Anyone who has at least some idea about the theory of international relations should remember the oft-quoted formula put forward by the father of British geopolitics, Halford Mackinder: “Who rules the Heartland commands the World-Island; who rules the World-Island commands the world.” For those who are sceptical about geopolitical constructs and terminology, this logical chain may seem like a meaningless shamanic incantation. Over the course of a century, “Mackinder’s formula” was repeatedly criticized, corrected, repudiated, anathematized, parodied and ridiculed. And yet, strange as it may seem, not only has this formula survived an entire century, but it is also perhaps more relevant today than it was a hundred years ago.
Of course, the question hinges on how we understand the concept of Heartland. Mackinder interpreted it as the geographical centre of Eurasia, or, more precisely, as the massive central and north-eastern part of the Asian continent, which on the whole coincided with the Asian areas ruled by the Russian Empire and the Soviet Union. Today, it seems obvious that the “Eurasian core” must be sought south of the harsh, poorly developed and scarcely populated Siberian plains and barren deserts of Central Asia. Just like in the days of Mackinder, Siberia and Central Asia remain repositories of raw materials and energy resources. Just like before, these lands may be considered the “great natural fortress” of the land peoples, adjusted for the new arsenal of means of projecting military power that appeared in the 20th century. However, these lands did not become a true “axis of history”: contrary to Mackinder’s prophecies, their transport infrastructure remained incomplete and disconnected, while their role in the development of the Eurasian continent over the past 100 years has shrunk rather than grown.
At the risk of incurring the righteous indignation of the current geopolitical orthodox, let us postulate that the Eurasian Heartland of the 21st century is actually what Mackinder saw as the “inner crescent.” Primarily China and India, in relation to which the rest of the Eurasian massif – Russia, Central Asia, Southeast Asia, the Middle East and even the extended European peninsula of the Asian mainland – act as continental limitrophe states. Despite the undeniable significance of these border states to European history, politics, economics and security, the fate of Europe depends primarily on how relations in the new Heartland (that is, between China and India) unfold. And the future of the whole world to a great degree depends on the fate of Eurasia. This is one of Mackinder’s main points, and it is by no means outdated.
The Prerequisites for Consolidation
It would seem that there are no fundamental obstacles to the consolidation of the Heartland: the interests of Beijing and New Delhi coincide on most major international issues. China and India have much in common. Both countries are, in their own way, historically stable and internally cohesive alternatives to Atlantic civilization. China and India are, along with the Arabic East (and to a lesser extent Tropical Africa south of the Sahara), the two most important points of the crystallization of “non-western” ideals. The fact that China and India are growing stronger is the most significant indicator that the “western” stage in the development of the system of international relations has drawn to a close.
As powerful drivers of economic growth both in Eurasia and around the world, both China and India are currently experiencing a stage of long-term economic, cultural and civilizational upheaval. Neither has fully overcome the deep trauma of national consciousness caused by their status as outsiders in global politics in the 19th and 20th century, and this trauma continues to have an impact on the historical narratives that dominate China and India and the foreign policy ambitions that emanate from these narratives. Beijing and New Delhi are “revisionist” players on the global stage in the sense that both China and India are interested in revising the old rules of the game that serve the interests of the “collective West.” China is leading a broad economic and financial offensive – from Central Europe to Latin America. India, lagging behind China in terms of foreign economic expansion, is focusing instead on closing the political gap by laying claim to a permanent seat on the UN Security Council.
The two countries are exposed to all the standard “growing pains” – the negative side effects of rapid economic and social growth. Both China and India suffer from severe environmental problems, a shortage of natural resources, growing social inequality and widespread corruption. In addition to this, there are pockets of separatism and terrorism in both countries. China and India are also witnessing a conflict between modernization and traditionalist forces. The concept of “national sovereignty” is paramount in both states, and any attempt to interfere in their domestic affairs is met with hostility. People in both countries question the stability of the current model of socioeconomic development, and many fear or predict inevitable crises and upheavals in the future.
