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Vladimir Putin is someone easy to dislike. Despite the considerable socioeconomic successes of his authoritarian stewardship of Russia and the popularity he enjoys at home and in some other places, Putin is a cruel despot. The world hegemonic appetite he has exhibited since reaching power in 2000 is well known. All this truth does not eclipse, however, the hard fact that Russia is not the world’s biggest menace. This is not even close. It is not even a distant second. China is the biggest threat.
Whether Russia invades Ukraine, the Putin regime has already demonstrated an imperialistic nature. Georgia was invaded in 2008, and Crimea was annexed in 2014. The Hitlerian argument of ethnic protection and Lebensraum (“living space”) has been incorporated into the praxis of Russian foreign policy under the leadership of the former KGB lieutenant colonel (Putin). Undoubtedly, this pattern of behavior is disturbing, challenges world stability, and warrants a return of military and economic commitments by the Free World.
Measured in absolute Gross Domestic Product (GDP) figures, Russia’s economy is about the size of Italy’s. When considered on a per capita basis, Italy is far more potent. Although Moscow’s nuclear arsenal is not something one should minimize, China, Pakistan, Israel, India, France, the United Kingdom, and the United States also have them. A reflection on empirical evidence will guide our attention to the Chinese communist regime as having made far greater inwards towards the destabilization and subversion of the West.
When Mao Tse-tung brought Chinese communism to power in 1949, he announced the beginning of a 100-year marathon. That feat established by the world’s most notorious mass murderer was nothing short of hegemonic domination. This policy has been continued by all his successors. Through asymmetric warfare facilitated by economic maneuvering granted to the communist dictatorship by the West, China has gained an awesome presence inside the corridors of power of every democracy on the planet. Not even the Soviets accomplished this.
Without the use of troops or tanks, China has invaded and occupied strategic realms inside the U.S. and Europe, the arsenals of the world’s democratic order. This “occupation” is exercised through extreme influence and policy charting schemes that are geared to advance the overarching purpose of making Chinese communism the dominant global power. Examples abound.
The great bulk of Silicon Valley is in the pocket of the Marxist-Leninist-Maoist regime. Google and Microsoft, for example, are heavily entangled with partnerships, not just with Chinese Communist Party (CCP) operatives, but with CCP members who are part of the People’s Liberation Army (PLA). Peter Schweizer in a new book, Red-Handed: How American Elites Get Rich Helping China Win, offers abundant evidence of the detrimental relationship between America’s most wealthy and well-connected and Chinese communism.
It is not just Big Tech’s oligarchy that is intrinsically meshed with Beijing’s socialist mercantilist machine. Wall Street fares no better. Bridgewater Associates, one of the most important asset management firms in the United States, is deeply intertwined with the CCP. Its founder, Ray Dalio, has become an apologist for communist China. Praising the Chinese regime for its “redistributive” capacity and model, Dalio hopes America adapts an American version of the China model. “The U.S., through its own system,” he says, “needs more common prosperity, and a lot of other countries do.” The Blackstone Group, a major player in the hedge fund market, is also a powerful entity that controls billions of investment dollars and is extremely pro-CCP.
Hollywood, professional sports, and Washington politicians defend Chinese communists’ interests because the CCP and irresponsible domestic economic policies have made many of them millionaires (some billionaires). The Soviet Union, despite the elaborate network of its intelligence capabilities, of which Putin was a part, never acquired so much influence over America. Its success was peripheral when compared to China’s.
Rare earth minerals and metals that are vitally needed for high-tech production and maintenance are 85% controlled by the Marxist dictatorship, according to Centre for Strategic and International Studies. This is most dangerous. The world’s dependence on Chinese manufacturing goods for domestic supplies has fostered, in addition to an unhealthy dependency on Chinese tyranny, but also given life to an industrious lobbying army which is at work in the capitals of the planet’s democracies daily, doing the bidding for the CCP.
If we enter into the equation, the neocolonialist role that China has acquired by way of its Belt and Road Initiative, a license to steal and occupy countries, the notion of what an “invasion” signifies takes on new meaning. Putin is a thug, and his regime is autocratic. But, make no mistake about it, communist China launched an invasion to crush the West in the 1970s (at the West’s invitation). It is this offensive that must receive the West’s priority
Julio M Shiling, political scientist, writer, director of Patria de Martí and The Cuban American Voice, lecturer and media commentator. A native of Cuba, he currently lives in the United States. Twitter: @JulioMShiling // Julio es politólogo, escritor, director de Patria de Martí y The Cuban American Voice. Conferenciante y comentarista en los medios. Natural de Cuba, vive actualmente en EE UU.