October 19, 2023

Keep Your Eyes on China

The latest conflict in the Middle East is solidifying the new Axis of Evil.

With the horrific attack on Israel by the terrorist group Hamas that left more than 1,400 Israelis dead, the West is distracted from its most formidable foreign adversary, China. The Chinese have neglected to condemn the actions of the Islamic terrorists and instead are focusing on the Israeli countermeasures being carried out against Hamas in Gaza. As with Vladimir Putin and the Russian invasion of Ukraine, President Xi Jinping chooses to align himself with the side that is anti-West and would put a strain on U.S. resources.

This shouldn’t be a surprise to anyone. The Chinese have long been voicing their ambition to take over Taiwan (or take it back, in their view), and the U.S. has been the deterrent from that particular aggression. Beijing has been biding its time, and now it has the added boon of a weak and feckless U.S. president; ergo, its aggression has been largely unchecked.

Over the past two years, People’s Liberation Army (PLA) fighter jets have been “coercive” and “risky” in their behaviors toward U.S. fighter jets. More than 180 encounters with the PLA have resulted in antagonism and provocation on the part of PLA pilots. This is a significant acceleration in aggression.

The Chinese have been accused of infiltrating and subverting various Western democracies all over the world. This includes such countries as the UK, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, and even the U.S.

The infiltration of U.S. lawmakers’ confidences — such as Congressman Eric Swalwell’s (D-CA) relationship with a Chinese spy, and another was an aide to the late Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) — have been the most high profile in recent years, but other measures of less visibility have been perpetrated as well. Emails have been hacked. Military bases have been trespassed upon. Chinese companies have been buying up American farmland. Chinese influence peddling is suspected in President Joe Biden’s case as well. The espionage and influence of the Chinese is cause for alarm.

In September, China decided to up the ante on tensions in the South China Sea. Taiwan reported that swarms of Chinese fighter jets were doing practice runs over the Taiwan Strait in staged attempts to block U.S. aid to Taiwan during the long prognosticated invasion. China also used the month of September to antagonize the Philippines and try to lay claim to several islands and shoals belonging to that island nation.

This month, with the world’s eyes on Israel, China has taken the opportunity to solidify its alliance with Russia. Putin visited Beijing this week as part of Xi’s Belt and Road Initiative conference. The Belt and Road Initiative is Xi’s pet foreign policy project, and it’s a ruse for going into poorer third-world countries and economically enslaving them under the auspices of giving them infrastructure. This particular conference was an opportunity for the Russian dictator to visit his old friend and ally and discuss what was going on in the world and in the West.

All the while, in the background of China’s aggression and strong facade is the fact that its economy is crumbling under its feet. China has too much debt and its cities are rife with empty buildings. Furthermore, China’s restrictive policies toward foreign businesses are driving away more economic opportunity. When China’s economy is on the fritz, its usual solution is to go on the offensive against its neighbors.

As the Middle East threatens to boil over, both Xi and Putin have declined to condemn Hamas’s acts but have called for a ceasefire. Their positions are clear: The attacks on Israel are yet another symptom of why the West needs to be out of power and the East should be the next global hegemony. It would be deeply unwise for the West in general and the U.S. in particular to take their eyes off China.

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