Historically, relations between India and China have always been less conflict-ridden than, say, the relations between the Islamic and Christian worlds in the west of the Eurasian continent. In a sense, it is fair to speak not only of the economic, cultural and spiritual compatibility of these two ancient civilizations, but also of the fact that these aspects have penetrated the other country and even complement one another. There are numerous examples of this – from the epic history of the Great Silk Road to the equally impressive chronicle of how Buddhism spread across Eastern Asia. In essence, the consolidation of a China–India Heartland would not mean the creation of something fundamentally new, but simply the natural reunification of a torn Eurasia, the restoration of a recently lost continental unity.
Hence, there are objective prerequisites for the consolidation of a new Heartland. It is worth adding here that, while recognizing all the difficulties and tactical losses, such a consolidation would serve the long-term interests of both countries. The implementation of the joint China–India project would contribute to the stabilization of the geopolitical situation in the entire Eurasian space and open up fundamentally new opportunities for transcontinental cooperation in various fields.
It would not be out of place to draw a parallel with post-War Western Europe here, when the reconciliation between France and Germany led to the launch of European integration processes. In turn, it was ultimately France and Germany that benefitted most from this process: the political will and the willingness to compromise demonstrated by the leaders in Paris and Bonn paid off time after time in the following decades.
The numerous benefits of consolidating the Eurasian heartland are too obvious to not be a subject of contemplation on both sides of the Himalayas. Relations between Beijing and New Delhi have, for at least the past six decades, developed more along the lines of a rivalry than cooperation – and this rivalry has on more than one occasion turned into direct confrontation. Why is this the case? Could it be the subjective mistakes of the leadership? Personal ambitions of leadership? The underhand practices of internal forces? The tragic accidents of history? Or perhaps there are some objective “ force majeure circumstances” that stand in the way of a new Heartland coming together?
The Dimensions of the Eurasian Schism
Let us start with what everyone already knows – the two countries represent very different types of government. The differences between China and India today are greater than those between France and Germany 50 years ago. While China is much farther away from Europe than India, it is, on the whole, considerably closer in terms of being a nation state in the European mould. Despite the fact that there are a significant number of national minorities in China and substantial regional differences, ethnic Chinese (Han Chinese) are a single people and make up more than 90 per cent of the country’s population. Of the 34 Chinese provinces, including the autonomous regions and cities of central subordination, only Taiwan falls outside the vertical power system of governance, for obvious reasons.
India does not have a dominant national people. In terms of its ethnocultural and linguistic diversity, the Indian subcontinent does not resemble a separate European state or China, but rather the European Union as a whole. And in terms of religious diversity, the multi-structural nature of the economy and the regional disparities, India goes way beyond the whole of Europe put together. India is made up of 29 states and seven union territories, which exist in a state of complex political interaction. India is essentially a grandiose integration project in South Asia that is primarily turned inwards rather than outwards. If we stretch the analogies somewhat further, we can say that, as a single state, China has the same problems in its dialogue with the eclectic and insulated India that centralized Russia has in its interactions with the amorphous and insulated European Union.
Evidently, the historical trajectories of the two countries have also diverged greatly, especially over the past 250 years. India was a British colony, and the nearly 200 years of British rule left an indelible imprint not only on the country’s political system, but also on its culture. China, on the other hand, has never been colonized by a foreign country. While British democracy was a “system-forming” factor for independent India, communist China regarded the Soviet Union of the 1950s as a model to be emulated. Despite the fact that both countries have moved far from their original models of the mid-20th century, there are no grounds to suggest that their political or economic systems have drawn any closer.
In theory, the China–India partnership could even benefit from the fact that their political systems are so different: China would assume the main role in its interaction with various authoritarian regimes, while India would take the lead when it comes to developing ties with western liberal-democratic regimes. In practice, however, the dissimilarity of the systems hinders cooperation and, more importantly, mutual understanding. In is noteworthy that Beijing has found it far easier to establish relations with Moscow in the 21st century than with New Delhi, although the history of China–Russia relations is far more dramatic and controversial than the history of China–India relations.
