20% of the world population is Chinese and in a global economic community, the interests of the People’s Republic of China are also America’s interests. Relationships have been strained between China and her neighbors and between China and the United States for more than a decade. There is a growing concern that these tensions will lead to war in the region. We’ll look at an overview of China today, and why Americans would be foolish to believe that what happens in East Asia has no effect on them. Howard Romanek was a long-time member of the China Roundtable of the Chicago Council on Global Affairs, and he is currently on the Board of Governors and Board of Directors of the Japan America Society of Chicago.