China is testing the waters. I have said before that China has a great advantage over its competitors on the world stage. They have a President-for-life, and they don’t have to worry about election results, despite espousing a democracy, because they are actually a pure dictatorship, albeit dressed up as a democracy. That means they can take a long-term view of their ambitions. Their history says they only move forward with their plans for dominance when an opportunity arises and, then, they move at a careful and studied snail’s pace. Their preference is to make these moves when no-one is looking, or when there is a major world distraction. The goal is to complete these moves before any effective reaction can surface.
This week was a case in point. China was testing the waters, again.
While the world was occupied with the U.S. Presidential elections, Beijing, translation Xi Jinping, ordered the Hong Kong Government to remove four members of the Hong Kong Legislature. These members were pro-democracy advocates, and Jinping decided, unilaterally, that their dissent violated the new national security law, that he imposed recently to eliminate all dissent in Hong Kong.
A small step towards total control of Hong Kong, but executed in an inexorable creep forward that typifies the Chinese mentality and strategy. The fact that the whole pro-democracy section of the legislature immediately resigned is commendable, but all Xi will do is smile. Even better!
If no-one notices, or just doesn’t think it is worth the effort to raise nasty questions at high levels, he continues to win, and, encouraged, he moves on to the next small step.
I commented in a previous blog that the distraction caused by the chaos of the U.S. Presidential elections was a great opportunity for China and for Russia to make strategic moves quickly and quietly. China did. Putin, apparently, missed his chance. Maybe he was too busy trying to support Trump, and undermine Biden.
It beggars belief that Western democracies do not appear to be taking Chinese threats seriously. There is plenty of evidence that China is on a planned path for domination at all levels. I realize this sounds a bit like comparing China to one of the baddies in a James Bond movie but all indications are that China thinks world domination is their destiny and, indeed, their right.
Paranoia? Absolutely, but that doesn’t mean it’s not true, and that we shouldn’t be taking concrete steps to foil China’s plan while we still can.
Taiwan is obviously their next target, although all their island-grabbing activity in the South China Sea is well underway. There are even indications that the preliminaries of an advance on Australia are in the works.
In the U.S., if China decided to call in all its loans overnight, America would have to file for bankruptcy. Xi won’t do that….yet, because China isn’t strong enough to survive the fallout, but they will be someday, if they are allowed to continue on their current course, unchecked.
Watch this space for more examples of China’s quiet and inexorable gobbling up of world assets. A long-term strategy that its competitors, the U.S. and the European Union cannot match, because their systems of Government require short-term administrative changes and their cultures have become used to soundbite thinking and planning.