Since China and India are the two largest countries in continental Asia, competition for natural resources, foreign markets, control of transport corridors and influence over common neighbours is inevitable. The close proximity of the two major powers gives rise to border disputes: the countries share 4000 km border, and the problem right now is not even about resolving territorial disputes, but merely about preserving the territorial status quo and preventing an escalation. The sides feel tempted to support various instruments of influence in each other’s territories. What is more, the question of what best meets the development needs of other Asian countries – Chinese socialism or Indian democracy – remains open.
Trade between China and India is growing at a rapid pace; however, both India and China are more focused on global markets than they are on each other. And for decades they have been purchasing the main resources needed for modernization – investments and modern technologies – from the West, often competing directly with each other for them. Bilateral trade remains asymmetrical, with Chinese exports to India far outweighing its imports from that country. Moreover, Chinese economic activity in India is far from always seen by the latter in an exclusively positive light.
A stable balance of powers between China and India in Asia is hindered by the fact that, right now, China is stronger than India both economically and militarily, and this asymmetry is likely to persist for the foreseeable future. A consolidated Eurasian Heartland would be less of an equal partnership than that of France and Germany in the second half of the 20th century.
India is still dogged by painful memories of the 1962 Sino–Indian Border Conflict. The model of Asia and a “closed” system is thus advantageous for Beijing, with China’s dominance in this system being in no doubt. For the same reason, New Delhi is interested in an “open” Asia, in which the asymmetry in the balance of powers between China and India could be compensated by introducing external players (who are, of course, on India’s side) into the mix.
The Interests of External Players
The interests of the United States in Asia are obvious and depend very little on the change of administration in the White House, although Donald Trump’s team has articulated these interests more clearly and more gruffly than its predecessors. Washington cannot but fear the consolidation of the European Heartland and will therefore continue to capitalize on the deepening contradictions in China–India relations. Naturally, it is trying to manage this process somehow without steering it towards a large-scale military conflict with unpredictable consequences.
Today we are witnessing an attempt by the United States to replicate the successful approaches of Henry Kissinger taken in the 1970s and to build a Eurasian geopolitical triangle. The difference is that the USSR is replaced by China, and China is replaced by India. This explains the increased attention of the United States to New Delhi and the persistent attempts to involve India in multilateral groupings that include allies of the United States that are located on the island periphery of the Eurasian continent, namely Japan and Australia (the concept of a “democratic Indo-Pacific”). If Washington had succeeded in achieving the sustainable institutionalization of these groupings in the form of a military-technical alliance similar to NATO, this would have created long-term guaranteed preventing the consolidation of the Heartland. However, at this juncture, any format of allied relations with Washington is politically unacceptable for the Indian elite, which is pushing for the preservation of the country’s strategic independence. What is more, India cannot sacrifice its continental Eurasian partners (primarily Moscow and Tehran) – not even for the sake of friendship with Washington.
The European Union is less interested in the preservation, much less the exacerbation, of the confrontation between China and India. Of course, the consolidation of the Heartland would present a serious challenge for Europe too, but one that is more to do with economics than geopolitics. The formation of a single Eurasian economic space would undoubtedly speed up the displacement of Europe as the economic centre of activity in Eurasia to Asia and reduce the role of the European Union in the Eurasian and global economies. On the other hand, China and India are two of the most promising foreign markets for the European Union, and the further development of these markets in line with the strategic interests of Brussels.
As far as the European Union is concerned, the main question is: On what basis can the consolidation of the Eurasian Heartland take place? Of course, Brussels would like to see Eurasian consolidation based on European standards, in compliance with European procedures and in line with European standards. The worst option for Brussels would be the gradual “economic absorption” of India by China and the implementation of the Eurasian integration process based on something that is entirely different from the European vision (for example, on the implementation of the One Road, One Belt initiative).
