The largest diplomatic network in the world belongs to CHINA
What does it look like, and how does it compare to the West’s coalition?
Yishai Gelb | 29.08.2022
The emerging CCC - the Chinees Communist Coalition- is challenging the current world order. With nearly 70 countries, the Chinees influence on the world is growing every year, and the American-led world order isn't projecting the necessary capabilities to preserve the world order and fight the upcoming Cold War with China. So what does the Chinese Coalition look like, and how does it compare to the West’s coalition?
In China's quest to take a position of influence in the world, they mastered the art of diplomacy and the appetite to build a coherent coalition. Starting in 2013, the Chinees Communist Party adopted the strategy of slowly gathering like-minded states to vote in line with Chinees interest in international institutions. The goal is to change the narrative to that of the Chinees. For example, changing the term “human rights” to mean human rights to economic opportunity and prosperity as appose to the current definition of the right to life and liberty, freedom from slavery and torture, freedom of opinion and expression, the right to work and education, and many more.
China does not believe in the Western idea of alliances but the concept of partnerships. Committing to the security and needs of another country based on a treaty is not in line with Chinees thought. Instead, binding partnerships create dependency and prosperity without dangerous strings attached. In an alliance, one country is tied to another country's security, whereas in partnerships, there is no liability. China prefers this system since, as the stronger party in the partnership, there is the advantage that China can enjoy the fruits of the partnership without committing to the other party.
The West fears the Chinese's influence on international institutions and underdeveloped countries since it threatens their world order. Ray Dalio, a macroeconomist, suggests that the world order functions in large cycles, where each cycle is a world order governed by a different superpower.
Over the past 500 years, there were four cycles: The Habsburg monarchy lost to the Dutch empire, defeated by the English empire, and eventually replaced by the American empire. The American world order is on the declining side of the cycle due to weak leadership, a troubled education system, lack of determination, declining rule of law, high corruption, depleting financial resources, and excessive debt. The Chinees empire is an emerging power and is on the verge of inheriting the next cycle, the next world order.
When a ruling power is threatened to be replaced by a rising power, it usually ends in war. In the past 500 years, there have been 16 cases where an emerging power challenged the existing power. 12 out of the 16 cases ended in war. It is important to note that not every war ends in replacing the current power. Germany challenged the British empire twice in the 20th century and failed. The Soviet Union challenged the US world system and failed as well. Therefore, the upcoming Chinese challenge to the American world order doesn't have to end with a US defeat or a Hot War.
Strong leadership is the only way out of a disastrous future. The Cold War between the US and China is inevitable. The most consequential task of the heads of states in the powerful nations is to keep the war cold until one coalition outlives the other. The Chinees coalition comprises 16 core countries, including Iran, Russia, North Korea, and Venezuela, and an additional 50 countries that vote with the Chinees in the UN and other international institutions.
The American-led coalition comprises NATO, Canada, Japan, South Korea, and most Western democratic countries. It has an additional 20 countries that vote according to US policy in the UN.
Militarily, the Chinees Coalition (RED) is only lagging in airpower; however, in manpower, tanks, naval power, artillery, rocket artillery, labor force, and SPGs, the Chinees coalition has a massive advantage. But besides numbers alone, China is beginning to overcome the technological race with supersonic missiles, 6G network development, and a new Space network that will outperform American capabilities.
Economically, China will likely become the world's largest economy before 2030 and already has more trading partners than the US. In addition, China has significantly invested in the Belt and Road initiative, designed to replace the US trade routes. The final stage of the cycle is when the world leader’s currency is no longer the world's reserve currency. As the US continues to print the USD into the abis, and countries begin to trade in Chinees currency, the US world order might come to an end closer than anticipated.
The US successfully beat the Soviet Union through Deterrence and strong leadership; in the 21st century, the world also seeks strong leadership to keep the upcoming Cold War cold.