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Thread: Back to the future, China's ideological warfare

  1. #1
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    Oct 2005

    Default Back to the future, China's ideological warfare

    After years of claiming it will not interfere in the politics of other countries, China has openly changed the game. During China's 19th National Congress last October, Xi basically assumes the role of dictator (ruler for life), and integrates Xi's thought into the Communist Party Constitution. Xi's thoughts includes endorsing Marxism with 21st Century characteristics. He has dismissed democracy as a failed system in subsequent public statements. Unfortunately for those of us that hope for peace, history tells us that any nation that has embraced Marxism as a national ideology has aggressively attempted to impose political control over their neighbors and in the case of the USSR, they attempted to establish Marxist based proxy governments globally. At least since 2008, China has interfered in the internal affairs of other countries despite claims to the contrary. China is now openly using a range of coercion and economic incentives to strongly influence, if not out right control, the decisions other countries make regarding their economy and security decisions. In short, they're eroding their sovereignty. For a nation that claims to be promoting peace, those words ring hollow when one examines how China is militarizing the South China Sea, militarily attempting to resolve border disputes with India and Bhutan, and militarily threatening Taiwan.

    The following article is interesting.

    At the height of his power, China's Xi Jinping moves to embrace Marxism
    A slickly produced five-episode educational show titled "Marx Was Right" was broadcast on television screens across China. While in Germany, Beijing gifted a giant statue of Marx to his hometown in Trier.

    The Chinese government's Marxism push comes at a time when they are trying to simultaneously portray themselves as the defenders of capitalism, including in several high-profile speeches by Xi at international economic forums.
    I suspect China will stumble over its contradictions as it continues to overreach with its coercive activities around the globe. Either China will modify how its employs its power, or sadly push it to the point of armed conflict. Armed conflict could range from a regional spat to a major world war. Part of me suspects China seeks a minor military engagement to test its military, but that could prove embarrassing for a military that hasn't seen combat in decades.

    "He sees an opportunity to assume global leadership and needs a theoretical foundation for writing new rules of a world order -- but shockingly he chose the Marxist banner."
    The comment below is probably an accurate assessment,

    "China's 'free trade' is based on building a wall around itself and then takes advantage of freedoms in other countries," he said.
    Also sadly true,
    "Here you have a Chinese strongman who just secured lifelong tenure, asserting influence not only through the so-called Belt-and-Road global trade scheme but also taking on the Western model as whole," he said.

    "But whatever China is doing is overshadowed by Trump... whose actions are taking pressure off of China -- as everyone is trying to decipher his next tweet," he added. "It's a very fragmented West -- I don't think there is reflection, let alone a united response to an ideological challenge from Xi."
    We can't tweet our way through troubled seas. Three of the world's superpowers are ruled by egomaniacs, and at least two of them of have an aggressive strategy to remake the world order. Emotion could over rule reason when push come to shove for any of the three leaders. We're cursed to live in interesting times. The BBC article below points out China is not backing down, and this has implications.

    South China Sea: Vietnam 'scraps new oil project'

    Vietnam has cancelled a major oil project in the South China Sea for the second time in a year, in the wake of Chinese pressure, the BBC has learned.
    Multinational companies in Spain and Malaysia supporting this effort will lose millions of dollars based on this decision.

    China is likely to regard this move as a significant victory. The Vietnamese decision seems to demonstrate that the recent show of force in the South China Sea by the United States has not changed Vietnam's strategic calculations.
    What used to work in the way of deterrence and dissausion, no longer works, why? Has China's confidence increased to the degree it is willing to risk armed conflict now? Do they perceive the U.S. and its security partners to be too weak to stop China from asserting their illegal claims on other countries?

    Malaysia, Brunei and the Philippines are all coming under pressure from China to concede "joint development" in areas where the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) gives them sole rights. So far all the South East Asian states have resisted the pressure.

    Vietnam has chosen to try to develop its fields alone and the result has been military threats from China and, now, a second climb-down, raising questions over Vietnam's offshore potential.
    I also recommending reading the most recent issue of "The National Interest" with its New Cold War cover. In addition to other articles, there are two articles on the state of the U.S. Navy due to under investment that is telling. There is no overnight fix either. Each article presents a different approach to fix it. One focuses on expanding the number of ships, while the other argues this isn't sustainable, so we must simply accept China's new role as a regional hegemon. I think there are a range of other options not discussed, but it is clear that almost two decades of GWOT has put our nation at significant risk, and we have little to show from 17 plus years of counterterrorism.
    Last edited by Bill Moore; 05-20-2018 at 08:31 PM.

  2. #2
    Council Member AdamG's Avatar
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    Dec 2005
    Hiding from the Dreaded Burrito Gang


    China is waging a 'quiet kind of cold war' against US, top CIA expert says

    Beijing doesn't want to go to war, a top CIA expert on Asia said, but the current communist government, under President Xi Jinping, is subtly working on multiple fronts to undermine the U.S. in ways that are different than the more well-publicized activities being employed by Russia.

    "I would argue ... that what they're waging against us is fundamentally a cold war -- a cold war not like we saw during THE Cold War (between the U.S. and the Soviet Union) but a cold war by definition," Michael Collins, deputy assistant director of the CIA's East Asia mission center, said at the Aspen Security Forum in Colorado.
    A scrimmage in a Border Station
    A canter down some dark defile
    Two thousand pounds of education
    Drops to a ten-rupee jezail

  3. #3
    Council Member davidbfpo's Avatar
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    Mar 2006



    Isn't there a big difference between these two 'Cold War' situations. In the first 'war' between the USA and USSR, the USA at times had considerable trade with the USSR, notably supplying wheat when crops failed in the late 70s & early '80s and the USSR had IIRC very little trade with the USA.

    In the second 'war' China is a huge exporter to the USA, notably in consumer goods - as we found two years ago in several stores e.g. Walmart. Yes the USA does trade with China, but not on the same scale. is it not hard to be at war when this situation applies? Not to ignore Chinese investments and the purchase of US Treasury bonds.

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