Russia’s interests in the various development scenarios for China–India relations are the subject of heated debates within the country’s expert community. On the one hand, it is often argued that maintaining tension in relations between Beijing and New Delhi makes Moscow a more valuable partner for both sides. Right now, Russia’s relations with China and India are better than those between China and India, meaning that it occupies the most advantageous position in this triangle. Based on this logic, we can assume that the consolidation of the Eurasian Heartland around the China–India axis would entail a further shift in the Eurasian centre of gravity towards the south of Russia’s borders. This would marginalize Russia even further as a participant in the Eurasian community.
On the other hand, it is safe to predict that attempts to capitalize on the contradictions between China and India will inevitably raise suspicions both in Beijing and in New Delhi, cause them to doubt the sincerity of Russia’s actions, etc. It is easy to imagine a situation in which Moscow will be unable to maintain its neutral position and be forced to choose between its two most important partners in Asia, and whatever choice it makes will inevitably entail major losses. Let us not forget that the escalation of the confrontation between China and India – a factor that stands in the way of the consolidation of the Heartland – would leave the door wide open for the United States, which is not likely to be among Moscow’s friends any time soon. Moreover, such an escalation is fraught with the risk of a major military conflict breaking out on the continent, and this would inevitably affect Russia’s security. To summarize the advantages and disadvantages of consolidation for Russia, the only reasonable conclusion is that the expected benefits of a consolidated Heartland clearly outweigh the potential costs.
Let us make it clear right away – whatever Russia’s role in the consolidation of the Eurasian Heartland, it will by no means be decisive. China–India relations have their own internal logic and their own dynamics that no external player (be it the United States, the European Union or Russia) can change. It would appear that, as the stronger party in these bilateral relations, China should go the extra mile to reduce suspicion and gain New Delhi’s trust. We could argue about what steps need to be taken and in what order, but this, strictly speaking, is not an issue for Russian foreign policy. However, this does not mean that Russia does not have a role in this most important issue.
On December 1, 2018, an attempt was made on the side-lines of the G20 Summit in Buenos Aires to step up the activities of the mechanism of tripartite cooperation between Russia, China and India (the RIC countries) and resume the practice of regular high-level meetings after a 12-year hiatus. According to Vladimir Putin, these meetings should focus on various aspects of security and the fight against protectionism and politically motivated restrictions in international trade. Developing these ideas, Prime Minister of India Narendra Modi identified four possible areas for cooperation: regional and global stability, economic prosperity, the exchange of experience in areas of mutual interest, and cooperation on how to respond to emerging challenges. Similar thoughts were expressed by the President of the People’s Republic of China, Xi Jinping, who stressed the special responsibilities of the three powers to support regional and global stability.
In recent years, the RIC format has remained in the shadow of the more representative five-party cooperation structure that includes Brazil and South Africa (together, the five countries make up the BRICS association). Without belittling the significance of the latter two countries, it is worth noting that the geographical expansion of RIC into BRICS entailed certain institutional costs: the two non-Eurasian countries had their own tasks and priorities that differed from the agenda of the original Eurasian members. The fact that the last presidential election was won by Jair Balsonara, a far-right congressman, the so-called “Donald Trump of Brazil” raises a number of questions about the future of the five-party structure. In any case, it would surely be a grave miscalculation for Russian policy to “dissolve” RIC into BRICS completely.
In all likelihood, in the near future, tripartite summits will be held on the side-lines of larger multilateral events (G20 summits, BRICS, the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation, the Asia–Europe Meeting, etc.). However, if everything is limited to brief and infrequent interactions between leaders, statements of coinciding positions or even the signing of general political declarations, then this will do little in terms of the consolidation of the Heartland. It is necessary to articulate, in a frank manner, the existing differences with regard to the most serious problems facing Eurasia. The leaders of the three countries should focus on the problems that are standing in the way of consolidation of the Eurasian space.
