February 26, 2021
In a quest for geopolitical advantage, China is casting its lot with the most despised reactionaries of Islamdom—the predatory generals of Egypt and Syria, the feuding tyrants of the Persian Gulf, and the fossilized police states of Central Asia.
Chinese people who once looked forward to wider freedom—like Hong Kong they often said—now see their future foreshadowed in the surveillance state of Xinjiang. The persecution of religion extends beyond Uighurs to Muslims in general and to all worshipers outside of state-control. And religion is just one of many basic liberties vanishing across the mainland.
How China Spurs Global Dissent
Oxford University Press Blog
America’s loss of prestige and influence has been profound, swift, and perhaps irreversible. But China’s limits are even more severe. Its search for global respect is hampered by lingering ethnocentrism and by ham-fisted leaders who fear their most talented citizenry, including members of the ruling party. As a result, neither the United States nor China can live up to the superpower status it craves. The two countries are stymied not only by one another, but by their inherent social divisions and by the multiple critics and opponents they create around the world.