Messy world needs China’s stability
Various conflicts between countries, which seem freakish from a traditional perspective, constantly take place. After reports revealed that the British Ambassador to the US privately dissed US President Donald Trump in leaked cables back to the British foreign ministry, Trump called him “a very stupid guy” and took the chance to lash out at Prime Minister Theresa May. UK Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt said Trump’s behavior was “disrespectful.”
Japan has imposed restrictions on the export of semiconductor materials to South Korea, generating enormous difficulties to the production of electronic products in South Korea. Japan’s move came as retaliatory measures over the forced labor compensation case with its neighbor.
World order is dysfunctional in some key aspects. A sense of insecurity
is spreading. After the US made a few moves out of traditional rules, it has become even more wild-minded, while the negative effects are brewing. Obviously, Japan is following the US footprint to cut supplies to South Korea.
The latest feud between the US and the UK shows the rusty relations between Washington and its allies. The fierce criticism from Trump against the trade policies of India and Vietnam sends a signal that the Us-launched trade offensive is just the beginning, which is bound to be followed by endless clashes.
The Korean Peninsula nuclear crisis hasn’t been resolved, and the Iran nuclear problem has reemerged. The US has primarily contributed to its escalation. Peace and stability used to be regarded as the common interests of all parties concerned. But the Iran nuclear problem offers another perspective: Turmoil sometimes serves the interest of certain forces.
The world will continue to surprise us. Globalization may be intentionally broken with the supply chain being disrupted. Uncertainties will challenge more countries. The slowing global economy is the fundamental reason. Developed countries are at a loss in the face of the future, particularly the US which spreads anxiety worldwide.
The West’s old political and economic tools can no longer solve current problems. There are disagreements on security risks and national interests. The Cold War mentality remains, but globalization demands different considerations. The line between an enemy and friend is becoming vague.
We are at a time of great changes without a clear sense of where international relations are heading. But a certain law probably won’t change: The country with greater national strength and scale is more capable of withstanding the risks at the time of turbulence.
Steadiness should be the key word for China’s current strategy. What is happening between China and the US is the largest trade war. Washington has identified Beijing as a strategic competitor, but it doesn’t mean that China-us conflicts are bound to be the biggest focus of international frictions in the long run. It will certainly make a difference to Beijing whether Washington will manage to develop its “united front” to confront China or will maintain a stalemate with China and stir things up in other fields.
For China, the key is to develop, fully open up and make friends worldwide. When globalization is eroded, we should remedy it. As the world falls into disorder, all countries, including the US, will need China.