Congress, scheduled to open on November 8, 2012, at which the Party is to appoint a new General Secretary and a new collective leadership. Four months later, at the 12th National People’s Congress in March 2013, China is to appoint new State and National People’s Congress leaders. The Party’s new General Secretary, assumed to be Xi Jinping, is expected to be named State President, while another member of the collective Party leadership, current Vice Premier Li Keqiang, is expected to be named State Premier. So far unclear is whether China’s current top leader, Hu Jintao, will give up his post overseeing China’s military at the 18th Party Congress, or whether he will retain the military job for two more years, until 2014.

The U.S. Congress has a strong interest in China’s upcoming leadership transitions. China is the United States’ second largest trading partner and largest supplier of imports, as well as being the largest foreign holder of U.S. debt. Both countries are major players in global efforts to tackle the European debt crisis, rein in the nuclear ambitions of North Korea and Iran, and manage instability in the Middle East in the wake of the Arab Spring. China’s military modernization is now a factor in U.S. strategic planning. Who the new Chinese leaders are, the inter-personal dynamics among them, and their policy inclinations will have significant implications for U.S.- China relations and for the China’s role in the Asia-Pacific region and the world. Congress also has an interest in understanding China’s upcoming political transitions as a means of evaluating China’s progress, or lack thereof, toward giving its citizens a meaningful role in the development of their political system. The U.S. government has articulated such a role as a goal for U.S. policy.

This report is intended to provide Congress with a guide to the transitions, covering their distinct features and specific issues of interest, including the Party’s next steps in the ongoing scandal involving Bo Xilai, the former Chongqing Party Secretary and Politburo member who fell from grace after his wife was implicated in the murder of a British businessman. This report also previews some of the challenges facing China’s new leaders, starting with the requirement to consolidate their power. Xi Jinping would be the first top leader in the post-Mao Zedong era not personally selected by Deng Xiaoping, the dominant political figure of the era. He and his colleagues will also have to contend with not one but two retired Communist Party General Secretaries jockeying for influence behind the scenes, and with an irreverent micro-blogging Chinese public primed to pounce on their mistakes. Policy challenges for China’s new leaders include determining the appropriate role for the state sector in an ambitious shift in economic growth models, re-conceiving China’s foreign policy, and deciding how to respond to growing public expectations for political reform. The United States has a strong interest in how China’s new leaders choose to approach all those challenges.

Subsequent reports will cover the outcomes of the 18th Party Congress and the 12th National People’s Congress. For a detailed discussion of the Chinese political system, please see CRS Report R41007, Understanding China’s Political System , by Susan V. Lawrence and Michael F. Martin. For background information about Xi Jinping, the man expected to be named General Secretary of the Communist Party at the 18th Party Congress in November, see CRS Report R42342, China’s Vice President Xi Jinping Visits the United States: What Is at Stake?, by Susan V. Lawrence.



Date of Report: October 16, 2012
Number of Pages: 24
Order Number: R42786
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