It really takes an overdose of patience and a long stretch of mental elasticity to sit, watch, listen, read and otherwise follow the way the Western mainstream media covers major international events today, specifically the situations in Ukraine. And involving Taiwan, vis-à-vis and at the virtual exclusion of all else, including catastrophic hunger and growing poverty affecting millions and hundreds of thousands on different continents, as nations and people battle displacement by floods in Pakistan and Nigeria and emergence of re-emergence cholera outbreaks in countries as far apart as Haiti and Lebanon, plus military conflicts in Ethiopia and involving Somalia and Kenya.
And although Europe and North America, Australia, New Zealand and China, Asian and Pacific powers are also feeling the latest effects of advanced Climate Change and facing the worst economic crises in the world’s seven richest nations (the Group of Seven (or G7), breeding political crises sparked by the worst inflation rates and with recession in clear sight, you’d think the only challenges facing Planet Earth today are ‘The Ukraine War’ and the ‘China-Taiwan Conflict, or the military standoff in the Korean Peninsula.
Take the China-Taiwan situation, which was kept in the headlines despite other global affairs of more or at least equal interest and concern to the rest of the world, if only because of their sheer impact.
Take the see-saw political crisis facing Prime Minister Liz Truss and the ruling Conservative Party in the UK, the mountainous challenge facing President Joe Biden and the ruling Democratic Party in the US ahead of the November 4 mid-term elections, the reduction in expressions and actions of tension between China and the US over Taiwan…
But the UK and UK press continued to paint the People’s Republic of China (PRC) in the usual bad light, focusing this past weekend on the 20th Congress of the Communist Party of China (CPC) and the re-election of President Xi Jinping as its General Secretary.
As per political tradition spanning over a century, the position of General Secretary has always been the maximum leadership one in the CPC – and most communist parties worldwide; and China’s first holder was Chairman Mao Tse Tung, founding chairman of the CPC, who was also the country’s president from 1949 when the PRC was founded and died in 1976, after who every successor has been a General Secretary.
There was no term limit on leadership anywhere until it became an unwritten political norm in The West in the last decade of the Last Century and it was later adopted in China, but in 2018 the CPC decided to do away with the ‘politically correct’ as its future plans for the PRC required the fruitful, steady and sustained leadership of Xi Jinping, under whose watch the party grew bigger and stronger, the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) became the second most-powerful army on earth, the economy sealed its place as the world’s second largest economy – and, according to the United Nations (UN) — the first nation to eradicate poverty.
The CPC celebrated its centenary in 2021 and with over 96 million members, is the world’s biggest communist party; and its 20th Congress is also a curtain-raiser for the PRC’s future, as it heads to its first century in 2049.
The CPC also five years ago adopted ‘Xi Jinping Thought’ as its main guiding light in the period leading to the PRC’s centenary in 2049, when it also to have established a society based on ‘Socialism with Chinese Characteristics’.
The BBC and CNN have insisted on portraying Xi as an autocratic leader who gives positions to himself and dictates what’s on the mind of every one of the 96 million CPC supporters or China’s 1.9 billion people, treating his re-election for a third term as some sort of unpardonable violation of democracy and democratic principles, or as if the CPC, as a communist party, should not have or enjoy or have the same levels of public support as ruling parties in Western Europe or North America.
They ignore that only just 81,300 Conservative Party members, out of a UK population of over 68 million, voted to make Liz Truss the UK’s current Prime Minister; and that Joe Biden was elected president with 307 Electoral College votes, while Xi Jinping would be re-elected General Secretary by 2,996 CPC Central Committee delegates representing 1.9 billion.
Leading to the congress, the mainstream international media focused on Xi’s sure third term and behaved like his re-election was a violation of the sanctity of a sacrosanct two-term rule that applies forever everywhere.
When the congress came and Xi’s address did not come up with the sort of ‘bombshell’ headliner announcements they’d wished for relating to the PRC’s Zero COVID and Beijing’s stance on Taiwan, they concluded that Xi had ‘made himself Chairman of Everything’ and US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken was quoted as having claimed, without producing a single word of evidence, that China would now “hasten the unification of Taiwan at an advanced pace.”
But Washington is caught in a quagmire over Taiwan, as Biden and the political establishment well understand the US military’s reluctance to go to war against China, especially as the two sides’ military establishments have pledged to warn each other if the political establishment on either side decided to press the nuclear button.
Xi Jinping has not made himself President for Life, but instead has been vested with the reaffirmation of the confidence of the vast majority, if not all his party’s leading members.
And if anything, it’s those proposing, promoting and pursuing political independence for Taiwan, based on promised military support that just won’t come, who will now have to worry about President Xi’s latest repeated declaration that while China wants peaceful reunification, it will not renounce use for force.
And Xi and the CPC have also made it clear that “Only China can solve the Taiwan issue!”