Intelligence Squared U.S. Debates "Coronavirus Will Reshape the World Order in China's Favor"

Next Wednesday

State Department veterans and a former UN Security Council president debate China's post-Covid future


Shore Fire Media

Last week, veteran nonpartisan debate series Intelligence Squared U.S. held its first virtual two-on-two debate in front of thousands of viewers. And next Wednesday, June 3rd, they return with the second, debating the motion "Coronavirus Will Reshape the World Order in China's Favor" in partnership with Foreign Affairs.

While Washington embraces "America First" and abdicates its global leadership role, some argue, Beijing is stepping up to fill the void. By providing material assistance to struggling nations, organizing world leaders, and trumpeting its virus response, China is vying for power and influence. But others see a global future where Beijing's standing is diminished, not bolstered. They argue the Chinese Communist Party's mismanagement and lack of transparency around the virus will spark lasting mistrust and condemnation and that an economic slowdown coupled with domestic unrest will challenge Xi Jinping's authority at home and abroad.

Arguing for the motion are former United Nations Security Council president Kishore Mahbubani and former Assistant Secretary of State for East Asian and Pacific Affairs Kurt Campbell. Arguing against the motion are 28-year State Department veteran Susan Thornton and Minxin Pei, author of China's Crony Capitalism: The Dynamics of Regime Delay. As in Intelligence Squared's live events, audience vote will determine the winner, based on which side's numbers improve the most between a pre- and post-debate vote.

The debate will begin at 6:00 PM EST next Wednesday, June 3rd. It will be free to watch, but advance registration is required. Click here to register to watch:

Background Reading by the Debaters

The Coronavirus Could Reshape Global Order
By Kurt M. Campbell and Rush Doshi

China's Coming Upheaval
By Minxin Pei


* Kurt M. Campbell: CEO, The Asia Group & Former Diplomat
Kurt M. Campbell is the CEO of The Asia Group and the former Assistant Secretary of State for East Asian and Pacific Affairs. Widely credited as an architect of the Obama administration's "pivot to Asia," Campbell is the co-founder of the Center for a New American Security and former director of the Aspen Strategy Group.

* Kishore Mahbubani: Former President, UN Security Council & Author, "Has China Won?"
Kishore Mahbubani is an academic and former Singaporean diplomat. He previously served as president of the United Nations Security Council and is a distinguished fellow at the National University of Singapore's Asia Research Institute. His latest book, released in March, is titled, "Has China Won? The Chinese Challenge to American Primacy."


* Minxin Pei: Scholar & Author, "China's Crony Capitalism"
Minxin Pei is an expert on U.S.-Asia relations and the author of "China's Crony Capitalism: The Dynamics of Regime Delay." He is currently a professor of government at Claremont McKenna College and a senior fellow at the German Marshall Fund.

* Susan Thornton: Senior Fellow, Yale's Paul Tsai China Center & Former Diplomat
Susan Thornton is an American diplomat who spent more than 28 years at the State Department, focusing on East and Central Asia. In 2018, she retired as Acting Assistant Secretary for East Asian and Pacific Affairs. She is now a visiting professor at Yale Law and a senior fellow at the Paul Tsai China Center.


A non-partisan, non-profit organization, Intelligence Squared U.S. was founded in 2006 to address a fundamental problem in America: the extreme polarization of our nation and our politics. Their mission is to restore critical thinking, facts, reason, and civility to American public discourse.

The award-winning debate series reaches millions of viewers and listeners through through multi-platform distribution, including radio, live streaming, podcasts, interactive digital content, and on-demand apps on Roku and Apple TV. With over 170 debates and counting, Intelligence Squared U.S. has encouraged the public to "think twice" on a wide range of provocative topics. Author and ABC News correspondent John Donvan has moderated IQ2US since 2008.

May 29, 2020 12:10pm ET by Shore Fire Media  

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