At the same time, considering the fact that these trilateral meetings are inevitably short, the issues raised should be studied thoroughly beforehand by experts and the relevant ministries in the track 1.5 and track 2 formats and with a view to developing specific “road maps.” It is precisely the specifics that have traditionally been lacking in joint statements adopted at the end of the annual meetings of RIC foreign ministers. Another urgent task that could help solve the problem of trust between the Chinese and Indian militaries is the creation of a permanent tripartite mechanism for military consultations and the holding of regular military exercises.
A practical political trialogue could begin with an open discussion of such issues as the future of Syria and Afghanistan, which are of great importance for all three participants. Equally significant are the development of individual functional dimensions of the Eurasian Heartland – joint initiatives in the fight against terrorism, managing migration flows, food and energy security, issues of international information exchange and the development of artificial intelligence. It is from the widest possible set of such functional regimes, not from old or new rigid institutional blocs, that the new Eurasian Heartland should be built.
India and China are Arctic Council observer states. As one of the leading members of this organization, Russia could suggest to its partners that they discuss Arctic issues together so that none of them could have any suspicions about Moscow possibly harbouring a position on these issues that could be considered “pro-China” or “pro-India.”
And, of course, more active trilateral interaction on issues that go beyond the geographical boundaries of the Eurasian continent would serve as a powerful incentive for the consolidation of the Heartland. The future of multilateral arms control. The reform of the United Nations, the World Trade Organization and other global organizations. The development of international public law in the 21st century. Climate change and environmental issues. The management of technological progress. If Russia, China and India develop a united position on these and many other issues, it will carry far greater weight on the international arena than the individual opinions of each of these countries.
Ultimately, the Eurasian Heartland of the 21st century is not just a geopolitical, or a geo-economic concept. It represents, to a certain extent, common or similar views of leading Eurasian states on the future of the world order and a strategy for restoring manageability to a world that is coming apart at the seams. It is a joint sense of global stability and a common readiness to look beyond the narrow horizons of immediate national interests. It is only in the presence of such a community that the new Heartland can become the “axis of history” the illustrious father of British geopolitics and member of the Privy Council of the United Kingdom Halford Mackinder wrote about, albeit in an entirely different context and according to a completely different logic.
First published in our partner RIAC
The role of CPC in supporting leadership schools in democratic countries
The Department of International Communication is officially under the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China “CPC”, known by its former name (International Department “ID” or External Department).
It has played a major role in introducing the policies of China and its ruling Communist Party, since the establishment of the External Department of Political Liaison of the Party in 1951, especially those its contacts and communications with (communist and leftist orientations, as well as all other intellectual and ideological currents, in addition to its keenness to communicate with international think tanks and research, and the most prominent academics around the world).
Through my academic experience, academic and research closeness by virtue of my specialization and my in-depth study in the politics of the Communist Party of China, I have been able to analytically approach all departments and committees of the ruling Communist Party and its local grassroots branches in all regions, provinces and autonomous regions of mainly ethnic nationalities in China, in addition to my PhD thesis has focused on tracking and analyzing all policies related to the Communist Party of China, especially the internal ones, which gave me the opportunity to get acquainted with the most prominent comrades in the ruling Communist Party in China and all the visions of the members of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China and its political office, and my attempt to extensively and permanently review a number of (Documents issued by the archives of the Communist Party Library and its main sessions. Perhaps I had the luck to see old and rare archival documents dating back to the 1950s, and I was fortunate to be close to all international intellectual and research projects aimed at studying the history of the Communist Party of China, its main stations, and the main difficulties and challenges. and patterns of relationship with the powers of the West).
