IS CHINA OUR FRIEND OR FOE?
1 VOTERS OPINION on AUSTRALIAN POLITICS
The Chinese Invasion By Stealth
CHINA - Friend or Foe? pg 1 of 3
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IS CHINA A THREAT TO AUSTRALIA?
A.S.I.O. seems to think so, as does this writer!
THERE IS NONE SO BLIND AS THOSE THAT REFUSE TO SEE
Quote “It is 40 years since China began the process it refers to as "reform and opening up", which saw the People's Republic set aside its ideological objections to capitalism and enter the markets of the world. That historic step raised a reciprocal question for the democracies of the West: in pursuit of business with China, how much were they prepared to set aside their ideological objections to a party-state ruled by communists? “End Quote
1 VOTER- COMMENT2- So far Australia has turned a blind eye to the Tiananmen square massacre and Chinas’ racial cleansing practices and human rights offences.
AUSTRALIA IS TOLERATING THIS:
TIANANMEN SQUARE MASSACRE
Quote “In 1989, after several weeks of demonstrations, Chinese troops entered Tiananmen Square on June 4 and fired on civilians. Estimates of the death toll range from several hundred to thousands. It has been estimated that as many as 10,000 people were arrested during and after the protests. Several dozen people have been executed for their parts in the demonstrations.” End quote
CHINA IS COMMITTING ETHNIC CLEANSING IN XINJIANG – IT'S TIME FOR THE WORLD TO STAND UP
Quote “Now is the time to act on China’s human rights abuses in Xinjiang. China’s efforts to destroy the ethnic Uighur identity through mass internment camps and militarised surveillance must be raised loudly and clearly condemned during a UN human rights review of China on Tuesday in Geneva.
An estimated one million Uighurs and other Muslims minorities are believed to be held in extra-legal detention centres in Xinjiang because of their ethno-religious identity, with torture and ill-treatment rife in the camps
Step-by-step the Xi Jinping regime has crossed thresholds unthinkable years ago, with little repercussion. The government detained nearly every single human rights lawyer over a single weekend in July 2015, imprisoned China’s only Nobel peace prize laureate until he died in custody in July 2017, and earlier this year, abolished presidential terms limits, paving the way for Xi to become dictator for life.” End quote
Quote “Beijing has adopted an increasingly aggressive approach to dissent and its claims in the South China Sea, as well as endorsing Xi Jinping as president for life, the concern has grown that rather than seeing a capitalist "cat" supplant a communist one, we might be witnessing the birth of a horror hybrid - what political economist Nicholas Eberstadt recently called "market totalitarianism".
The question of how to engage Mr Xi's China has dogged successive Australian prime ministers, with Tony Abbott famously summarising the relationship as one of "fear and greed" and Malcolm Turnbull shoved into the diplomatic freezer after introducing foreign interference legislation.
So, it is hardly surprising that Scott Morrison and Bill Shorten have each sought to settle nerves over their approach to our largest foreign policy challenge. ”End quote
1 VOTER- COMMENT3- Scott Morrison and Bill Shorten have taken a softly, softly approach – keep your friends close and your enemies closer. Perhaps this is the safest option as militarily Australia would have no chance against Chinas’ might and we can’t rely on our allies, the U.S.A. helping us win any fracas. So, do we simply have to accede to China’s requirements because we view China’s attitude to us as ‘if you are not with us, then you are against us’? This hardly smacks of free will and the rights of Australia, it’s a fear reaction and not at all ‘friendly’. Not surprising given how the Chinese Government is prepared to treat their own people. Where’s the United Nations in this?
Don’t take my word for it, read what a highly knowledgeable consultant and journalist has to say:
AUGUST 2018 ESSAYS John Garnaut - John Garnaut is a consultant to Australian government and private clients. He was previously Fairfax’s China’s correspondent (2007–13) and Asia-Pacific Editor (2014–15), Senior Advisor to Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull (Nov 2015 – Sept 2016), and Principal Advisor (International) at the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet (Oct 2016 – Jun 2017)
AUSTRALIA’S CHINA RESET
THE REST OF THE WORLD IS WATCHING HOW WE COUNTER BEIJING’S CAMPAIGN OF INFLUENCE
Quote “ This is what Australia’s China reset is all about. It’s about sustaining the enormous benefits of engagement while managing the risks.
