The empty chair at the Nobel Peace Prize award ceremony in Oslo on Dec. 10 will no doubt be a cause for Western politicians and commentators to again condemn China’s authoritarian regime. Please read the article in The New York Times here:
The Norwegian Nobel Committee that awarded the Peace Prize to the jailed dissident Liu Xioabo represents those in the West who believe a color revolution such as those that took place in Eastern Europe would lead China down the path of Western-style liberal democracy.
In this, they are utterly ignorant of China’s history and the nature of modern China. The revolution they seek, if it happened, would bring anything but liberty and responsibility. The revolution that is taking place they miss completely.
Given the opacity of its political system and penchant for behind-the-scenes decision-making, subtle but important signals in Beijing often get lost in transmission. Such appears to be the case with the plenary session of the ruling Chinese Communist Party held in October. Predictably, the West focused its attention on the promotion of Mr. Xi Jinping, the heir designate, as the most notable accomplishment of the meeting. An even more consequential political development was completely overlooked: The final communiqué.
On the surface, the communiqué seemed to be full of official clichés and a return to a strident claim of “socialism with Chinese characteristics.” But rather than an empty slogan, the phrase embodies a consistent developmental and political strategy that seeks to strike a difficult balance — achieving high growth rates through a market economy while relying on one-party political institutions to ensure social justice and peace. This strategy is the anchor of China’s relatively peaceful emergence into the global order.