China’s economy has slowed its breakneck growth under the weight of the global recession. Now the Chinese people’s resentment seems split between the United States and their own government. Melinda Liu writes for Newsweek:
The latest recession-fueled outburst of America-bashing in China might worry Washington, but it’s even scarier to the rulers in Beijing. Millions of ordinary Chinese are in trouble, and they’re asking why their government is continuing to prop up the United States, the country that practically everyone blames for creating the global economic crisis. Never mind what would happen to the roughly $2 trillion in Chinese foreign reserves that are invested in U.S. securities if Beijing suddenly tried to cut America loose.
[…]the anti-U.S. hard-liners—”economic nationalists,” as they’re known in China—are far from satisfied. Wang Xiaodong, a prominent member of the movement, scoffs at the idea of replacing the dollar with a new IMF-backed reserve currency. “Isn’t the IMF also under the control of the United States?” he asks, with a conspiratorial grin. He says Beijing should simply quit buying U.S. T-bills and invest the money at home instead, building up China’s own infrastructure, defense forces and social services. Wang is one of five authors of a new book, “Unhappy China,” which sold 100,000 copies in just 11 days after its release in mid-March. The book takes Beijing to task not only for coddling the Americans but also for neglecting national defense. Wang and his cohorts say China needs to beef up its Navy if it continues buying up natural resources everywhere from Australia to Africa. “All those commercial contracts mean nothing unless we have aircraft carriers to back them up,” says Wang, “That’s why so many younger Chinese are asking for a strong Navy.”