he US State Department under Mike Pompeo is evidently developing its China strategy based upon a “clash of civilizations” concept, according to some rather disturbing and racist comments made recently by a top official.
The pro-Trump Washington Examiner reports:
“This is a fight with a really different civilization and a different ideology and the United States hasn’t had that before,” Kiron Skinner, the director of policy planning at the State Department, said Monday evening at a security forum in Washington, D.C.
Skinner is leading an effort to develop a concept of U.S.-China relations on the scale of what she called “Letter X” — the unsigned essay by George Kennan, who assessed “the sources of Soviet conduct” in 1947 and outlined the containment strategy that guided American strategists for the rest of the Cold War. China poses a unique challenge, she said, because the regime in Beijing isn’t a child of Western philosophy and history.
“The Soviet Union and that competition, in a way it was a fight within the Western family,” Skinner said, noting Karl Marx’s indebtedness to Western political ideas. “It’s the first time that we will have a great power competitor that is not Caucasian.”
As you might expect, on Twitter, many were shocked by Skinner’s comments — both in the language that she used and in their inaccuracy.
I passionately agree. China is a totalitarian regime run by a guy deeply influenced by twisted nationalism and Leninism. That’s it. No need for “civilization” theory https://t.co/nKkaEyfGoS
— Victor Shih (@vshih2) May 2, 2019
Seems to me #Skinner #Pompeo wrong about a few things: 1. China’s Leninism is absolutely the product of the West (Marx! Lenin!) 2. Russia was not identical to “the west” anyway 3. reducing this important issue to Caucasian/non-C is wrong, & offensive. #GetItRight! #Culture
— Didi Kirsten Tatlow (@dktatlow) May 2, 2019
I am so tired of essentializing rhetoric on China, but it’s downright dangerous when it comes from the White House. If we treat China as timeless, uniform, and alien, we are engaging with a racist myth, not a country with a complex past, diverse population and dangerous state https://t.co/WhA6fKGdPO
— Gina Anne Tam 譚吉娜 (@DGTam86) May 1, 2019