President Trump is impressed with his friend President Xi’s recent coronation as paramount leader of China.
Indeed, Xi has exceeded all the leaders of Communist China except Mao. He is today the most powerful authoritarian ruler in the world, both because of his consolidation of power in China and because of the country’s dynamic economy. But Xi’s standing is even greater due to his vision, which he is implementing through a newly empowered and invigorated Communist Party.
As Xi made plain in his 3.5 hour speech to the Party Congress, he intends on the nation to be a great modern “socialist” state in the center of world affairs and dominate in its own near territory (i.e., the waters, islands and neighbors in the Far East).
Trump’s goals of dealing with the North Korean threat and trade imbalances are worthwhile tactics, but his nationalism and isolationism makes it near impossible for America to lead on alliances and multi-lateral trade that is necessary to counter China and establish America’s strategy in the Far East.