Sunday, August 5

The China USA conflict

When I was growing up son, the Olympics rivalry was Between the USA and USSR. Now the rivalry has morphed into one between USA and china. 

People write off USA at their peril, that country has some amazing properties and characteristics that gives it amazing strength in conflicts and competitions. 

One of the things you should try to understand is how East Germany, USSR or China, who created a state directed system to pick winners start failing when the state fails while USA's sports infrastructure, which is built up individual and ground up, keeps on working and producing champions. 

You have to learn and work in the USA son, otherwise your education will not be completed. 

Here's an Interesting episode from the time of the Balkan wars about china and USA. 



China Matters: Whatever You Do, Don’t Read China’s Global Times…

China Matters: Whatever You Do, Don’t Read China’s Global Times…

Saturday, November 05, 2011

Whatever You Do, Don’t Read China’s Global Times…

…You Might Learn Something

I’m not crazy about Global Times (the house organ of Chinese hypernationalism) but I like the sniggering condescension of Foreign Policy magazine(the house organ of neo-lioberalism) even less.

Actually, Christine Larson’s recent profile of Global Times in Foreign Policy is reasonably even-handed.

FP’s editors, however, couldn’t resist juicing the story—and signaling to its readership that GT and its views are not be taken seriously—by titling the piece “China’s Fox News” and adding a sidebar, “The Top 10 Screeds in China’s Global Times,” with takedowns by Uri Friedman.


Money Quote: ” Living in an international environment that China temporarily cannot change, we need to be alert to foreign interference as well as keep a sober mind, clean house and constantly improve governance … No country is fond of interference from the outside. China is no exception. In addition to hostile forces originating in foreign countries, China also has to face the mixed chorus formed by Tibet separatists, East Turkistan terrorists and the Falun Gong cult, who have gone abroad. Inner calm is specially needed when dealing with the collusions of the above-mentioned forces.”

Context: The editorial, which reflects on China’s rise in a globalized world, sounds a lot like the paranoia about foreign interference expressed by dictators during the Arab Spring. The appeal at the end to “inner calm” may sound tranquil, but one can’t help but wonder whether it’s a euphemism for a crackdown.

In case you don’t see the out-of-control dingbattery you’re supposed to detect in these excerpts, in the interest of full disclosure, I should say that I’m on Global Times’ side of the fence on about half of the pieces, which concern America’s cynical stirring of the South China Sea pot.

Pop Quiz:

Which nation is more likely to pose a long-term threat to freedom of navigation in the South China Sea?

China, which imports most of its oil through the region?

Or the United States, which routinely uses unilateral and multilateral sanctions as a tool of foreign policy, keeps a carrier strike force on tap in the west Pacific, has something of an obsession with bottling up the Chinese strategic nuclear submarine fleet stationed in Hainan, and adores the idea of building an anti-China bloc around the South China Sea conflict?

If you answered China, well, that puts you squarely in  Foreign Policy’s preferred demographic: people for whom the US system of liberal democracy and free market capitalism a priori put it in the right in any disagreement with China.

Nevertheless, the US model, which has recently displayed a pretty strong bias toward military coercion and financial dysfunction, has its own flaws.

The Occupy Wall Street movement has, I think, generated a certain amount of cognitive dissonance among Chinese democracy advocates.

The Chinese government can, of course, be mocked for its anxious banning of the word “Occupy” from search engines and microblogs.  Crowds of disgruntled, idealistic people showing up in high-profile downtown venues is the ultimate nightmare for the CCP.

At the same time, the OWS movement is a statement that US democracy in the age of Citizens United, runaway corporatism, and abjectly craven politicians is simply not delivering the goods for many Americans.

Hurrah!  Americans can impotently demonstrate against the fact that their system isn’t working!

Global Times has a pretty tough row to hoe, of course.  Authoritarianism and state capitalism are not popular among the Chinese or foreign intelligentsia.

But their writers are trying to make some sense out of the world beyond regurgitating government propaganda.

I was struck by a statement in a Global Times editorial on the OWS movement that I found charming in its awkward truthfulness:

Western countries can withstand street demonstrations better, since their governments are elected.

The editorial, presumably written by editor-in-chief Hu Xijin (according to Larson he keeps an iron grip on the editorial page) continues:

People think the street demonstrations will not lead to the overthrow of the Western political system. They are merely valves that can help ease pressure built up in democratic societies while the pressure and dissatisfaction on the streets could end up helping the opposition party seize office.

The conflicts may be minor or serious, but it will not bring significant change.

This is a fair argument, but it also reveals one of the core reasons why the western world lacks determination for real change. Political parties have been taking advantage of dissatisfaction in their societies, manipulating them to serve their own short-term political interests, rather than eliminating the causes.

It’s a worthwhile observation that democracy provides a measure of political stability but may also  serve as an obstacle to political and economic solutions by empowering forces that want to block a solution.

That’s something that Global Times, which is trying to make the case for the advantages of China’s authoritarian system, is eager to point out; it’s also something that liberal periodicals like Foreign Policy are constitutionally unable to confront.

Like I said, if you read Global Times you might learn something.

I have to admit what really set me off about the article was this passage, which also provided an interesting perspective on where Hu Xijin is coming from:

In 1989, Hu joined the People’s Daily as a reporter; from 1993-1996 he was a correspondent in Yugoslavia covering the war in Bosnia and Herzegovina. He returned to Beijing in 1996, and at age 36 joined the new Global Times newspaper as deputy editor.

… “But Global Times has been increasingly relevant since 1999,” says Anti, “since the bombing of the Chinese embassy in Yugoslavia.” — i.e., the accidental bombing of the Chinese embassy by U.S. and NATO forces, which stirred conspiracy theories in China and happened to take place in Hu’s old reporting stomping grounds.

That “i.e. the accidental bombing” is, to me, redolent of smug ignorance.  How dare China accuse us of bombing their embassy!

There is plenty of evidence—including an investigative report by England’s The Observer, presumably amply endowed with North Atlantic neoliberal cred in the eyes of FP—that the bombing was intentional and, indeed, was a watershed in elite Chinese attitudes toward the United States.

Because of Foreign Policy’s transgressions, I must perforce repost one of my articles on the Belgrade bombing, with a few minor edits:

Friday, January 26, 2007

Why China Hates Satellite Guided Munitions, Part 1: The Bombing of the Chinese Embassy in Belgrade in 1999


Read further.

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