At a time when the CCP is celebrating its centennial in high style, it makes little sense to continue discussing whether or when the CCP will collapse at a time of general decline in the West. Given the realities of China’s state, it is better to discuss what forces have helped China sit on its hands and the CCP has been able to maintain its core interest – the continuation of one-party dictatorship in China.
The U.S. Strategy Toward China Made China What It Is Today
If there is a force that has helped China grow and become the second largest economy in the world, it is of course the West, chief among them the United States.
During this century, the U.S. government has had at least two rounds of encounters (wars) with the Chinese Communist Party, the first of which occurred in the 1930s-1949, when the U.S. played the role of China’s rescuer. The result of this encounter was that the U.S. abandoned the Kuomintang and made the CCP. Mao published “Farewell, Stanton,” which was filled with the flirtatious statements of the victors, and the United States responded with the Acheson White Paper and the 2050 Report. The White Paper denounced the corruption of Chiang Kai-shek’s government for costing the U.S. China, while the 2050 Report blamed the State Department’s “Four Johns”, such as Fei Zhengqing and Xie Weisi, for making mistakes in U.S. policy toward China due to their misperceptions of the Chinese Communist Party.
The second round of encounters began in the 1970s, when the U.S. and Soviet Union were in the midst of the Cold War and the U.S. needed to be friendly with China in order to deal with the Soviet Union. After the end of the Cold War and the beginning of globalization, the United States welcomed China’s accession to the WTO and its international integration, and until 2016, the United States played the role of helping China rejoin the international community and recognizing it as a partner. During this period, the U.S. approach to China was basically defined as “engagement and cooperation, influence and change,” but only “cooperation” was put into practice, while “influence” was a formality. The theme song of the so-called “change” is “peaceful evolution – color revolution”.
From the result, the U.S. lost badly, and the color revolution with China basically failed, while the Chinese Communist Party’s red infiltration of the U.S. spread throughout the U.S. Washington, state and county politics, culture and academia, and all levels of society, finally putting itself in a very passive situation. China is undoubtedly the big winner, from poor to the world’s second largest economy, the challenge to the U.S. national strength is this stage of development, the challenge to the U.S. attitude is also in this period of development. China has finally come to this state: China dares to challenge almost any bottom line of the United States, while the United States can only shrink its bottom line and adopt “strategic ambiguity” in order to respond to it.
In a few decades, China has gone from being a poor and weak country with a large population to an aggressive challenger to the U.S. Merely blaming and condemning the Chinese Communist Party for not playing by international rules and pursuing its own interests by any means does not explain what has happened. At this point, the U.S. should look to itself for reasons. For nearly 20 years, I have placed the China issue in the international context and concluded that it is the strategic mistakes of the United States that have created a powerful challenger for itself, the most critical step being the admission of China to the WTO and the removal of its own barriers, while recognizing the differences in the political systems of China and the United States, allowing Chinese forces to drive into the United States, tolerating and acquiescing to the kind of unequal openness (in fact, semi-closedness) that China has towards the United States, and complacency. It has tolerated and acquiesced in China’s non-reciprocal openness (actually semi-closed) to the U.S., and complacently used it as a means to “influence and change” China within the U.S.
China’s Economy Gains Wings with WTO Accession
In December 2001, when China formally joined the WTO, its GDP in that year was $1.34 trillion, accounting for 4.0065% of the world’s total GDP; 18 years later, in 2019 (an epidemic in China in 2020), China’s total GDP is $14.28 trillion, accounting for 16.2763% of the world’s total GDP, and the development of China’s national power can be clearly perceived from this figure. China’s national strength can be clearly understood from this figure.
The benefits of China’s accession to the WTO are obvious, but China has taken advantage of the loopholes in WTO rules to almost completely change the world economic landscape and influence international politics. The 15th anniversary of China’s accession to the WTO in 2015 was a turning point, when governments and think tanks criticized China’s “protectionism” in three areas: China’s trade protectionism, unequal cross-border investment, the fact that China has the wind at its back in Europe and the United States, but has many restrictions on foreign investment, and China’s poor environmental protection.
This article is only about the fact that China has repeatedly violated the WTO, but the U.S., Europe and other countries can do nothing about it. The world’s largest trading nation has become a frequent guest in various WTO trade disputes, involving areas as large as steel, as medium as Brazilian pulp, as small as U.S. chicken claws, and many other areas. China in WTO Dispute Settlement
According to China Power, a Chinese foreign affairs publication, China has participated in 65 dispute settlements from 2002 to 2019 – 21 as a complaining party and 44 as a respondent – making it the third most active country in the dispute settlement mechanism during this period. China did not forget to confess its initial honest status: in the first five years after accession (2002-2006), China participated in dispute settlement only five times as a complaining or respondent party, a far lower number than other BRICS countries, playing mainly a third-party role. But what China did not explain is that the first five years after its accession to the WTO were an observation period, and its WTO membership was still unstable, so it had to bide its time.
China has participated in a total of 65 dispute settlements when it was a complainant or respondent. Of these, 39 were with the US and 14 were with the EU. 52.2 percent of the cases in which China was sued were initiated by the United States, and 76 percent of the 21 complaints initiated by China were against the United States. The complaints filed against China were mainly against government support and subsidies given to manufacturing and high-tech industries. The European Union, for example, launched a complaint against China in 2018, accusing it of forcing European companies to transfer technology to Chinese companies as a condition for entering the Chinese market.
