New Delhi, Dec. 2 -- Transparent tension between the US and China at the recently concluded Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) meetings in Port Moresby underlined a disturbing phenomenon that cast a dark shadow over the G20 meetings in Buenos Aires (30 November-1 December). Tensions are so high that China cancelled a high-level trade delegation to Washington scheduled for earlier this month. White House officials are now mooting the prospect, albeit unlikely, of trying to eject China from the World Trade Organization (WTO).

The spat has spread beyond the White House and President Donald Trump. At the New Economy Forum held in Singapore in November, Henry Paulson, the former head of Goldman Sachs and treasury secretary under Preside...