Monday, April 22, 2019

China's Rise Doesn't Automatically Mean China's Dominance

China is a rising power that could have an economy larger than America's by 2030, but they are a mere leaf on the wind depending on which way America blows.

This is an interesting article rightly noting that the rise of China threatens the world order America built after World War II, which benefits America. China wants its power to create a different world order that benefits them despite their rise in the American-led system. So that's good. But this is kind of nonsense:

Fearful that the United States has grown more determined to undermine his country’s rise, President Xi has doubled down on his determination to strengthen the Communist party’s hold domestically while advancing China’s global influence.

I really get sick of people who describe every foreign action as a reaction to an American action or lack of action, as if only America has the agency to make choices.

(So the Chinese just react and don't think decades ahead as we are constantly told?)

Xi's decisoin to strengthen party rule over China and to strengthen his own rule over the party have nothing to do with American actions to react to China's rise and potential threats to our allies in Asia.

So no, America is not to blame for China's clampdown at home. Their rulers are perfectly capable of being oppressive SOBs the way they have been for a couple millennia.

And while China is surely rising, as that article linked notes, most countries would rather side with America's view of the world than China's. So even if China is more powerful than America, America's superior geography combined with China's tough neighborhood means we can support neighbors of China to successfully resist pressure to bend the knee to China's power.