The reason the U.S. and the EU are in a passive position is that China has eaten through the WTO rules as soft constraints, ruling that violations can only be made next to nothing, with no punitive measures. In knowing that the other side and their own existence of huge institutional and cultural differences, open the door, can only be said to be their own mistakes, especially China through is a thousand people program blatant theft of U.S. intellectual property rights, almost in the U.S. universities and research institutions under the indulgence of openly do it.
The two things the U.S. complains about China are both the result of cooperative acting at first
By 2015, China had jumped to second in the world in terms of total GDP, and China’s stock of outward foreign direct investment (OFDI) exceeded the trillion dollar mark for the first time, with investments in 184 countries and regions around the world, making it a net exporter of capital. at the end of 2019, China’s stock of OFDI reached $2.2 trillion, second to the United States ($7.7 trillion) and the Netherlands ($2.6 trillion). Total foreign exchange reserves once topped $3 trillion, which in huge foreign exchange reserves, allowed China’s outbound investment to grow rapidly.
China’s influence in global FDI continues to grow, with flows accounting for more than 10% of the world for four consecutive years and 10.4% in 2019. Two things have been complained about from the U.S. side during this period, one being that China subsidizes its exporters, putting U.S. firms at a competitive disadvantage. However, the U.S.-led World Bank conducted a privatization compliance study prior to China’s accession to the WTO, which recognized that Zhu Rongji’s “grasping the big and letting the small go” and fostering economic oligarchs in monopolistic industries for the Communist Party was privatization compliance. And China through the mixed reform of state-owned enterprises, so that state-owned enterprises cloaked in private clothing, investment in the United States. Huawei, for example, is essentially a military enterprise, but it wasn’t until after Trump became president that Huawei was considered truly blocked. Second, China’s exchange rate controls have led to an unreasonable ratio of the yuan to the dollar. But while the United States complained, it allowed the head of the International Monetary Fund to tailor a set of rules for China when it joined the organization: the IMF claimed that the main purpose of including the yuan in the SDR was to advance China’s economic and financial reforms. Two conditions need to be met for the inclusion of the RMB in the SDR: First, exports are at the top of IMF member countries, a condition met by China, the world’s largest exporter. The second is that the currency is freely convertible. For the sake of China, the IMF specially modified the rules of the game to “freely usable”. According to Reuters news agency, this is the clever idea of IMF president Christine Lagarde, but it is also indisputable that the United States is the largest contributor to the IMF and has a veto power that is not used.
Expectations of China’s democratization dominate U.S. policy toward China
The U.S. China studies community has basically two classic preconceptions about China: 1. China’s accession to the WTO would allow for rapid integration into the international community and prompt China to establish an open market economy; and 2. opening up Western Internet technology to China would help dismantle Chinese speech control. Both of these would ultimately facilitate China’s move toward democratization – a view originated by former President Clinton’s 2001 public speech at Hopkins University.
In support of China’s accession to the WTO, Clinton’s entire speech was intended to unsettle concerns about China in the U.S. and beyond. He started with the topic of “who lost China” and talked about all the problems that the American political and academic communities recognize about China, such as the one-party state, the intolerance of opposition, the denial of citizens’ basic rights to freedom of speech and religious expression, the control of the economy and thus the strong dependence of the people on the government, and the way the world defends its interests in a way that is very different from that of the West. The fear of a possible collapse of China, and so on. What to do? The young President Clinton confidently replied, “The question is not whether we agree with China’s practices, the question is, what is the wisest way to improve those practices?” He went on to mention that “China’s future path is its own choice. We cannot control that choice,” and “we can only influence it. We must recognize that we do have complete control over our own behavior. We can work to pull China in the right direction, or we can turn away. Almost certainly, ‘turning away’ would push China in the wrong direction,” President Clinton said, pointing out a bright path: “The WTO will move China in the right direction, and it will continue to advance what the United States has been trying to achieve in China for the past 30 years (i.e., since Nixon’s ice-breaking trip). It will continue to advance what the United States has been trying to achieve in China for the past 30 years (i.e., since Nixon’s ice-breaking trip).
Subsequent political changes in China have shown that these two preconceptions did not hold true, but the China-informed in U.S. politics and academia never examined them. It was not until 2017, when Trump announced a “100-day plan” after his election, that he explicitly proposed to “Drain the Swamp” (Drain the Swamp), and various reports related to China’s infiltration activities in the United States were published one after another. On November 29, 2018, the Hoover Institution at Stanford University released the report “Chinese Influence and U.S. Interests: Promoting Constructive Vigilance,” acknowledging that the U.S. China studies community has misjudged China, pointing out that China has used America’s open democracy to infiltrate and manipulate the U.S. government, universities, think tanks, media, businesses, and the diaspora, in the hope of blocking China’s influence. The report acknowledges that the U.S. China studies community has misjudged China, and that China has used America’s open democracy to infiltrate and manipulate the U.S. government, universities, think tanks, media, businesses, and the diaspora in the hope of blocking U.S. criticism of China and support for Taiwan.
The U.S. has finally tasted the loss of its international status: its traditional allies are leaving China, while its East Asian allies are following the “rely on the U.S. for political security, rely on China for economic development” policy; in the UN, China has successfully turned the WTO, the UN Commission on Human Rights, the WHO, etc. into tools to serve its own interests. In the United Nations, China has successfully turned the WTO, the UN Commission on Human Rights, the WHO, etc. into tools to serve its own interests. Tasting the results and tracing the source, it can only be said that the U.S. pursues the policy of “contact, cooperation, influence, and change” with China, thinking that it can “win without fighting”, and finally makes itself a Mr. Dong Guo who loses without fighting.