FOR a country that prides itself on its “peaceful rise”, it was an odd way to celebrate a birthday. The People’s Republic of China marked its diamond jubilee on October 1st with a staggering display of military muscle-flexing (see article). Goose-stepping soldiers, tanks and intercontinental ballistic missiles filed through Tiananmen Square, past the eponymous Gate of Heavenly Peace, where, 60 years ago, as every Chinese schoolchild is taught (wrongly, it now seems), Mao Zedong declared that the Chinese people had “stood up”.
For many Chinese, daily life remains a grim struggle, and their government rapacious, arbitrary and corrupt (see article). But on the world stage, they have never stood taller than today. China’s growing military, political and economic clout has given the country an influence of which Mao could only have dreamed. Yet Chinese officials still habitually complain that the world has not accepted China’s emergence, and wants to thwart its ambitions and “contain” it. America and others are trapped, lament these ascendant peaceniks, in a “cold-war mentality”. Sometimes, they have a point. But a bigger problem is that China’s own world view has failed to keep pace with its growing weight. It is a big power with a medium-power mindset, and a small-power chip on its shoulder.
Fortunately, the Asians have learned to be more vocal defending their views and exercising independent thinking rather than kow-tow to big brothers that seem to be more clever and eloquent in their arguments. Look at these three comments to that article, surely you can feel the heat and passion.
I don't get it, Economist. Early on in the article, you whine at not knowing "What message was it meant to convey to an awestruck world?"
Finally, you begrudgingly recognize that "its main audience was not the outside world, but China’s own people."
It's so disingenuous to flip the tone of the entire article around at the last moment. China wasn't looking to push anyone around, nor does it care much about political influence it can wield outside its own borders. It is fully focused on improving itself, I dare say as any good capitalist country should be like, as well.
The Economist must love hypocrisy. How else can my country (America) proclaim to be freedom-loving and laissez-faire yet be heavily involved in changing the "hearts and minds" of the world?
The Economist also runs thin at trying to explain just what it doesn't like about China, apart from its political system. It does admit the stimulus worked, but complains it was "without debate." However, the Economist also supports universal-healthcare in America, but doesn't acknowledge our system of debate has all but destroyed this legislation.
Because we are raised in a society to think a certain way, it may be hard to think outside the box. "Benevolent dictatorship" may seem like an ancient and archaic political system, but keep in mind, if you are of the "Big Three" monotheistic religions, you already acknowledge that to be your preferred method of rule.
I wish for more checks and balances in the PRC and CCP, but they are coming. The world's impatience to deal with China's slow rise will not hasten political or economic reform, but simply create friction. Step back, relax, and let another country be free to deal with matters how it always has.
It looks like China didn't or does not know how to rule her country and only the west knows the best!
When China was weak, the hegemony west and Japan termed her "the sick man of East Asia", may I ask who cared about the poor and pitiful China during and before l949!? And China was almost carved into pieces and who cared and spoke for China!?
Did any western country or Japan ever tasted the bitterest bitter that their king's bed was sleeping and had fun with the local woman by an invader-general!? Where was the Chinese pride? Only humiliation and humiliation!!!
General MacArthur didn't sleep in Japanese Emperor's bed!!!
In Shanghai and other cities that the west and Japanese took up the lease territories and proclaimed with signboard of "No entry for Chinese and dogs"; The poor and pitiful Chinese were classified as DOG and who aided Chinese with a kind word!?
In l949, when Mao took over mainland, UK tested him with two destroyers sailing into Yantze River but escaped with Mao's consent not to engage the west when the nation was just to be established; The economic embargo etc....... to ratchet the China's rising can anyone with reasonable mind and professed human rights and democracy dare to say all were and are righteous!?
After inception, PRC never invaded any bordering nation except in defense of her integrity and what was wrong in defending her integrity!? Xinjiang and Tibet were long long ago historically and legally part and parcel of China; Those who critical China with invasion of these two territories, please refer proper history books and maps written by your westerners before opening your childish mouths!!!
The China had not owed the world anything but the western world and Japan due to her countless historical and moral obligation to understanding her and not just smearing with lopsided views and hostility!
If Japan were to compensate the war torn China, Japan cannot repay and would be forever poor for 100 years or more and which prompted US manipulated San Francisco Treaty indemnified Japan but both KMT and CCP govt of China didn't ink that paper!
The US was rich enough and generous for her political views but why sacrifice China who badly in need of monies to rebuilt her dilapidated vast land!?
What a piece of ignorant hypocritical crap!
If this country (China) did not show some deterrent force, some savages (such as England) would be trying to colonize them or knocking at their door pushing opium with their gunboats.
Go read some history before you write such stupid article.