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Biding One's Time
The Two Faces of Xi Jinping

Even as China appears to be making concessions to the world order and shelving its revisionist ambitions—see Walter Russell Mead’s big essay on the subject today—Xi Jinping is still keeping the homegrown xenophobia and and nationalism warm and simmering. The New York Times had this story up yesterday:

In one widely circulated essay published by state news outlets titled “Nine Knockout Blows in America’s Cold War Against China,” the blogger, Zhou Xiaoping, argued that American culture was “eroding the moral foundation and self-confidence of the Chinese people.” He compared unfavorable American news coverage of China to Hitler’s treatment of the Jews. In another essay, he said the West had “slaughtered and robbed” China and other civilizations since the 17th century, and was now “brainwashing” it.

Mr. Xi, at a forum last month aimed at tightening political control of the arts, said the blogger exhibited “positive energy.”

The fact that Xi is stoking these sentiments rather than trying to subdue them suggest despite all the real diplomatic breakthroughs on display this week, China hasn’t in fact bought into the system like we would ultimately like it to. The breakthroughs represent Xi’s realization that China has little choice but to play ball for the time being. But this does not mean that Asia’s Game of Thrones is over—by a long shot.

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  • Pete

    Someone should tell Xi that he looks good in that tailored western suit he’s wearing.

  • Anthony

    “Xi Jingping is quite the dreamer. In addition to his famous ‘China Dream’ slogan, Xi called for the pursuit of the Asia-Pacific Dream during an address at this weekend’s the APEC CEO Summit. The Asia-Pacific dream is the latest iteration of China’s vision for a united Asian community with Beijing as its center – and with the United States noticeably absent.”

  • FriendlyGoat

    Well, it’s Black Friday season again. Our purchases and the Chinese people’s sales of goods are likely to keep Xi’s rhetoric on the back burner. But, propaganda such as the nine knockout blows is likely seen there as justification for ANY level of cyber war against the west.
    If we’re evil, then it’s okay to capture any data from us which is not nailed down.

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