Feb 3, 2011
The visit of the president of the People’s Republic of China, Hu Jintao, to Washington has been played up as marking a shift in U.S.-Chinese relations in the direction of new cooperation. On the one hand, it is reported that President Barack Obama played tough and got concessions on trade and on the question of Korea; on the other hand that President Hu gained recognition on the world stage for China as an equal with the U.S.
From a historical point of view, it is a measure of the development of People’s China, economically and technologically,that the chief executive of U.S. imperialism agreed to a state visit with high honors to its president. After all, Washington tried mightily to destroy the Chinese Revolution before and after it triumphed in 1949. It kept People’s China, representing one-fifth of humanity, from its rightful seat in the United Nations for almost a quarter of a century.
But from a more recent perspective, what transpired in Washington was basically the granting of $45 billion in contracts by China to U.S. big business in return for U.S. technology transfers to China. As a concession to U.S. companies, Hu indicated China would allow foreign business to bid on Chinese state contracts to supply technology. China’s present “indigenous innovation” law requires Chinese state enterprises to grant technology contracts only to Chinese companies.
One of the principal strategies of U.S. big business at present is to export its way out of the domestic economic crisis.
This means, among other things, getting more access to the vast Chinese markets. It is reported that President Obama’s new chief of staff, William Daley — a former executive at JPMorgan Chase bank and a director of both Boeing Aircraft and Abbott Laboratories — wanted to make the summit into a trade session for the top corporations.
A special meeting was held between President Hu and 14 executives of the biggest U.S. corporations, including Lloyd
Blankfein of Goldman Sachs, Steve Balmer of Microsoft, Jeffrey Immelt of General Electric (Obama’s new top economic
advisor), and other CEOs of DuPont, Westinghouse Electric, agribusiness giant Cargill, Intel, the Carlyle Group, Dow
Chemical, Coca-Cola and HSBC Holdings.
Boeing, Daley’s former firm, got a $19 billion contract for 200 airplanes. Immelt’s GE got contracts to develop rail and energy projects in return for technology sharing. In addition, over the past few weeks China signed $25 billion in contracts with other large firms in 12 states.
The trip culminated with a joint statement filled with generalities and ambiguous phrases about the two governments
working together to improve regional and global peace and stability; non-interference in each other’s affairs; provisions for contacts between the two military commands; scientific cooperation;and so forth.
One issue discussed at the summit was Chinese military development. China has recently developed a missile with a
900-mile range that is alleged to be able to hit a moving aircraft carrier. It has also developed a stealth fighter plane similar to one employed by the Pentagon. Adm. Michael Mullen, chair of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff, and William Gates, Secretary of Defense, have sharply criticized China for improving its defensive forces and have threatened to develop new weapons systems aimed at China.
At the summit President Hu emphasized that China was not a threat to the U.S. That is certainly true. China has no
warships off the Atlantic or Pacific coasts of the U.S. or in the Caribbean. China’s military is one-thirtieth the size of the
In contrast China is permanently menaced by U.S. aircraft carriers, attendant warships and submarines. The USS George Washington sailed within striking distance of China during the lastcrisis on the Korean peninsula. The U.S.
Seventh Fleet of the Pacific command has 50 to 60 ships, 600 aircraft and 60,000 Navy and Marine forces aimed
at China and the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea. The Pentagon regards the Pacific as a U.S. lake.
So while China is no threat to the U.S., the U.S. is definitely a threat to China.
As for a “new era” flowing out of President Hu’s visit, there was no mention of any agreement for the U.S. to pullback its naval and air armada from the region. There was no pulling back by the Pentagon in developing a Tokyo-Seoul-
Washington axis aimed at the DPRK and the PRC. Nor did Washington agree to stop supplying its Taiwan puppet with
There was no pledge by the Obama administration to cease backing the serfowning feudal god-king, the Dalai Lama,
whose historic goal is to break Tibet away from China. Washington pushed “human rights” for the counterrevolutionary Nobel Peace Prize winner, Liu Xiaobo, author of Charter 08, which calls for privatizing all of China’s economy and dissolving the People’s Republic.
One harmful concession made by President Hu must be mentioned. He agreed to put in the joint statement a phrase about “mutual concern regarding the DPRK’s claimed nuclear enrichment program.” Hopefully this break in solidarity will remain restricted to phrases in joint statements and will not extend to action.
In this connection it is worthy of note that at a state dinner given by the White House for President Hu, pianist Lang
Lang played a famous Chinese song, “My Motherland.” It was the theme song of a 1956 Chinese movie called “Battle on Shangganling Mountain” (Triangle Mountain) and is universally recognized in China. It is about the bravery during the Korean War of troops from the Chinese People’s Volunteer Army, who fought U.S. “jackals” alongside their Korean brothers and won the battle for the mountain.
Hopefully, the historic relationship depicted in the song and forged in blood between the Chinese and Korean people
will prevail, joint statements notwithstanding.
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