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Hong Kong Grandstanding & Grand Strategy

November 28, 2019

On Wednesday, November 27, the day before Thanksgiving, President Trump signed legislation aimed at punishing Chinese officials acting against protestors in Hong Kong. Of three thorns in the side of American foreign policy–Vladimir Putin, the Maoist totalitarian regime in the People’s Republic of China and a radical Islamic regime in Iran–the totalitarian regime in the PRC presents the greatest long term threat to America’s national interest.

Constraining the long term goals of the PRC that aim to disarm South Korea, install a Maoist regime on the Republic of China and punish Japan is the preeminent foreign policy goal of the United States. Only the PRC’s dependency on foreign trade and vigorous defense of South Korea and Japan can forestall another land war in Asia.

With concessions to the PRC by the Nixon Administration, described as “opening up” China to trade with the West, and granting of diplomatic recognition to the PRC by President Carter, the United States affirmed the reality of totalitarian control of China and consigned generations of Chinese to lives of subordination to controls on every aspect of human life by a Communist regime.

Only Hong Kong retained a glimmer of human freedom until protests against Communist control brought Hong Kong and its citizens to the attention of the world.

The temptation by official Washington to side with Hong Kong protestors was too strong to resist. Protests are cheap, however, and do not require military action. So President Trump went along with the crowd, probably understanding that he would hurt the feelings of his “friend,” Xi Jinping, the Maoist despot in control of the PRC’s Communist Party.

It remains to be seen how badly the PRC needs vital trade relations with the United States. In the short term, the PRC may stall expanding trade relations. In the long term, say in the next ten years, totalitarian control of Chinese citizens will be tested just like it is being tested in Hong Kong today. Only trade can satisfy the very human desire for improvement in the lives of Chinese people held captive to Communist control.

So, yesterday’s actions against the government of Hong Kong will not affect long term relations between the United States and the PRC. But, after a full supper and a good night’s rest, the people of China will ask about freedom of religion, of education and travel.

If there is a wall in Beijing where the desires for freedom can be written, some day the people of China will write on that wall in the blood of their tormentors.

 

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