Australia’s China paradox
No country has benefited as clearly from its relationship with China as Australia. Our society has been enriched by waves of Chinese migrants and sojourners since the 1850s gold rush. Today our communities are energised and enhanced by 180,000 students, 1.2 million tourists annually and another 1.2 million residents with Chinese ancestry, who have mostly thrived and been welcomed in their new country.
Chinese tourists and students have offset the waning of China’s resource-intensive construction boom, which boosted Australia’s national income by 13 per cent and helped it sail through the global financial crisis. Last year, Australia posted a bilateral trade surplus of almost $50 billion.
Reports have shown that the Chinese Communist Party is systematically silencing critics in Australia and co-opting Chinese-language media here to present favourable views. They are channelling business and other professional opportunities to retired politicians and other influential Australians.
In December 2017, an unsourced report in The Australian said ASIO had identified candidates at state and local government elections whom it believed had close ties to Chinese intelligence services “in what security officials assess as a deliberate strategy by Beijing to wield influence through Australian politics”.
According to The Australian, China’s security chief, Meng Jianzhu, warned the Labor leadership about the electoral consequences of failing to endorse a bilateral extradition treaty: “Mr Meng said it would be a shame if Chinese government representatives had to tell the Chinese community in Australia that Labor did not support the relationship between Australia and China.”
All of this collided with an unexpected by-election in the North Sydney seat of Bennelong – the electorate that has the highest proportion of ethnic Chinese voters in the country – just as Malcolm Turnbull was introducing long-promised counter-interference legislation at the end of last year.
“Australia calls itself a civilized country, but its behaviour is confusing,” said an editorial in the Global Times, the notorious Chinese state-run tabloid. “While it is economically dependent on China, it shows little gratitude.”
How can Australia retain its character as an open, multicultural democracy while pushing back against a rising authoritarian superpower that is the source of so many of its migrants and one in every three of its export dollars?
The Chinese Communist Party international influence system is a complex, subtle and deeply institutionalised set of inducements and threats designed to shape the way outsiders talk, think and behave. The modus operandi is to offer privileged access, build personal rapport and reward those who deliver. It seeks common interests and cultivates relationships of dependency with chosen partners. The Party uses overt propaganda and diplomacy, quasi-covert fronts and proxies, and covert operations to frame debates, manage perceptions, and tilt the political and strategic landscape to its advantage.
Beijing’s ever-growing power is the drumbeat that accompanies China’s policies of territorial coercion across its southern and eastern seas. It is the subtext that persuades foreign governments to remain silent as Beijing abandons restraint in the restive borderlands of Tibet and Xinjiang.
Human rights advocates are also alarmed. “Beijing now deploys internationally tactics well honed at home: to quietly gut the human rights mechanisms of the UN, to impose restrictions on free speech in classrooms around the world, to undermine labour standards from Africa to Europe,” says Sophie Richardson, the China director for Human Rights Watch.” End quote
1 VOTER COMMENT 6- INTERESTING BUT NOT AN EXCUSE
CHINESE WORLDVIEWS AND CHINA’S FOREIGN POLICY
Quote “Four key narratives help explain the way that China acts in and interprets the world as it relates to foreign policy:, providing a more nuanced guide to China’s aims and ambitions and helping to shape more effective responses to China.
The century of humiliation;
The term is widely used among Chinese policymakers as shorthand to describe how China’s sense of its central role in world affairs was weakened by Western incursions that began with the Opium Wars in the 1840s. It has been particularly cultivated by the Party-state over the past 25 years. Since the patriotic education campaign of the early 1990s. The Party-state has emphasised a humiliation and victimisation narrative that lays the blame for China’s suffering firmly at the feet of the West.
Cultural characteristics as being inherent and unchanging;
the extent to which the Chinese see themselves as inherently peaceful, and how that self-perception shapes the way that China acts in the world.
History as destiny;
China was a powerful, respected, and peaceful global actor in the past, and this will once again be its natural and rightful role in the future. However, just as hostile international forces encircled China and pushed it from this position during the century of humiliation, these forces will continue trying to ‘keep China down’.
For over 2000 years, China presided over a network of trade and foreign relations in which neighbouring states as well as some much further away paid ‘tribute’ in exchange for economic and sometimes security benefits. The aim was to maintain a stable regional system in which member entities remained politically autonomous but recognised China culturally.
