I seldom run across an article that says what I think as well as this one that showed up in the papers on the weekend: Power to the party as China mangles history. Kind of a cryptic title, but if you read it through, and I encourage you to do that, the real message is that China today is best understood by seeing it as a communist tyranny who would like to dominate other nations and not by looking at its ancient history and culture. Chinese history and culture are a wonderful legacy from the past, but in dealing with the Chinese leadership today, it is only their warlord mentality that should matter. The rest is just there to mislead those who are prepared to ignore every warning sign that ought to be flashing in everyone’s eyes. This comes right in the middle of the article, but is the core message:
Once we recognise that the differences that divide Australia from People’s China are not differences of culture or civilisation but differences of ideology, political values and systems of government, we can be confident we have encountered this kind of historical struggle before.
Yes, we need to master history and culture — the history of Chinese and international communism and of modern mass nationalism, and the culture of Leninism. And while we should avoid spinning ourselves a Western version of Ding’s civilisational yarns, we can draw on the civilisational resources of an inclusive liberal democracy — Western and Eastern resources, classical and religious, historical and modern — to expose this .
I can see how attractive all this money and investment is to all those places on the receiving end, but I wish just occasionally I felt someone was saying, I can see what’s in this for me, but what’s in this for them? Buying off a few people in high places comes really cheap for China, but other than for those selling us out, there is absolutely nothing in it for everyone else