The world was changing anyway; the Covid-19 and the policies of Trump administration have just accelerated the process.
The Covid-19 has eaten the entrails of economies of most of the countries. Many of those countries will not be able to restart their economies on their own. China with its BRI (Belt and Road Initiative), and the proven record of matching its words with its deeds, is the natural choice in the long haul reconstruction.
President Trump of USA is successfully herding countries and nations toward China and Russia.
The USA under Trump is the magician that has lost its hat and wand. The spell is broken.
The countries and nations have discovered that they can make their own choices.
The world needs choices to function, and the choices have been created:
On one side there are threats, sanctions, pressure, shaming, and bullying.
On the other side, there is a wide range of funding and infrastructure, already promising to connect more than 160 countries in a global economic system where everyone can retain their independence with dignity while fully benefiting from the connectivity.
The bluff has been called. The avalanche is about to begin.
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The USA is on the brink of implosion under the combined weight of its ethnic divide, fiscal burdens, shrinking circle of friends, diminishing ability to impose its will on the world, and ‘exceptionalism.’
It is an empire heading toward premature demise. So much of goodwill, so much of promise – all going down the drain.
In the classic fashion of empires in their last days, the USA is looking for a war. However, the major flaw here is that the USA cannot afford four major wars simultaneously.
Moreover, if the USA hopes that its conflict with its adversaries will turn into a world war, it may or may not be a viable hypothesis.
There are four countries that have defied the USA openly – China, Russia, Turkey, and Iran.
These are all powerful countries in their own right. They also have deep interaction with each other that makes them natural allies. They have their own circles of friends and zones of influence. Starting a fight with one of them will quite likely pull the others into the fray, directly or indirectly.
The challenge for these countries is to remain defiant of the USA and at the same time prevent the outbreak of a war. They constraint they have exercised so far, indicates that they can possibly do so.
For now, let’s look at the risks for China.
China is slated to be the number one economy in the world within the next three years. This is to the absolute disliking of the USA and some other countries.
The USA thinks that pulling China into a major war and inducing internal turmoil would slow down the economic rise of China. This is the American way of doing things.
There can be five areas where the trouble can be ignited: 1. South China Sea, 2. Taiwan, 3. Tibet, 4. Xinjiang, and 5. Hong Kong.
Of these, Taiwan, Tibet, Hong Kong and Xinjiang are internal matters. Suitable adjustment in the policies and flexibility in approach can help solve the issues.
The potential hotspot is the South China Sea.
The USA wants to shape the conflict in such a way that the countries bordering the South China Sea will be pulled into it. This is the trap China must avoid at all costs. This can be done by creating a council of the South China Sea countries. It will not be easy but it is doable.
The principle here is that you cannot leave your neighbourhood. The South China Sea countries – China, Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Brunei, Singapore, and Vietnam – have to remain where they are and the USA is not their neighbour by any sense of the word.
The USA will also try to pull its European allies – NATO – into the war with China. It might even succeed to some extent.
Nevertheless, every country in the world, Europe being no exception, understands that a war in the back-to-back scenario with Covid-19 is the last thing this world needs. It would be sheer madness.
Peace is always the joint responsibility and in the present situation China will have to step forward to strengthen the global peace. It is the role that China must play in this changing world. Except for a handful of countries, everyone would gladly join China for the sake of shared peace.
There is the need to use an existing platform or create a new platform to coordinate the rebuilding of the economies and societies after Covid-19.
We already understand that the coronavirus is not going anywhere. We must learn to live with it. For this to happen there must be a reliable vaccine that can be made available free of cost or at nominal cost to everyone in the world. China is among the countries that have believably developed the Covid-19 vaccine. By making it available to everyone, China can win instant friendship and trust of even the staunchest of its adversaries.
The post-Covid recovery is a challenge that demands a solution the size of BRI of China. It just happens that BRI is already in place and no other solution is anywhere in sight.
China, with like minded countries such as Russia, Turkey, and Iran and the international and regional financial institutions, can tailor individual plans for the economic recovery of every country.
There is the vacuum of global leadership. If China steps up to the role, it will not be replacing the USA.
The idea of one country determining the agenda and fate of every country in the world must die its natural death now.
The consistent policy of China has been the partnership on the basis of equality, and creation of win-win situations for all. If China fills the vacuum of global leadership, it will be one among the equals, fully respecting the importance and individuality of every country and every nation.
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The State Council Information Office of China has published a paper titled “China’s National Defense in the New Era.”
The Closing Remarks of the paper: “Peace is an aspiration for all peoples, and development is an eternal theme of humanity. Faced with global security challenges that are becoming ever more intricate and choices that have to be made at a crossroads of human development, China firmly believes that hegemony and expansion are doomed to failure, and security and prosperity shall be shared. China will remain committed to peaceful development and work with people of all countries to safeguard world peace and promote common development.” /// nCa, 27 July 2020