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The Battle at Zhongnanhai

(Revised)

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Since early 2012, when then Chongqing police Chief Wang Lijun, attempted to defect to the U.S., an intense political drama has been on display in China. This drama, titled “The Battle at Zhongnanhai,” has included multiple episodes, including the downfall of Bo Xilai, the smashing of “flies,” and the “tiger hunt” of Zhou Yongkang and Xu Caihou. Many people are expecting the next episode to be the capture of the “spider” (Jiang Zemin). [1]

Don’t underestimate the drama. It is a battle between China’s current top leader Xi Jinping and a former top leader, Jiang Zemin, with the full support of Jiang’s faction. Also, it breaks the Chinese Communist Party’s (CCP’s) long tradition of confining their operations and in-fighting to a closed circle. It is the first time that the CCP has openly displayed its internal struggle on the world stage and it even uses the world stage to conduct its campaign.

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The Chinese Communist Regime’s Strategies to Overpower the U.S.

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The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) ghost is still behind every building block of Chinese society, while China’s economy has expanded to a scale comparable to that of the U.S. People who live in a society that doesn’t require having to face the CCP in their daily lives tend to underestimate the Party’s impact.

Although the U.S. government and the American people have never been China’s enemy, due to their conflicting ideologies, U.S. democracy and its values have presented the biggest threat to the CCP’s continued existence. This has been particularly true since the CCP attempted economic openness at the international level, while still trying to keep its political system unchanged. How the communist regime views and treats U.S.-China relations has therefore become quite complex.

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A Clash of Values, Part V

The U.S.-Sino Relationship

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Differences Between the Governing Principles of the United States and the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) 

Previously, this series focused on the differences between the United States and China as to their foundations and theoretical underpinnings. While America’s Founding Principles grew out of a revolutionary war fought for freedom and the rights of the governed, the Communist Party fought a revolutionary war to establish its authoritarian rule. While the U.S. based its legitimacy on the consent of the governed, Mao Zedong proclaimed in Chapter Five of The Little Red Book, “Every Communist must grasp the truth: Political power grows out of the barrel of a gun.” While the U.S. adopted a Constitution designed to limit governmental power and guarantee specific individual rights, the Communist Party designed the Chinese government to assure its supremacy over China and ensure that it was firmly ensconced in power.”

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A Clash of Values, Part IV

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Propaganda vs. Reality

In Part II of this series, we discussed the CCP’s quest for control, “How could it maintain strict control if anything other than the Party – human rights, the right to vote, universal values, a sense of morality, the rule of law, China’s Constitution, or even God – took precedence over the Party’s dictates?”

Over the years, the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) has used propaganda to create a fiction to present to its own people and to the rest of the world that the Party is Great, Glorious, and Correct and that the China Model will displace Western universal values, while “China will fundamentally be established as the legitimate world leader.”  This CCP viewpoint faces a serious problem. Just as the CCP distorts reality to support its own self-interest, man likewise values truth, seeks truth, and has the capacity to recognize what is not true. In Part IV, we will explore the CCP’s quest to control perception and the dichotomy between the CCP’s view of reality and the Western view.

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A Clash of Values, Part III

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Part II of the series discussed how the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) obtained its power through the barrel of a gun. The Party claimed that it represented “the people” and thus had full legitimacy to use all means possible, including dictatorship and terrorist killings, to achieve this goal. To maintain its control, justify its legitimacy, and deflect attention from people’s desire for reform, the Party shifted their focus to economic growth. Though many problems surfaced under what has come to be known as the “China model,” such as a high concentration of wealth in the hands of a few, endemic corruption, environmental problems bordering on disaster, unfairness toward foreign companies, and violent mistreatment of dissidents and minority groups, the Party has never stopped proclaiming that it is “Great, Glorious, and Correct,” and blaming others for China’s problems.

The entire Communist system was, during the formative stages of CCP governance, based on Karl Marx’s Communist theory, the bible for the Communist Parties. The CCP later expanded the base to include Marxism-Leninism-Mao Zedong Thought. The CCP’s Communist ideology spread throughout China from the 1950s to the 1970s. By the end of the Cultural Revolution (1966 – 1976), however, the Communist bubble had burst. Having seen so much violence, the Chinese people no longer believed in a Communist Utopia.

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A Clash of Values, Part II

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Developing the People’s Republic of China through the Barrel of a Gun

In contrast to an America that valued freedom, human rights, and universal values, and in which the only foundation on which legitimate authority could be based was Agreement, the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) followed another course in founding the People’s Republic of China. Chairman Mao stated in Chapter Five of The Little Red Book, “Every Communist must grasp the truth: Political power grows out of the barrel of a gun.” Having attained power through the barrel of a gun, it continued to use that gun in order to ensure its power in perpetuity.

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