Although it may not be obvious to some, it is evident that we are now in the midst of a new cold war, this time with China.
A ruthless communist regime, which unleashed a deadly pandemic around the globe and then covered up information about its transmission and the dangers it posed, caused thousands of deaths along with untold damage upon economies worldwide. Despite this, China has not only kept up their attempts to undermine the United States, our allies, and countries everywhere, but have also sped up their plans. They are now using the confusion in America, and across the globe, to advance their agenda in an attempt to overtake us as the world’s supreme power.
Recently, China has taken unprecedented steps in an attempt to absorb Hong Kong into mainland China, passing a new national security law in the semi-autonomous territory which will drastically curtail the rights and freedoms of the people who live there and directly threaten a beacon of free speech and democracy in east Asia.
China has also continued its provocative and bullying behavior in the South China Sea. According to the U.S. State Department, their actions are aimed at the offshore oil and gas development of other claimant states. These actions destabilize the region, and officials warn this could lead to further tensions and eventually a full-scale war.
These continued escalations by Beijing, along with a coordinated propaganda campaign aimed at the United States, warrants a firm response from Washington that will ensure the safety of the United States and the freedom of democracy everywhere.
To be successful in any sort of cold war, trade war, or just a fight for much-needed reforms in China, the U.S. desperately needs allies in the eastern hemisphere. Fortunately, despite the destruction it has caused, the coronavirus pandemic has given America just that opportunity.
With anger, suspicion, and distrust of China growing in countries around the world, the United States must seize the moment to establish relations with countries in the Eastern Hemisphere who are fed up with China and will be a crucial part in any future conflict with Beijing.
The U.S. should strengthen partnerships with its current allies in the region such as Japan, Taiwan, and South Korea, and they must also forge new alliances with countries that are increasingly wary of China’s communist regime and their reliance upon them.
Many countries that are extremely dependent on China have recently shown a willingness to stand up against their strong-arm tactics. This is doubtless due to concern over Beijing’s role in the COVID-19 pandemic, which has caused a rift in China’s relationships with countries worldwide.
Washington must make a concerted attempt to reach out to countries like India, which has been strengthening its relationship with the U.S. for years and has grown increasingly fed up with China’s authoritarian regime. The coronavirus pandemic, along with the India-China border dispute, will only push India closer to Washington. India will undoubtedly prove to be one of our biggest and most key allies in the upcoming power struggle, having the 5th largest economy in the world, which will be crucial to economic leverage over Beijing. They are also the only country that comes close to China in terms of population.
Australia, which Forbes lists as the most China dependent country in the world, would also be a valuable ally. They have already strongly condemned China for their role in covering up coronavirus, called for an investigation into the incident, and despite the economic risks of standing against Beijing, have shown the backbone to stand up against the authoritarian regime and the willingness to decouple themselves from China.
Indonesia, which has deepened its alliance with the U.S. over the past decade also holds an important role in the region. But the country has significant and deep economic ties with China. The United States must make sure to use the lingering and growing distrust of China in the country to form a lasting partnership that will be vitally important in the future.
These are just a few examples of countries in Asia that are hurting from coronavirus, have a growing mistrust of Beijing, and present excellent opportunities for the United States to gain strategic partners in the region.
A new cold war has been thrust upon us, and it is now up to us to take the necessary steps to win. To do this, we must have allies who are also committed to defeating Beijing’s communist regime.
As China attempts to use the pandemic they unleashed on the world to their advantage, the United States must counter this by seizing the opportunity placed before them to ensure that the freedoms of Americans and everyday people around the world are kept safe from a government which seeks to destroy the world as we know it.