No American wants war – with China or any country. But strength deters war, as weakness invites it. Shrinking from an obligation to prepare, anticipate, and proportionally respond is reckless. Four facts suggest Biden’s national security team is off the mark.
First, Biden’s proposed military budget is anemic. Democrat rumblings in Congress suggest they want cuts to Biden’s flat number. Leadership is about “peace through strength,” Reagan’s credo. It works. To cut defense when threats loom is wrongheaded. Preparation assures survival and deters war through readiness. America’s enemies know what Democrats propose. See, e.g., Congressional Democrats urge Biden to cut defense spending.
Second, America’s adversaries cooperate, and Biden’s team misses the impact. America’s adversaries cooperate against us, even as they spar with each other. As China ramps up military spending, coordinating with Iran and Russia, they push the US and Russia to cut intermediate-range ballistic missiles, see, e.g., China Urges U.S. and Russian Nuclear Cuts and Progress in Iran Talks. Meantime, they “prioritize” deployment of the same missiles. See, e.g., How Are China’s Land-based Conventional Missile Forces Evolving? Ominously, China is building 100 new missile silos. Biden is silent.
Similarly, China and Russia take turns hacking, stealing, cyber- ransacking Western computer systems (public and private), testing defenses, strengthening their own. Likewise, China is working on missile defense while trying to induce the West to stop deployments. See, e.g., China Flight-Tests Missile Interceptors; Pentagon pushes for Pacific missile defence site to counter China’s threat to the US; MANAGING THE SINO-AMERICAN DISPUTE OVER MISSILE DEFENSE.
The world’s chess pieces are never stationary; no game won with a brilliant opening, fewer by a bad opening. More to the point where they stand relative to each other affects us. Not to grasp the combination aligning against US interests is not to understand that – for many – their enemy’s enemy is their friend. Put differently; coordinated Lilliputians can immobilize a giant.
Third, China’s military and ideological blades are sharpening. If our military is superior, China aims to overtake us. Their intent is clear, dominance. The longer we wait to disabuse China of this notion, the more eager they get.
China originated COVID-19 through “gain of function” research at Wuhan, almost certainly. That research was two-edged, useful as defense and possible bioweapon. Whatever their intent, they hid the origins and now cover up the coverup. Biden’s team should hit back, but nothing.
China’s annual “two sessions” summit this year was blunt, declaring Communism ascendant, the West in retreat. China resolves to push their advantage, including economic gains from the pandemic’s “chaos.” See, e.g., At annual political meetings, China lays out its plan to surpass the U.S.; Key Takeaways From China’s Annual ‘Two Sessions’ Meeting.
Last week, China’s 100th anniversary of Communism pushed a similar narrative. President Xi elevated Communism and threw down, declaring China “will never allow any foreign force to bully, oppress, or subjugate us,” and “anyone who would attempt to do so will find themselves on a collision course with a great wall of steel forged by over 1.4 billion Chinese people.” See, China’s Communist Party Vows To Rule For Another 100 Years On Its Anniversary.
None of this sounds like collegiality, respect, or world peace – just the reverse, ambitious, unapologetic advancement of Communism, ideological warfare, saber-rattling. In the spirit of Reagan’s response to Soviet ambitions, where is Biden’s tough pushback, defense of freedom?
“Celebrating Communism” is a glass raised to unspeakable horrors, tantamount to feting Stalin’s pogroms, mass starvation, proliferation of gulags, and Soviet ideology.
China’s oppression of basic rights is only grand in the way a hurricane’s destruction is, on a grand scale, of heartache.
“What?” you say.
Yes, that is history. Mao Zedong, on whom President Xi models himself, killed up to 80 million Chinese by “starvation, persecution, prison labor, and mass executions.” See, e.g., Mao Zedong. In 2016, the Washington Post – now suffering activist amnesia – noted “both Hitler and Stalin were outdone by Mao Zedong” as “his Great Leap Forward policy led to the deaths of up to 45 million…” See, e.g., Remembering the biggest mass murder in the history of the world. This is Xi’s big hero.
While toasting Communism, millions of Chinese citizens remain captive in labor and reeducation camps, involuntarily sterilized, hundreds of millions are denied rights in our Bill of Rights. Western media – many young, naïve, uneducated in history, never having set foot in a Communist country, lap up China’s fake data, declaring poverty gone, where two dollars is rich.
These young “journalists” do not grasp life in a place with a one-child policy for decades, where pregnant women were dragged off the street to abortions, where speaking out got you killed, no appeals. How can we honestly accept this kind of behavior – as worthy of praise? Yet Biden is silent, elites and media enamored of Mao’s oh-so-savvy successor. See, e.g., Media critics erupt as outlets continue to gush over Chinese Communist Party anniversary: ‘PARTY TIME’; CNN roasted for glowing coverage of Chinese Communist Party’s anniversary: ‘This is Xi-N-N’;
Elon Musk Swoons Over China on Communist Party’s 100th Anniversary: ‘Truly Amazing’;
Finally, watch Russia. They are pushing the envelope with cyberattacks, likely complicit in cyber-assaults on critical infrastructure, oil, food, other sectors. Biden’s team plays coy, no coordinated response, suggesting impotence. Russia will continue until pushback. Whether Russia’s aim is to harass, probe weakness, or distract from other actions, response is needed.
Bottom line: No American wants war – with China or any country. But strength deters war, as weakness invites it. Forgetting that lesson will be costly. The time to remember is now.