– Based on my academic and analytical understanding of the most prominent roles of the “External Department of Political Communication of the Communist Party of China”, as an academic and expert specialized in Chinese political affairs, I was able to track and monitor the most prominent main roles of the “International Political Liaison Committee of the Communist Party of China”, and its relations and contacts in the past and present, given the importance of the work of tthis international committee in conducting the basic planning and policies of the Communist Party, as the following:
My research and academic exposure, as an expert in Chinese political affairs, came to the most prominent policies of the ruling Communist Party in China and its internal and then external relations through the Foreign Department of the Central Committee, with referring to many (recordings and jottings archives for all of the memories and documents during the Cold War era), and the most prominent rare communist documents that I dealt with, which enabled me academically to study, research, and become familiar with that era that is absent from the minds of new generations, especially my fellow young researchers and academics to study the role of the Communist Party of China and its relevant committee. Through external contacts with the world, in support of the (national liberation movements in Africa and the world during the fifties and sixties), and even an extensive personal and academic acquaintance with the most prominent aspects of the old relations between (the Nasserist era in the history of Egypt for the late Egyptian leader “Gamal Abdel Nasser” and the late Chinese leader, comrade “Zhou Anlai”).
My academic focus on the content of the work of the “External Department of Political Communication of the ruling Communist Party in China” was a pivotal factor in understanding China’s extended relations during ancient periods, and perhaps my study of that ancient era in which the complex conditions of my study led me to reach some new academic and analytica results, and the most important for me personally, was my ability to (rewrite and review the era of the late Egyptian President “Nasser” and the Free Officers in the history of Egypt and the main contacts of the leader “Gamal Abdel Nasser” with China).
As a researcher and academic concerned with Chinese affairs and the policies of the ruling Communist Party, I was able to understand some ancient eras, due to tracking the work and monitoring of the roles of the “International Liaison Committee of the Communist Party”, especially after looking at an old archive of the “Cold War Project”, which I got close to historically and archivally. As an integrated international academic work, I approached its researchers, to understand how the old leaders of the Communist Party of China think during the (period of international liberation movements from Western colonialism) and compare them with the current communist leaders, and try to understand all Western theories that provided different and varied interpretations to understand the mechanism of thinking and formation of the Communist Party of China.
Perhaps the new and very rare matter in research and analysis, which occupied my mind and analysis for a long time, because there were no serious studies about it in the first place, is (an academic research and analysis on the extent of the aspects of the relationship between the external department of the international communication of the Communist Party of China and the Department of Tourism of the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs, during the era of the fifties in introducing China’s policies globally), especially in front of foreigners and visitors, given that the establishment of an independent department for tourism in China within the Chinese Foreign Ministry in the fifties, which made me pause for a long time to understand: the extent of the relationship between the (Department of Tourism and the International Liaison Committees) of the Communist Party of China, given that they basically mean to improve China’s image internationally and to understand, explain and interpret its policies around the world?
In my personal and academic analytical opinion, it’s not possible to understand all those historical epochs and stages of the Communist Party of China, without a (precise analytical understanding of the working mechanism of the Committee for Communication and External Action of the Communist Party of China), which is entrusted with communicating primarily with the outside world and other parties in the world since the history of its establishment and establishment in the early fifties of the last century.
In general, the “International Liaison Committee of the CPC Central Committee” aims to explain and clarify the policies of the Communist Party of China in the first place, define its achievements and clarify its most important roles internally and externally, and most importantly to respond to those American and Western accusations, and the “CPC” leaders always emphasize that “China is not interfere in the internal affairs of other countries to spread a certain style or ideology or to export the Chinese model of the Communist Party globally”. The Committee for “Liaison and Communication with the Outside World” of the Communist Party of China has also succeeded in (supporting many leadership schools in a number of African democratic countries, and providing educational programs created by the Communist Party of China).
The International Liaison Committee of the Central Committee of the ruling Communist Party of China was able to highlight many of China’s global development efforts for leaders of foreign political parties and to remove confusion and ambiguity about policies related to China and its ruling Communist Party with the constant emphasis of the Chinese leadership on the keenness of the Chinese leadership of the Secretary-General of the Communist Party of China, Comrade “Xi Jinping”, to adopt many of the most profitable and beneficial development initiatives for the world, especially for the marginalized, the poor and developing countries, such as: (Belt and Road Initiative, Dialogue among Civilizations, Exchange and Civilized Cooperation among all, the common destiny of humanity, win-win principle, mutual benefits, pursuit of development and cooperation, South-South cooperation, dialogue and narrowing the gap between North and South), and the other Chinese global development initiatives.
