China and Obama

China’s strident tone raises concerns among Western governments, analysts

China’s indignant reaction to the announcement of U.S. plans to sell weapons to Taiwan appears to be in keeping with a new triumphalist attitude from Beijing that is worrying governments and analysts across the globe.

From the Copenhagen climate change conference to Internet freedom to China’s border with India, China observers have noticed a tough tone emanating from its government, its representatives and influential analysts from its state-funded think tanks.

Calling in U.S. Ambassador Jon Huntsman on Saturday, Chinese Vice Foreign Minister He Yafei said the United States would be responsible for “serious repercussions” if it did not reverse the decision to sell Taiwan $6.4 billion worth of helicopters, Patriot Advanced Capability-3 missiles, minesweepers and communications gear. The reaction came even though China has known for months about the planned deal, U.S. officials said.

“There has been a change in China’s attitude,” said Kenneth G. Lieberthal, a former senior National Security Council official who is currently at the Brookings Institution. “The Chinese find with startling speed that people have come to view them as a major global player. And that has fed a sense of confidence.”

Maybe so, but having a putz in the White House as Commander in Chief doesn’t help things:

And about the emerging hegemon that is mounting attacks against us each and every hour of each and every day? There was not one word on the most extensive and continuous attempt to intrude into our computers, disrupt electronic infrastructure and steal technology and information. The president had exactly two things to say about China: “There’s no reason Europe or China should have the fastest trains or the new factories that manufacture clean energy products,” followed by “Meanwhile, China is not waiting to revamp its economy.”

Actually the Chinese are not reforming, restructuring or revamping their economy, though the U.S. should make better trains. Nonetheless we needed to hear more about the country that is supposed to replace the U.S. as the global superpower in 10 years’ time, the nation his administration says is essential to the solution of every major global problem.

Maybe he thought we would not notice or would not care that he neglected China in the State of the Union. But Obama’s failure to address the challenges posed by that nation and by others sends a chilling message to America’s allies and friends. While the global community faces daunting tasks, Obama devoted almost all of his address to swaying a domestic audience and to scoring points against Republicans.

This is only the beginning, folks.

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6 Responses to “China and Obama”

  1. Pat Patterson Says:

    But as long as the 7th Fleet patrols the Straits of Formosa as it has for over 50 years and the 3rd can reinforce in a matter of days then it is still simply talk. But the Chinese, even if confident, also figure that they can bluster and demand for a possible advatage from Pres Obama. Based on a bluff.

  2. O Bloody Hell Says:

    > “There has been a change in China’s attitude,”

    Yeah, here, let me translate from the Chinese sub-text:

    “Hey, this Obama schmuck is a f***in’ pansy, not like that hard-ass Bush guy. Let’s see if we can push the dumb SOB around…”

  3. O Bloody Hell Says:

    And in case it wasn’t obvious, my bet is that the answer will be:

    “Yes We Can”.

  4. 11B40 Says:

    Greetings:

    Paraphrasing “Dire Straits”, “Money for Commies and tricks for free.

    Who could have thought that economically empowering a bunch of Commies would lead to a whole new set of problems on top of those lovely Maoist problems we had so grown to love.

    Not me. You?

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  6. O Bloody Hell Says:

    > Who could have thought that economically empowering a bunch of Commies would lead to a whole new set of problems on top of those lovely Maoist problems we had so grown to love.

    Actually, this is the better of the alternatives.

    Think about it — China’s “One Child” policy has made an unbalanced, male-dominated population.

    Historically, such populations always go jingoistic, as the males seek to gain the attention of the short supply of females, with the secondary benefit that the excess males who fail tend to be removed from the gene pool.

    By increasing their economic status, China now has a non-militaristic arena in which males can compete for the attention of women. Further, with some semblance of economic prosperity, there is actually reduction in militarism, since any wealth that creates arms necessarily does not go to create future economic goods that people will have grown to expect as a right.

    I believe the chief concern here is “have they gotten used to it sufficiently before the sh** heads towards the fan” that they won’t be redirected?

    If you have read Isaac Asimov’s Foundation series, esp. the eponymous first book, the last short story The Merchant Princes somewhat ties to this “anti-war” technique.

    Yes, I’m sure there will be argument that “they’re dictators, they don’t need the will of the people”. Wrong. ANY leader needs the will of the people. There’s just too many of them, esp. in a place like China. Even Saddam had to have a good chunk of the will of the people on his side, or he would have been tossed out completely. Kim Jong Il needs the support of China AND a powerful military to retain power against the will of his people, and that doesn’t give him much opportunity for more than making noise. It’s not like he could really go to war and sustain it.

    No, this saber rattling comes not from China’s economic might, but from Obama’s very obvious lack any semblance of a spine, as I suggest above.

    For a Democrat, that’s far, far less of a surprise than China’s behavior.

    “A Dem with a spine” is close to unknown — only Joe Lieberman and Zell Miller come to mind, and both of them are old enough to be outside the current generational crop entirely.