2003 March 25 Tuesday
China To Take Hard Line Against United States

CNN Senior China Analyst Willy Wo-Lap Lam says China will cut back on political and economic reform and move to a more confrontational posture toward the United States.

Until late last year, Beijing believed a confrontation with the U.S. could be delayed -- and China could through hewing to the late Deng Xiaoping's "keep a low profile" theory afford to concentrate almost exclusively on economic development.

"Now, many cadres and think-tank members think Beijing should adopt a more pro-active if not aggressive policy to thwart U.S. aggression," said a Chinese source close to the diplomatic establishment.

The Chinese govenment may place more sectors of the economy under greater government control and it will shift economic development in directions that will strengthen Chinese military power. There will be greater crackdowns on political dissent and the press will encourage anti-U.S. sentiments in the Chinese populace.

In light of Lam's report it seems less likely that China will try to rein in North Korea as the North Korean regime pursues its nuclear ambitions. It sounds like the Chinese leadership is more interested in challenging US attempts to pressure North Korea than to remove the cause of so much US concern.

Also see my previous post on Willy Wo-Lap Lam's views of Chinese thinking on North Korea.

Update: It case this isn't obvious: If Lam is correct about the direction of Chinese government thinking then that makes a war to take down the North Korean regime more necessary. It is still possible that China will act to reign in North Korea. But it seems unlikely at this point.

Share |      By Randall Parker at 2003 March 25 02:17 PM  Politics Grand Strategy


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