“The supreme act of war is to subdue the enemy without fighting.”-The Art of War
John Ratcliffe, the former Director of National Intelligence, said in 2020 that “China poses the greatest threat to America today and the greatest threat to democracy and freedom worldwide since World War II. The intelligence is clear. Beijing intends to dominate the U.S. and the rest of the planet economically, militarily, and technologically.”
Xi Jinping Consolidates Power
At the recently concluded Chinese Communist Party Congress, China’s ruling Communist Party (CCP) amended its constitution cementing President Xi’s power by giving him an unprecedented third term as party general secretary.
Xi previously amended the constitution in 2017, when he incorporated an ideology with his name, “Xi Jinping Thought,” into the constitution, putting him on par with Mao and Deng.
Xi embarked on a final round of purges ahead of the CCP Congress, wielding his long-running anti-corruption campaign.
Xi vowed to root out dishonest officials when he became leader a decade ago. Since then, this thinly veiled political tool has been used to eliminate more than 1.5 million rivals. These purges have ensured Xi’s absolute control over personnel and policy.
Retired Marine Major General Arnold Punaro has warned “China has not only modernized their military, but they have quadrupled their military while our military is 50 percent smaller than it was during the peak of the Reagan buildup. We are drowning in bureaucracy and waste.”
China’s military dwarfs that of the United States in the Indo-Pacific theatre.
The “2023 Index of U.S. Mililtary Strength” downgraded the U.S. military’s overall power to “weak” for the first time. The report, published by the think tank The Heritage Foundation, said the downgrade was due to a combination of underfunding, outdated equipment, lack of training, and years of poor leadership in Washington.
The CCP is building up its nuclear arsenal. Experts in the U.S. do not think China is building up its nuclear forces for deference but global domination.
Peter Pry, a nuclear strategist at the think tank Center for Security Policy, warned that the U.S. has taken a “30-year-holiday” in modernizing its nuclear arsenal, providing China the time to develop capabilities to match and overcome U.S. defenses.
Control of the South China Sea
The CCP lays claim to almost all of the South China Sea, despite a 2016 ruling by an international court finding its territorial claimes were unlawful. The South China Sea is one of the world’s major shipping routes.
American Elites Have Been Bought
According to Peter Schweitzer, author of “Red-Handed: How American Elites Get Rich Helping China,” the CCP relies heavily on a strategy of buying powerful figures in American politics and business to extend its influence.
“The strategy is to buy off the elites in the United States by giving them lucrative deals and special access to the Chinese market,” Schweitzer says.
Chad Wolf, then Acting Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security, warned in 2020 that “the CCP views the United States as a political and ideological threat and seeks to destroy the United States. Ourt struggle with the CCP is nothing short of a civilizational conflict.”
Photo by Caireen Burns