Warcraft As Statecraft: A Synoptic View of Hegemony from Asia

The opening of BRICS summit in Xiamen China yesterday was instructive, for it taught American force planners how best to view our own weaknesses regarding the dismal science, conflict and trade.  Asian political economies aren’t dovish; Hayek’s concept of an extended order originating spontaneously masked dangerous indigenous configurations of culture that China exploits.  American leadership will need to anticipate offensive behavior in a manner reminiscent of 19th century statesman.  In a word, its back to the future.

In an open joint statement, both Beijing and New Delhi called on the WTO to eliminate U.S. farm subsidies.  You read that right!  And what was the efficient cause of the Arab Spring?  It was skyrocketing prices of staple products from the United States to subsistence economies. Kindly remember, those working at the commanding heights of our economy are specialists, they don’t study the impact of policy; they don’t get paid to think, their job is to keep their job.  Simply put, Lenin’s concept of exporting the revolution has monetary patrimony.  If the U.S. Congress actually dumped farm subsidies, it could wreck havoc.  The equilibrium sought should be from a supply side policy mix of engaged monetary, fiscal leadership.  Although the U.S. greenback is down, our industrial policy is shaped from within the Keynesian confines of Bretton-Woods.  This means we’ve historically been very wary of an appreciative greenback.  If anything, the U.S. should actively seek comity throughout our North American partners in Mexico, South-Central America and Canada to strengthen global food supply chains.  The error is seeking a quick fix  in American food subsidies.  Long term, the U.S. has no interest in the regulated monopoly that has become our farm belt.

Beijing has been on a war footing for two decades.  It’s only becoming apparent now.  It conceives of trade policy identical to OPEC in 1973.  The One Belt-One Road initiative is Keynesian in both outlook and temper; its a policy tool from which Beijing seeks to perpetuate itself by tying its political fortunes to the failed Keynesian multiplier.  China conceives of trade within the confines of a strategic aim or purview.  The American’s don’t and cannot do so, for institutional reasons.

For the American’s to compete, we’ll need to admit that China and other revolutionary regimes are competitors.  Secondly, we’ll need to shape the formal institutions of our Republic to resemble true Constitutional federalism; this means we need institutional memory.

China and other competitors will change up to anticipate our initial advances.  What we can hope to achieve initially is that Beijing and others get tied up in rigid disputes that multiply bilateral strains.  The American regime knows how to work when it is configured properly; decentralized, with hordes of strong human capital sprung from a vibrant civil society.  This isn’t a policy that can be replicated institutionally or formally.

This means we must adhere to a synoptic view of tax reform; viewing it outside the travails of Keynesian gnomes that troll Congress, State houses and dominant media.

What did the Himalayan standoff reveal?

It demonstrated that New Delhi’s apprehension was correct; that Beijing continues to devise racial stratagems to peel off weaker nation states in open, quiet confrontation.  All by the construction of a road through neutral territory held in covenant.  For India and others throughout Asia that aren’t used to being bullied, the U.S. remains their only hope. We’ll need to open up an old framework from the 19th century; one that recognized the cynicism at play in national strategy abroad.  New Delhi was right, the road built on an open plateau in Bhutan will be used to expropriate territorial ambitions.

Here’s the ugly part that we in the west refuse to admit; the Han that rule from Beijing openly seek confrontation with smaller, weaker nation states; not because they can, but because the Han relish a sick social-Darwinian afterthought reminiscent of a certain German corporal; a racial undertone fit for archaic vanquished leadership.

Bring on the Han, their dementia can’t stand the realism of a Truman, Reagan, or Kennedy.

Just ask Berlin!


About William Holland

Systematic Theologian/International Relations
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