China Is Playing A Long Game, And It Is Playing For Keeps

The US seems to be finally waking up to what it has unleashed by opening up to China:

 

 

“Chinese strategists prize, in Kissinger’s words, “subtlety, indirection and the patient accumulation of relative advantage.” Chinese leaders have been pursuing what Pillsbury calls a “hundred-year marathon,” patiently trudging toward a goal of replacing the United States as the world’s dominant power — “hegemon” — by 2049, 100 years after Mao Zedong’s victory in the Chinese Civil War. So far, 65 years down, 35 to go.

In the meantime, “we don’t know we are losing the game.” In 2049, he says, China could have an economy three times the size of ours, could suppress dissent and squelch democracy not only in China but abroad, could export pollution and proliferate weapons without serious opposition.

Pillsbury doesn’t address the arguments that China’s rise may slow; that with an aging population it may get old before it gets rich; that with a smaller and more expensive work force it may sink into a static and deflationary economy like Japan’s. Nor does he grapple with predictions that China’s difficult language and subtle culture may prove less attractive than America’s more accessible English and popular culture.

He would presumably argue that it’s foolish to rely on such contingencies. Better, he says, to try to encourage China’s potential reformers and hope they overcome the ying pai hardliners who seem today even more dominant under Xi Jinping.

How to do that? Develop a competitive strategy and quit supporting China in acquiring technology. Support Chinese dissidents as Soviet and Eastern Bloc dissidents were supported in the Reagan years. Target Chinese corruption, censorship and pollution.

Most important, recognize that China’s leaders want not only to surpass but to suppress us and our way of life. A warning to take seriously.” (from the article)

Read the article here.