Saturday, August 26, 2017


BELT AND ROAD INITIATIVE WILL DRIVE EAST AND WEST REBALANCE IN 21ST CENTURY, THE REJUNVENATION OF CHINA WILL THUS BRING HARMONY TO THE WORLD BY FRANCIS C W FUNG, PH.D. In 2013 President of China, Xi Jingping, announced his dream for China to return to its historical glory of world power. The China dream of rejuvenation is the most important dream of all Chinese people in modern time. The same year he also announced the ambitious Belt and Road Initiative to revive the ancient Silk Road to reconnect China with Europe through Central Asia via land and sea roads. By connecting the world through communities of common destiny with land and digital infrastructures, trade and people exchanges and sea ports he hopes to realize China rejuvenation by bringing win-win prosperity to the world. This noble goal is fully supported by the full spectrum of Chinese public including government officials, think tanks, universities and many other countries along the belt and Road initiative according to Nadege Rolland in her 2017 book titled “China’s Eurasian Century.” In the 2017 Belt and Road International Forum in Beijing, attended by over 100 world nations and thousands of leading business and press representatives, Xi delivered the keynote speech to reaffirm his goal of sharing China’s development with the world. Despite the overwhelming support of the B and R Initiative there remain some doubters such as the reigning power U.S. and the wannabe India. India went as far as to boycott the forum as the only major nation, out of sour grape mentality. Regardless of the many challenges in achieving such a grand holistic goal that will benefit the world by bringing prosperity and harmony, the Chinese nation is unified behind Xi Jingping to persist for the long term according to Nadege Rolland. In terms of historical perspective the present author wishes to offer following ideas and suggestions that may have important bearing on the long term success of the B and R Initiative. In her 2017 book, titled “The US v. China in Asia: A new Cold War” , Judd Woodward elucidated in detail how the US launches a nothing spared cold war to contain China’s rise. On surface this may seem to impede China’s progress, however on more in-depth analysis this actually will unite China behind Xi’s B and R Initiative. The US ascended to the only major power in the world is in no small measure due to the impetus of the 20th Century Cold War waged by the Soviet Union against the US. To counter the USSR, US fine-tuned the free world ideology to rally world nations behind her to mount her rise as world leader. We must be reminded that the word challenge in Chinese means danger and opportunity simultaneously. Likewise, the counter force to US extreme cold war against China is for China to unite behind Xi’s noble B and R initiative. Together with the support of the whole nation China can now focus on the B and R Initiative objectives to its eventual success. In the process, China can learn from the US experience of using think tanks, common values and commerce to expand her influence. The execution of B and R Initiative shall be gradually accomplished by all government, non-government, private business, state business, think tanks and cultural entities. Xi Jingping is right by placing state enterprise in the lead. China is unique in that her state enterprises have enormous resources that they can bring to bear to open the drive followed by private enterprises. Once the momentum is created, many smaller nations will willingly join because of their years of suffering under US hegemony. The philosophical guidance of B and R Initiative is Chinese Confucius teaching “The great way of community of common destiny” (Da Dao Zi Xin, Tien Hsia Wei Kung) advocated by Xi Jingping in many of his speeches. This Tien Hsia philosophy was the driving force that gave China’s 5000 years of peace and harmony. This is the open and inclusive philosophy that accepts diversity, equality, respectfulness without boundary, without prejudice that maintains the world in a dynamic balance. Just at the end, when the B and R initiative is fully implemented East and West rebalance will reach a dynamic harmony balance. This will be very different from US hegemony during 20th Century trying to force American standard and democracy on to developing nations by war. Regardless of its commonly accepted noble goal of peace and harmony through community of common destiny, B and R initiative will be resisted by US and India because of their own selfish desire to retain control and influence. However, US is on the decline because of its nationalistic withdrawal and turning inward under the Trump administration, while India has yet to become an economic and military power. During 20th Century the USSR had ambition to challenge the US but communism was not a competitive economic force. Currently US political grid lock and industrial decline will also render it ineffective to exert its leadership position acquired during 20th Century. Without the necessity of ideology forced feed to other nations, the Belt and Road Initiative philosophy of community of common destiny will grow harmoniously by infrastructure, digital and physical, commerce, people, and communication exchanges. Chinese win-win prosperity sharing can thus benefit the whole world without the need of one sided ideology to tie up the world. On the ground, Chinese business drivers such as high speed train, bike sharing, cashless society and Ecommerce and etc., voted most popular by Belt and Road Initiative citizens, will spread rapidly around the world by virtue of their popularity. With these and other Chinese commerce success, will follow Chinese culture and Tien Hsia philosophy just like US democracy followed US commerce success during 20th Century. When Tien Hsia philosophy spreads around the world, the rebalance of East and West will have arrived. World harmony and East and West rebalance dynamic coexistence will finally be realized! Francis C W Fung, Ph.D. Director General World Harmony Organization San Francisco, CA, USA