GOOD MORNING FROM LONDON
Jake Sullivan is the US National Security Adviser and meets today in Rome, Italy with China’s top Foreign Policy Official – Yang Jiechi. They have famously met before in Alaska when Yang looked Sullivan (and Anthony Blinken) in the eye and told him “Don’t Talk Down to China”. It was a landmark moment in International Relations and emphasised the end of the National Humiliation heaped on China by the West.
Critics of China often overlook China’s own lengthy experience of dealing with opponents. Todays China draws so readily on the experience of the Party’s previous leaders in dealing with the Kuomintang (KMT) during the Three Civil Wars between 1927 + 1949 interspersed with the coming together – temporarily – of the Party and the KMT in their joint + successful efforts to expel Japan from China between 1937 + 1945. China is experienced at dealing with its opponents, enemies, and adversaries.
The scales will have fallen from Sullivan’s eyes in Alaska. He now has the measure of the strength + determination of the delegation sitting on the opposite side of the table. In the Opium Wars of the 19th Century, China was weak and exploited as Western powers poured opium into the heads of millions of Chinese citizens to pay for porcelain and tea and other key commodities demanded by Western Traders. Opium from India instead of US dollars and UK sterling from the US/UK brought China to its knees.
The US remains China’s opponent. US policy is to hold back China from becoming the leading economic power in the world and to restrain its advances in developing relations in Africa and Latin-America. Imperialisms come and go – a glance back at History tells us the truth.
But the US makes one important mistake. China is not the Coming Imperialism or the New Imperialism or the Successor to the US. The world is quite different in the 21st Century to the world of the 19th Century.
NEXT POST – 15 MARCH 2022