Wall Street Journal on April 14, 2015, published an article on the new debate on Who Lost Asia? Excerpts below:
After Mao Zedong’s 1949 civil-war victory over the U.S.-backed Nationalists, a bitter debate engulfed America: Who lost China?
…a debate is now brewing in Washington over what some perceive to be another massive foreign-policy blunder—the project to help build up the economy of post-Mao China and integrate it into the U.S.-led international order.
A growing array of U.S. policy analysts now believe that a policy of “constructive engagement” intended to produce a friendly, democratic China has instead bred a strategic competitor, one that’s now challenging American supremacy in the Western Pacific and may one day aspire to global domination.
And the new debate has become: Who lost Asia?
In his just-published book “The Hundred-Year Marathon: China’s Secret Strategy to Replace America as the Global Superpower,” former Pentagon official Michael Pillsbury points a finger at a number of actors who he says have contributed to this mistake—starting with himself. “For decades, I played a sometimes prominent role in urging administrations of both parties to provide China with technological and military assistance,” he writes.
As for the World Bank, Mr. Pillsbury contends, it offered Beijing the economic blueprints on how to catch up with America after a secret meeting with Deng Xiaoping in 1983. The U.S. government handed over unspecified “sensitive information” and “expert advice,” he writes.
All along, according to Mr. Pillsbury, Beijing had a hidden plan for a Chinese-led world order. The U.S. strategy was, he concludes, “the most systematic, significant and dangerous failure in American history.”
A report last month by the Council on Foreign Relations, a high-powered U.S. foreign policy think tank, mirrors the theme. U.S. support for China’s entry into the global trading system, it says, has spurred China’s growth and “accelerated its rise as a geopolitical rival.”
The report’s authors, Robert D. Blackwill and Ashley J. Tellis, say that by deepening economic ties with the U.S. and other countries Beijing hopes to gently bend them to its will. If they don’t play along, China can always use force once it’s strong enough.
Comment: There is no doubt that the West providing China with technological and military assistance has been a great mistake. It has been based on the faulty leftist conception that once prosperity is growing in a communist dictatorship that regime will slowly become democratic. This in turn has been caused by the incorrect belief in the West that creating a global political and economic system fosters peace on a global scale. Instead the West now has to deal with an aggressive Russia and a growing China threat in the Asia Pacific.
China is no strategic partner of the United States. It is a geopolitical rival. The leftist agenda of providing Russia with support for joining the global economic system has left Europe in grave danger. It has provided Putin with an opportunity to attempt to recreate the Soviet Union. A possible future pact between China and Russia is a grave threat to the West, where decline has become a choice.
During the past eight years Obama has committed the United States to decline. If Hillary Clinton is victorious in the 2016 US election there could be a third term of Obama policy that further endangers the West. Mr. Pillsbury and the CFR have discovered the failure of US policy in aiding China. It has in risen to become