The author, KISHORE MAHBUBANI, was born to two Hindu parents in Singapore. He has had two distinguished careers, thirty-three years in diplomacy and fifteen years in academia. He lived in New York for over ten years as Singapore’s ambassador to the UN.
My comments are in Bold. Mahbubani’s are copied verbatim from his book.
Mahbubani begins his book with several questions, such as:
“Is America making a fundamental error of perception when it views the CCP as a Chinese Communist Party? This would imply that the soul of the CCP is embedded in its communist roots. Yet, in the eyes of many objective Asian observers, the CCP actually functions as the “Chinese Civilization Party.” Its soul is not rooted in the foreign ideology of Marxism – Leninism but in the Chinese civilization.”
Is that a possibility worth considering?
On the subject of America’s attitude toward China he provides quotes such as:
“After speaking to several establishment figures with decades of combined experience on China , Greg Ip of the Wall Street Journal concluded : “ Yet if the pendulum swung too far toward accommodating China in the past , it may be rebounding too far toward confrontation now . ” Ip cites former treasury secretary Hank Paulson as saying: “We have a China attitude, not a China policy. … You have Homeland Security, the FBI, CIA, the Defense Department, treating China as the enemy and members of Congress competing to see who the most belligerent China hawk can be. No one is leaning against the wind, providing balance, asking what can we realistically do that has some chance of getting results that won’t be harmful to our economic and national – security interests in the long term?
“Bill Gates has decried the “paranoid” view fueling the current high – tech rivalry between the US and China . He said that trying to stop Beijing from developing innovative technologies is “beyond realistic.” Huawei, like all goods and services, should be subject to an objective test. The rule that everything that comes from China is bad … that is one crazy approach to trying to take advantage of innovation.”
Should that give us pause for thought?
Mahbubani ends his book with this conclusion:
If America and China were to focus on their core interests of improving the livelihood and well-being of their citizens, they would come to realize that there are no fundamental contradictions in their long-term national interests. The final question will therefore not be whether America or China has won. It will be whether humanity has.”
A sobering thought.
I hope you and your wife are doing exceptionally well. I like this very much, as the perception of any culture surely has two sides that we label as “good and “bad”. This binary viewpoint of any country and it’s people surely just pits us against them. How can you possibly move productively forward with anything or anyone that is just “bad”.
Thank you Jill. Precisely why I posted this.