I’ve been considering writing this post for a long time, ever since Trump won the election back in November. Repeatedly since then, China has been making moves and decisions that I can’t help but applaud. Somewhat, at least…even as I watch proceedings with a growing sense of doom. I was inspired to finally try and write something about all these political power-plays after reading an article which stated that Xi Jinping would like to re-establish a Palestinian capital in East Jerusalem, alongside a large amount of new aid funds being sent to the Palestinian people worst affected by Israel’s pressures on their native lands. Obama quietly sent 221 million dollars in aid to the Palestinian Authority literally hours before leaving office, which suggests Trump’s snubbing of the ailing semi-state was something he was aware of.
Trump calls on Taiwan, ignores Palestine, so as to fully counter his predecessor, and Xi calls on Palestine, ignores Taiwan. The game goes on.
Traditionally, China has not acted as a Globalist nation. Not in recent years, and not in distant history, either. China has always meant #ChinaFirst, even if this is a slogan America has inherited for the Trump era. The list of military action under China’s belt pales in comparison to the U.S. There have been instances, such as during the Vietnamese war, when China have acted decisively. The Chinese invaded north Vietnam and “opened the door to Hanoi.” After the war, they pulled back. Something similar happened when they invaded Burma in the 16th century. They advanced, conquered, and retreated, declaring Burmese independence. Beyond their initial acquisitions of territory long, long ago, during some distant dynasty, when us Westerners still lived in mud shacks, China has stayed relatively static. Why would they need to expand? They’ve got all the natural resources they need.
What we can evaluate, safely and without preconception or assumption, are China’s recent announcements concerning green energy. They’re going to invest billions of dollars into wind energy, solar energy and nuclear energy. Already a world leader in both wind and solar, it’s likely that they will also become the world leader in nuclear energy by 2020. The state has a target of achieving %15 green energy efficiency. For such a large country that has arguably just undergone it’s own industrial revolution, this is seriously impressive. Even so, it is difficult to acknowledge these achievements without considering some context. Air pollution in China is awful. Really, really awful. Sure, there are areas in Western China where the sky is clear and blue and the air is fresh and clean, but in their major population centres, where vast amounts of people live, the situation is pretty diabolical. We have to assume that these green energy measures are, once more, about putting China first.
You only have to consider, historically, the Great Wall of China, their own great “firewall” on the Internet and the new, man-made islands they’re constructing in the South China Sea, populated by missile defence systems incapable of launching ICBMs (apparently), to see that China has little interest in the acquisition of new territory, or any ambition to go to war at all. The islands are being constructed with the intention of securing its trade routes, not providing a missile base from which to attack. This might be a hasty assumption. Who knows the workings of the Chinese State? What we can assume from the vast, unimaginable amounts of money the Chinese are making from international trade deals, especially with the U.S, that they are in no rush to destroy their relationships with the West. So where will their disputes be solved? Where in the world could act as a stage for grossly powerful superpowers to show off their Destroyer-sized genitalia?
I think you can guess.
To really get into the meat and grit of this miserable situation, I’ll go back to a point I mentioned earlier. Jinping’s announcements concerning the Israel-Palestine conflict. I like it, because Palestine has been a point of contention for too long. People get extremely opinionated about this so I will not delve too deep. Only know that any native people that are displaced and forced from their homes by foreign invaders will receive my utmost sympathy (let alone being unashamedly bombed by vastly superior weapon systems provided by a far-off superpower, but, look, I said I didn’t want to get into this). But we must evaluate it’s political significance, not it’s moral significance. This comes as a new move for China, who is keen to express its denial of Trump and so offers its hand in the Middle-Eastern conflict. They’re holding discussions with Iran, who were just denied a nuclear deal by America, in a few weeks time. All this comes shortly after a Chinese diplomat has suggested China is willing to take over the “reins”, as it were, of world leadership, now that Trump has been inaugurated. Johnny Donny won’t like that.
These issues are extremely dense. And, unfortunately, the middle east is where they will play out. As has always been the way. One takes a move, and it is matched, bombs fall, the blame is shifted, and no one is ever really taken accountable for any of the atrocities caused. In a truly Trump move, his administration has announced it will move the U.S Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, effectively siding with the Jews and denouncing the Arabs, as it confirms Jerusalem as the country’s capital. America’s preference of the Israeli state has long been obvious, but Obama and Clinton had the sense to remain as impartial as possible. Trump – not so subtle. For dealing with car manufactures or illegal immigrants this might be suitable for the American people, this brashness, but when your words have an impact on a small village on the other side of the world? The destruction of schools and hospitals? It pays to be subtle. Less people die that way. As Trump was sworn in, Russia increased its military presence in Syria. On top of this, China begins to potentially get further involved (because who knows how involved China is right now?) introducing yet another superpower to the playground of sand.
These are difficult times we’re facing. In a leaked CIA document, Trump was noted to have been talking about the failures of the last government in allowing IS to keep hold of the Iraqi oil-fields. If Russia is increasing its manpower in Syria, we can only imagine the U.S will follow suit. If anything, Trump appears to be a man of his maniacal word. If he says he’ll destroy IS, I imagine he’ll try his very hardest. Only, I’ve got a disgusting suspicion that this is going to create something much larger, something much darker, which has been looming on the horizon ever since the commencement of the Cold War, to come to the fore. It seems like all we can do to prevent this is to hold on and buy more stuff from each other. Build a train from New York to Moscow, Moscow to Beijing. Then we’ll see who wants to fight each other. Spend the money used towards razing the Middle East and build better connections between nations.
I’ve said it before, recently, but I’ll say it again.