Wolf Warriors, (Peaceful) Reunification, Article 23, oh my!

For careful observers of Chinese domestic and foreign policy over the last decade, most of these recent phenomena and situations are well understood and unsurprising, if not expected. Let's break them down, one by one:

Wolf Warrior: Derived from the blockbuster Chinese film "战狼" (literal translation), and the sequel "战狼2", the term has within the past year been applied to China's more aggressive diplomatic corps. Peaceful Reunification: "和平统一"; for the past 3 decades, the People's Republic of China has pursued a policy of peaceful reunification with the Republic of Taiwan, under the core treatment of "One Country, Two Systems" (a similar approach between Beijing and Hong Kong). The term "Peaceful" was dropped in a recent government work report which Premier Li Keqiang delivered to the legislative body. Article 23: A reference to Hong Kong's Basic Law which states that

"The Hong Kong Special Administrative Region shall enact laws on its own to prohibit any act of treason, secession, sedition, subversion against the Central People's Government, or theft of state secrets, to prohibit foreign political organisations or bodies from conducting political activities in the Region, and to prohibit political organisations or bodies of the Region from establishing ties with foreign political organisations or bodies."

This article has been a point of contention since 2003 when Hong Kong's Legislative Committee first attempted to enact the security law.

For those who are not close observers of Chinese political movement and deliberation, these phenomena all coalescing around the same time seems to indicate a belligerent world power that opposes the United States. However, there is more to the picture than just face value assessment. These all show a picture of Chinese confidence in their political system and economic strength, especially when contrasted against a faltering neoliberal order in the Western world.

The period of time from Deng Xiaopeng until the Global Financial Crisis was ruled by 韬光养晦, or bide your time and do something in the meanwhile. In the past decade, this has shifted to a more ascendant perspective of China's place in the world. As a result, and due to the accumulation of political capital in the past decades, Beijing is ready to go on a policy spending spree and protect its interests. Whether those interests will be substantively challenged or only meet a wall of words has yet to be seen. Photo: Xinhua

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