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Hu Talks of a “Peaceful Rise”—China Prepares for War without Limits
By Bin Wang
Chinese President Hu Jintao’s address to the United Nations on September 14 provides an important occasion to take a look at China’s role in the world.
Hu Jintao himself often speaks of China’s “peaceful rise.” According to Hu, China is destined to grow into a regional power, but that growth will not be at the expense of any of its neighbors. It will play a positive and responsible role in the region and the world, increasing stability and the chances for peace.
Recent comments and publications by top Chinese military officials place Hu’s comments in a very different light. Far from preparing to promote peace in the world, China appears to be heading rapidly towards war, and the beguiling talk of a “peaceful rise” is in fact part of the long range strategy preparing for this war.
Plans for Nuclear War
On July 14th, 2005, by arrangement of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, General Zhu Chenghu, dean of the Institute of National Security Studies of the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) National Defense University, met with Western media. He shocked the reporters present by saying, “In the event that China launches an attack against Taiwan and the United States offers aid to Taiwan, then the people of China are prepared to accept the total annihilation of Chinese cities east of Xi’an in exchange for one to two hundred, or perhaps even more, cities in the western United States.” General Zhu explained this threat of nuclear war by saying that “China does not have the ability to win a traditional war against the U.S.”
Shortly after that, on July 17th, the Chinese Communist Party published on websites outside mainland China a speech given by General Zhu on July 6 to a privately held university conference. In the speech General Zhu explained that nuclear weapons were a means of solving China’s population problem, and expressed the intention of using them to attack every civilized nation in the world except for Africa. The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) has aggressively organized a series of propaganda activities around General Zhu’s speech.
“War Beyond Limits”
According to recent reports by the U.S. Department of Defense, China’s military expenditures are enormous, ranked third in the world. Among the weapons China has acquired is the world’s most powerful long distance guided missile.
In February 1999, the CCP PLA Literary and Arts publishing House published a book entitled “War Beyond Limits.” The book describes a new strategy against the U.S and other Western countries. “China will utilize the weaknesses of the Western nations, such as their fear of the loss of lives and their attachment to peace, while employing every means of war beyond conventions, in order to achieve victory.”
The writer of this book believes that Iraq and Yugoslavia lost their wars merely because they conformed to the normal conventions of war. In 1999, the Unique and Good Book Club ranked “War Beyond Limits” third on its list of Ten Great Books of 1999. After the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks on the United States, Chinese leaders hid their delight behind a mask of sympathy. In private, the then paramount leader Jiang Zemin is said to have watched over and over again with great delight the film of the planes crashing into the twin towers. People across China celebrated. Prisoners and criminals were treated to a special celebration. Many people exclaimed that the 9/11 attack was indeed “War Beyond Limits.”
Hiding “our hatred”
As early as 1957, Mao Zedong, the leader of the CCP, spoke at a conference in Moscow marking the 40th anniversary of the October Revolution and declared, “When fighting a nuclear war, the death of several hundred millions of people should not be something to fear since it can turn the entire world socialist.”
Since its establishment, the CCP has always been preparing for war. The CCP cadres believe that a war against the Western democratic countries is inevitable. In preparations for this war, the CCP wears a smile visible to the international community, while strengthening its army and producing enough nuclear weapons to “demolish” the U.S and other Western countries. Mi Zhenyu, the former Vice-President of the People’s Liberation Army’s Academy of Military Science, once said, “We must hide our hatred for a long time...We must hide our capacity and await the opportune time.” The successor to Mao as the head of the CCP, Deng Xiaoping, emphasized to the military the word “endurance.”
The leaders of the CCP feel that the opportune time is approaching. In the latest edition of China’s Military Digest Newspaper Weekly, China warns the U.S. that should U.S. forces interfere with China’s integration of Taiwan, it will face heavy casualties from the “five deadly attacks.” (according to Chinese military doctrine: 1) U.S. global security will be challenged by Chinese alliances with Iran, North Korea, and other countries; 2) U.S. supply lines in east Asia will be cut, U.S. forces will be tied down; if Japan supports the U.S., Japan will become a battleground; 3) U.S investments in China will be completely lost; 4) China will deploy some of the most advanced weapons in the world, so that the U.S. will not be assured of winning; 5) China will launch nuclear attacks on the U.S. itself, causing huge casualties.)
Tang Chunfeng, the former economic and commercial consul of the Chinese Embassy in Japan, has recently indicated in Hong Kong that a military conflict might erupt between China and Japan this year. The recent statement made by former CCP Secretary of Defense General Chi Haotian, who believes that “modernization under the saber is China’s only choice,” has become a hot topic on the Internet. He believes that China can only attain peace with the destruction of Japan and the crippling of the U.S. He has also proposed the use of biological weapons to “clean” the U.S in order to gain “the space to survive.”
The CCP’s Turn to Fascism
The last twenty years in China have seen an ugly new development. CCP propaganda has prepared the population of China for war, and in particular for “War Beyond Limits.” In a 2004 survey conducted by the largest Chinese internet company, Sina, 82.6% of people answered affirmatively to the question “If you are a soldier and you were permitted by your superiors to open fire on women, children, and prisoners of war, would you?” The respondents to this survey were mainly well educated young people.
The CCP has prepared the people for war in order to shift their attention away from the many crises that CCP rule has brought to China. This is part of a self-conscious attempt by the CCP leadership to save the Communist Party by transforming itself into a fascist party. The CCP has sought to inculcate into the people of China extreme nationalism, resentment over China’s treatment by other nations, the need for China to conquer other countries in order to gain “living space,” the racial superiority of the Chinese people, and the historical destiny of the Chinese people to rule the world.
When Hu Jintao speaks to the U.N., he may speak to the world about a “peaceful rise.” Inside China, the message delivered by the CCP will be very different. The West needs to understand clearly the fascist politics that lie behind the Chinese turn towards war. But that will be the subject of another article.
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