Home LATEST NEWS China is on the move, the West no longer knows which foot...

China is on the move, the West no longer knows which foot to step on

88
0

More aggressive mobilization

Elbridge Colby served as Assistant Under Secretary of Defense for Strategy and Force Development under the Trump administration (2017-18). He is worried about the growing influence of China.% of the world market, if it achieves hegemony in Asia, it will be dominant in the whole world, “,” text “:” China’s goal is to become a hegemon, at least in Asia, and as Asia will soon represent more than 50% of the world market, if it achieves hegemony in Asia, it will be dominant in the whole world, “}}”>China’s goal is to become a hegemon, at least in Asia, and as Asia will soon account for over 50% of the world market, if it achieves hegemony in Asia, it will be dominant worldwide. , he asserts.

It is not just possible, it is rather highly probable, unless we take steps to avoid it.

A quote from Elbridge Colby, former Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense

Militarily, however, the Chinese are nowhere near catching up with the Americans. Their military budget (252 billion US dollars) is the second in the world, but far behind that of the United States (778 billion).

A submarine with Chinese flags.

A Chinese military ballistic missile launcher submarine during a military demonstration in the South China Sea (on file).

Photo: Reuters / CHINA STRINGER NETWORK

The Americans have a very significant qualitative and quantitative lead in terms of military equipment, believes Marc Julienne, researcher, responsible for China activities at the Asia Center of the French Institute of International Relations (IFRI). Beijing is however catching up quickly. The Chinese are building a third aircraft carrier and have an impressive arsenal of ballistic missiles.

Is the threat real?

Washington is probably adding a little more in order to justify its policy towards Beijing, underlines Marc Julienne. On the other side, China is doing it too, taking a discourse of power in which she repeats to whoever wants to hear her that she is a great power and that she is able to face any provocation, including on the military level, emphasizes the researcher.

If the West is to prevent China from dominating the region, which it is currently trying to do, it must act quickly, working with regional allies such as India, Vietnam, South Korea and Japan, to establish a better balance of power, says Colby. Currently, we talk a lot, but we act little, he laments.

We make many statements about China, but in reality our military position is frozen. There are more words than actions.

A quote from Elbridge Colby, author of The Strategy of Denial: American Defense in an Age of Great Power Conflict

The United States should minimize its military presence in the Middle East and Europe in order to focus on Asia, he believes, while pushing the Japanese and Taiwanese to increase their own defense budgets. These are things that we said we were going to do, but are not happening.

Three American soldiers run, pointing their assault rifles, through the streets of a village in Lithuania.

The Europeans should assume more of their defense within NATO so that the Americans can deploy their troops elsewhere, Colby believes.

Photo: Reuters / Ints Kalnins

On the contrary, does not massaging American troops in the region risk provoking Beijing?

Very possible, thinks Marc Julienne, responsible for China activities at IFRI’s Asia Center. China’s military emergence and strategic assurance are of great concern. On the other hand, I don’t know if the best way to answer it is to overbid, especially military.

Is the American method the right one, in the sense that it will make it possible to re-establish a strategic balance favorable to the United States and to push China back in its ambitions and objectives? I am afraid, on the contrary, that this will push China to increase its military development and to assert a little more its power and its coercion on its neighbors.

On the vision of China, we can quite easily agree. But as to which method to use, I am not at all sure.

A quote from Marc Julienne, researcher at the Asia Center of the French Institute of International Relations

A real coalition

We must talk to China’s neighbors to exert political pressure in the context of partnerships and international organizations, advocates Mr. Julienne. Quite the opposite of what was done with AUKUS (an alliance between Australia, the United Kingdom and the United States), a pact negotiated secretly in the face of the allies, which risks weakening existing alliances, including NATO, believes the researcher.

Scott Morisson, in front of a lectern.  On screens placed on both sides, Boris Johnson and Joe Biden.

Australian Prime Minister Scott Morisson, his British counterpart Boris Johnson (left) and US President Joe Biden (right) at the virtual event where the new AUKUS alliance was announced.

Photo: The Canadian Press / AP / Mick Tsikas

French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian spoke of a stab in the back in reference to this partnership, which involves the sharing of artificial intelligence, cybernetic capabilities and quantum technologies.

In addition to France, which lost a submarine contract worth nearly $ 84 billion, countries in the region, such as Indonesia, the Philippines, Singapore, Malaysia, but also Japan and South Korea, should have known before the announcement, he believes.

This is a funny signal sent to the allies of the United States, which they need in the Indo-Pacific.

A quote from Marc Julienne, researcher at the Asia Center of IFRI

Mr. Julienne instead advocates an approach that takes into account the reality of these countries, which are very dependent on China economically.: you are with us or against us. “,” text “:” They do not want to have a cold war choice between China and the United States, since they need to trade with China and need the States -United as a security partner. But we have the feeling that the American approach is a zero-sum game: you are with us or against us. “}}”>They don’t want to have a cold war choice between China and the United States, since they need to trade with China and need the United States as a security partner. However, we have the feeling that the American approach is a zero-sum game: you are with us or against us.

The European strategy, presented this autumn, takes into account economic issues, climate change management and environmental issues, not just military and security aspects, argues Mr. Julienne.

It is a vision based on peace, cooperation and dialogue. It should not be naive, but it is inclusive, that is, it is not closed to China.

A quote from Marc Julienne, researcher at the Asia Center of IFRI

What role for Canada?

Canadian and Chinese flags.

Relations between Canada and China are at their lowest since Meng Wanzhou’s arrest in December 2018.

Photo: Associated Press / Fred Dufour

Elbridge Colby is surprised not to see Canada playing a more important role in the fight against Chinese hegemony.

If you look at the Five Eyes [Alliance des Cinq yeux, qui inclut les États-Unis, le Canada, le Royaume-Uni, l’Australie et la Nouvelle-Zélande], you will see that the United Kingdom and Australia are very active, while on the Canadian side, not much is happening, he notes.

Canada, however, had to come up against Chinese ways of doing things with the arbitrary detention, in 2018, of Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor, imprisoned in China after the arrest in Canada of Meng Wanzhou, financial director of Chinese telecoms giant Huawei, at the request of the American authorities.

Given Canada’s past commitments, its silence on this issue is striking, believes the analyst. He remains hopeful that the country will engage more resolutely in the defense of our interests.

If the United States is afraid of China, Canada should certainly be afraid of it too.

A quote from Elbridge Colby, former Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense

The Liberal government has yet to set its Asia-Pacific strategy, promised during the election campaign and eagerly awaited by several sectors.

Previous articleHarry Reid, former Democratic leader of the US Senate, dead at 82
Next articleIsrael unveils series of “confidence-building measures” with Palestinian Authority