Returning China to a central role in world affairs is coupled with the view that the Chinese Communist Party is the only conceivable agent of the country’s international rejuvenation
Filial piety and familial obligation as they apply both inside China and to China’s neighbours.
Chinese foreign policy is the idea that the Chinese people and the state form a ‘family’. This is seen as being very different from the West, where the state and the people are perceived to exist as separate, sometimes adversarial entities, each keeping the other in check.
China (the country) and Party-state are blended and presented as a parental figure, and the familial obligation traditionally reserved for the family unit is also expected for the Party-state. One implication of this understanding of the Chinese state as a family is that criticism of China is perceived as a personal insult.
1 VOTER- COMMENT4- If Australia believes and understands the 4 points above, questions arising:
“Why do Chinese people wish to migrate here if not to excert their influence pro China?”
“Can Australia ever expect Chinese migrants and their future generations to identify as Australian, if their loyalties lie with China. Especially considering Australias current adherence to multiculturalism, an ethos that actively discourages Australian loyalty?”
“What means will China and Chinese nationals use to achieve their aims? ” (See Tienamin square)
Quote – Henry Kissinger, World Order, 2014
The American approach to policy is pragmatic; China’s is conceptual.
America has never had a powerful threatening neighbor; China has never been without a powerful adversary on its borders.
Americans hold that every problem has a solution; Chinese think that each solution is an admission ticket to a new set of problems.
Americans seek an outcome responding to immediate circumstances; Chinese concentrate on evolutionary change.
Americans outline an agenda of practical ‘deliverable’ items; Chinese set out general principles and analyze where they will lead.
Chinese thinking is shaped in part by Communism but embraces a traditionally Chinese way of thought to an increasing extent; neither is intuitively familiar to Americans. “End quote
SHORTEN AND WONG ON ASIA PACIFIC AND U.S. RELATIONS
Bill Shorten has signaled an incoming Labor government will not follow the lead of the United States by portraying China as a strategic threat.
The US relationship was a pillar of Australia’s foreign policy — anchored by the ANZUS treaty — and Australia’s interests were best served when the United States was engaged in the region.
Donald Trump’s America First stance made it clear the US was no longer prepared to prop up the global order
Australia’s interests would not always align with those of the United States
“Our national focus is different, our relationships with our close neighbours’ are different, our economies have different structures,”
As President Trump accuses China of predatory trading practices, stealing defense secrets and conducting foreign influence operations on US soil, Mr Shorten said Labor would continue to speak out in government when it disagreed with US policy.
Amid growing concerns over US isolationism, Mr Shorten declared a Labor government would-
deepen defence and economic ties with India
reinvigorate bilateral relationships with “old friends” such as Japan and South Korea.
revitalise the Australia-Indonesia relationship
improve relations with Papua New Guinea, examining ways to remove visa headaches for Papua New Guineans visiting Australia.
Additional support for the PNG, Fiji and Tongan defence forces would also be a priority under Labor, he said.
work more closely with multilateral institutions;
appoint a Global Human Rights Ambassador;
appoint Ambassador for Refugees.
Australia needs to increase the country’s influence in Asia by establishing four further diplomatic posts,
Australia’s diplomatic effort remains under-resourced particularly in Asia.
new post in Indonesia, given the growing importance of Australia’s relationship with Indonesia, will be a priority.”
Info-Pacific Strategy and Geo-economics team in DFAT Canberra is “a start” Australia needs new “geo-economic counsellors” in diplomatic posts
“Bangkok, Beijing, Hanoi, Jakarta, New Delhi, Tokyo and Washington will be important initial locations,”
Labor planned to provide an additional $4 million to expand the existing Australian Cultural Diplomacy Grants “This additional funding will focus on Australia’s cultural activities in Asia and the Pacific – helping to present to the region an accurate image of who we are.”
Quote” Ultimately, choices about how the United States and its allies respond to China need to be taken on a case-by-case basis. There are unlikely to be clear-cut or perfect responses. Each decision will come with risks of action and inaction, in both the short and the longer term. In some cases US and other Western policymakers may see no option but to take action that reinforces the more negative aspects of the Chinese narratives outlined above. In other cases, however, an understanding of these Chinese worldviews can help policymakers to avoid actions that are needlessly counter-productive. ........
