In October, at 20th National Party Congress of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), General Secretary Xi Jinping set himself up for another decade as China’s most powerful leader since Mao Zedong, replaced his most economically literate Politburo colleagues with a phalanx of loyalists, and enshrined the Stalinist-Maoist concept of “struggle” as a guiding principle in the Party Charter. The effect was to turn the page on “reform and opening,” the term the CCP uses to describe the economic liberalization that began in the late 1970s and led to the explosive growth of the Chinese economy in the past four decades.
The contest between democracies and China will increasingly turn on the balance of dependence; whichever side depends least on the other will have the advantage.
At the party congress, Xi was granted a third term as the CCP’s top leader—an unprecedented development in the contemporary era and a crucial step in his effort to centralize authority. But perhaps even more significant was the way the congress served to codify a worldview that Xi has been developing over the past decade in carefully crafted official party communications: Chinese-language speeches, documentaries, and textbooks, many of which Beijing deliberately mistranslates for foreign audiences, when it translates them at all. These texts dispel much of the ambiguity that camouflages the regime’s aims and methods and offer a window into Xi’s ideology and motivations: a deep fear of subversion, hostility toward the United States, sympathy with Russia, a desire to unify mainland China and Taiwan, and, above all, confidence in the ultimate victory of communism over the capitalist West. The end state he is pursuing requires the remaking of global governance. His explicit objective is to replace the modern nation-state system with a new order featuring Beijing at its pinnacle.
Read the full article from Foreign Affairs.
More from CNAS
To Help Afghanistan, Engage Its Political Opposition
The effort to help Afghans shape a better alternative should begin now....
By Richard Fontaine & Lisa Curtis
The Fall and Rise of the Quad
The Quad has become the linchpin of US strategy to maintain peace and stability in the Indo-Pacific and to counter increased Chinese aggression and hegemony....
By Lisa Curtis
Ukraine, Japan and the Korean War’s 21st-Century Parallel
Rather than foreshadowing deadlier and more destructive wars to come, Ukraine’s struggle could provide the path to averting them....
By Vance Serchuk
What Are The Opportunities & Challenges In India-US Ties?
Lisa Curtis joins Times Now to discuss the issues and the opportunities that continue to dominate the relations between India and the USA. Watch the full interview from Times...
By Lisa Curtis