The National Interest just published an essay by Pakistani Sen. Mushahid Hussain urging U.S. policymakers to accommodate China’s achievement of Indo-Pacific hegemony. The senator, who studied at Georgetown’s School of Foreign Service and chairs the Pakistani Senate’s Defence Committee, doesn’t put it that bluntly in his essay, but that would be the consequence if the United States followed his advice.
Sen. Hussain blames the United States for starting a “new Cold War” with China. U.S. policymakers, he writes, “created” the false idea that China is “the enemy,” and “couch[ed] the confrontation in ideological terms, democracy versus autocracy,” in order to “sell” countermeasures to the American public. “[A]nti-communism,” Hussain contends, “still sells.” He describes the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) as having “formal Marxist trappings,” but claims that it “exudes the vibrancy and creativity of a thriving Asian free-market economy pushing globalization.”
American policymakers, Hussain continues, “demoniz[e]” the CCP, just as they did after World War II when the U.S. rebuffed overtures by Mao Zedong and Ho Chi Minh, who he labels “Asian freedom fighters.” Mao, Ho, and Zhou Enlai, Hussain assures us, admired Franklin Roosevelt and Thomas Jefferson, yet U.S. policymakers called them “enemies,” too.
Chinese President Xi Jinping’s policies, Hussain writes, stem not from ideology but from “two historical traumas”: the “Century of Humiliation” when China was under foreign domination and the unraveling of the Soviet Union. Xi is doing nothing more, Hussain writes, than protecting China’s core interests, which include “Taiwan, Tibet, Xinjiang, Hong Kong, and the South China Sea.” Above all, Hussain explains, Xi wants to protect the primacy of the CCP which is “pivotal to the country’s unity, stability, and prosperity.”
Sen. Hussain criticizes America’s “military-driven, security-centric approach” to China. China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), he explains, “has won hearts and minds” by building a “huge global infrastructure of trade, investment, and regional connectivity driven by the economy, energy, ports, pipelines, roads, and railways, roping in willing partners, ranging from the Solomon Islands to Saudi Arabia, Panama to Pakistan, Israel to Indonesia” while the United States forms security alliances that seek to maintain the Indian and Pacific Oceans as “American lakes.” (READ MORE from Francis P. Sempa: Secretary of State Blinken ‘Blinks’ in Our Eyeball-to-Eyeball China Challenge)
Hussain criticizes Presidents Obama, Trump, and Biden for pushing China closer to Russia. China was once America’s ally in the original Cold War against the Soviet Union, and it could once again be America’s partner if only U.S. policymakers would abandon their emerging policy of containment. “[O]n balance,” he writes, “there is greater convergence of Chinese and U.S. interests on key global issues, than divergence.”
That a Pakistani politician supports the CCP in its efforts to extend its political reach and control throughout the Indo-Pacific region should surprise no one. The surprise here is that Hussain’s pro-CCP propaganda essay appears in the National Interest instead of the Global Times (China’s English-language mouthpiece). Anyone who calls Mao and Ho “Asian freedom fighters” should not be taken seriously, let alone given a featured place on the website of a respected American foreign-policy magazine. And anyone who urges the United States to willingly surrender its global leadership to the CCP — the most murderous regime in human history — is promoting what Winston Churchill called a “new Dark Age.”
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