Australia cannot defend itself against any big, militarily capable adversary, despite a $40 billion a year defence budget” End Quote
A RISING CHINA AND THE FUTURE OF THE “BLUE PACIFIC”
Quote” To be sure, we need not only think of these opportunities in relation to China specifically but also the broader range of opportunities emerging in the context of a rising China. China’s presence has meant that other actors, new and old, are resetting their priorities and stepping up engagement in the Pacific. “End quote
1 VOTER- COMMENT5- With consideration for the Chinese mindset, perhaps a more moderate and indirect response to what westerners perceive as aggression is the best way forward? However, understanding works both ways, will China make any effort to understand us or are we expected to bow to a greater power- or else?
Should we antagonize or placate as doing nothing doesn't appear to bean option anymore?
In the past Australia has been primarily militarily aligned with the U.S, England and N.Z. With the nature of war today, no one is a winner, certainly not the U.S. The last war the US won was WWII as that was the last declared war the US was in. All other actions, from Korea to Afghanistan were not declared wars. They were “Authorizations for the President to use military force. So, despite $40 billion a year spending on defense Australia can’t defend itself. We can’t rely on the U.S., even less so with Trump in the Whitehouse. This leaves us in a perilous position regarding China should Australia take the antagonistic path.
Should we change our alliances to Asia? Will a primarily (currently) European Nation be accepted by Asia as an allie? Do we want to take on the Chinese enemies as ours and adopt their mindset? Do we have an option?
I'm old enough to remember the sanctions against the 'Springbocks' and how the world viewed Idi Amin in Uganda. We railed against Pol Pot in Cambodia and what about sanctions against Iraq were a near-total financial and trade embargo imposed by the United Nations Security Council on Ba'athist Iraq. BUT we are OK with ignoring Chinese atrocities against their own people. We smile and take their money in the name of economics when we could take another direction. I also remember when Australia was fairly self-sufficient.
Should we compromise our values and morals and go with China or stand our ground? Is this even feasible given China's might?
China lies about Covid-19 and infects the world. Did this virus escape from their research facility? Why this research?
1 VOTER- COMMENT1 -
It’s a multi-faceted issue, should Australia put aside objections to the following issues and prioritise trade with China, as we have so far; or should we stand on our principals thus ignoring one of the largest nations and economies in the world and hobble Australia’s economic growth? If we don’t ‘co-operate ‘with China won’t another country pick up the slack to our economic detriment?
Why is it that the Asian nations feel entitled to sanction Australia if we speak up against one of their actions and yet feel free to slam Australia for the most insignificant squeak? Take for example Indonesia’s reaction to Australia’s possibility that we may move our embassy to Jerusalem, this delayed the signing of a major trade agreement with Indonesia. In 2019 Australia rejected the citizenship application of a prominent Chinese billionaire, Huang Xiangmo, and revoked his permanent residency over concerns about his ties to Beijing. The Liberals received a slap from Beijing accusing them of being ‘anti China’. What gives them the right to dictate to us?
Somehow, we have managed to completely ignore China’s stomping on their own citizens human rights! Has Australia lost its moral compass in the name of economic growth and placating a super-power that we are actively helping grow?
Is this a Chinese passive take-over of Australia? China is our major trading partner, as such are heavily reliant China. What happens if China pulls the plug? We are selling off farms and infrastructure to China at an astonishing rate and Chinese immigration is at an all-time high. What happens if China recalls loans on investments here or blocks trade routes (Band and Road) here and in the Pacific? Is China the benign benefactor or a sneaking dragon waiting to pounce?
Australia is increasingly making itself more vulnerable to China whilst being fully aware of the ‘Chinese mindset’ and their treatment of their own people.
Politicians have raised the issue of trade, investment and infrastructure development being used by countries such as China to further their strategic influence, ASIO has warned them.
So where do the Coalition and Labor sit on this issue?
Will Australia eventually become ‘Chinafied’ and under their control either overtly or by stealth?
Do Australians want this to happen and under our ‘Multicultural policy’, can we prevent this? Multiculturalism and those that cry 'racist' at any hint of choice in imigrant mix would deny the current Australian voting public the right to any oppinion or decision on the future 'racial mix' that will shape Australia.
China is the second-largest economy in the world, behind the United States and in front of Japan. Militarily, China’s strength ranks third, behind the United States and Russia. Do we have any options?