China is an ageing economic flop. Hardly a thing to be feared by the West
Polite but inflexible resistance is the best response to Beijing, whose shot at global mastery is way off
The ledger is brutally clear. Xi Jinping’s regime has no allies of global economic weight or credibility.
About 53 countries backed China’s treatment of Hong Kong in the UN Human Rights Council, a body now under the thumb of Beijing. They make up just 4% of the world’s GDP. Most are authoritarian statelets locked into the neo-colonial infrastructure nexus of China’s “belt and road” initiative. The only G20 member to have lined up on China’s side was Mohammad bin Salman’s Saudi Arabia, a struggling middle-income autocracy running out of places to sell its oil.
The list offers a revealing view of the strategic order emerging in the early 2020s. The rich Western and Asian democracies, which still control the international economic system, are coalescing into a united front. China is starting to pay the exorbitant price for its wolf warrior diplomacy...