China's growth was bound to falter. The problem comes when the growth that the Chinese Communist Party turned into a justification for their monopoly on power in place of waning communist ideology falls too much to keep their people in line under that implicit deal.
Here we go:
The most important driver of events in 2017 could very well be the Chinese economy, which is shaking the country’s political system and affecting its external policies.
Beijing, which once thought it would dominate the world, has been playing defense for the last year and a half as almost no economic trend has been going its way.
The economic problem long foretold could finally be arriving. Or maybe not, I suppose, this year. Predictions, especially of the future, are hard, eh?
But I don't think we should simply say that internal problems could affect the external policies. That is not enough to cover the linkage.
In reality, all things that affect the continued rule by the Chinese communists are simply part of a continuum of threats that they see. And the result they desire is the survival of that primacy.
Can we fathom that China could start a war with America that the Chinese rulers know they would lose if it stokes nationalism that bolsters Chinese Communist Party legitimacy?
Can we see problems from China's view and appreciate that what doesn't make sense for us could make sense for them?