It is noted here that (the international or external section of the Communist Party of China), has no reservations about any trend, type, or intellectual or ideological current adopted by any of those foreign political parties that deal with it around the world, given that the leaders of the Communist Party of China can deal with all of the (right-wing parties, left-wing parties, and with all other parties of different orientations and intellectual and ideological currents).
Many of the tasks of the “CPC Foreign Department” have been carried out online during the period of the Coronavirus pandemic or “Covid-19”, with the aim of introducing the world to China’s achievements in eliminating the pandemic, and how to overcome challenges and learn from the Chinese experience, according to the principle of “common destiny for humanity”.
Here, I can present statistics to understand the most important actual activities of the CPC Foreign Committee. We can identify here that (the CPC Foreign Department or Foreign Liaison Department) has succeeded in (communicating with more than 600 political organizations in more than 160 countries in the world), and these external contacts have increased during the same year of appointing the Comrade “Xi Jinping” in reign. The number and percentage of high-level party meetings between (the external department of the Communist Party with all foreign political parties increased by more than 50% between 2012 and 2017, until the total of those meetings reached more than 230 annual meetings).
Some academics in the West have described the activities of the CPC’s Foreign Department as being similar to the “New Comintern”, that is meaning, the formation of an institutionalized communist regime led by China, which is (similar to the old international communist movement), led by the former Soviet Union before its disintegration.
From my analytical and academic point of view, it is noted that (there is a fundamental difference between the communist system of China compared to other political systems such as Western democracy), China does not preach or advocate the adoption of communism, and its only goal is to prove that countries can become richer without being Democracy in the literal sense that some are trying to export to us, and this message is receptive to politicians who see that the checks and balances of democracy in the same Western liberal concept are disturbing, with their call to change regimes according to the dictates and conditions of the West.
The Chinese President, Comrade “Xi Jinping”, played a major role through his presence and activities within the CPC’s external communication and work committees with the world before he took power in the first place, and head of the “Central Institute for the Qualification of Communist Party of China Leaders”, from which he was rehabilitated and nominated to become the country’s president in 2013.
After Comrade “Xi Jinping” assumed power in China in 2013, he was more confident in the ideas of the Communist Party and the consolidation of its ideology among everyone, especially among the youth and training young people on party principles for the advancement of the Chinese nation. Hence, the Communist Party only started working on increasing its influence on private sector companies in a more specific and accurate way in a strategy known as: (the party building strategy that baptizes everyone), meaning: forming party committees in all Chinese companies, including those belonging to the private sector or to individuals, so that it can be considered whether the company’s decisions are in line with the policies of the government and the “CPC” or not?
The late founder of modern Singapore “Lee Kuan Yew”, described, in an interview with American foreign policy experts “Graham Allison & Robert Blackwill”, in 2012, before Comrade “Xi Jinping” took office, saying that:
“Xi Jinping has iron in his soul more than former President “Hu Jintao”, who came to power without going through the trials and tribulations of “Xi Jinping”. In the sense of referring to the long experience of Comrade “Xi”, given his presence and passing through all party positions in the “CPC” and his deep belief in his ideas and spreading the spirit and ideas of the importance of ideological education sound of Chinese youth and children, with the aim of consolidating the ideological ideas of the CPC within them through schools and various Chinese and local media)
The role and spread of many (Party committees within all sectors of Chinese society during the era of Comrade “Xi”, with the aim of collectively uniting with the policies and leaders of the Communist Party of China), and we can understand the request of the Chinese President, Comrade “Xi Jinping” from the private sector to (Unite around the Communist Party, its policies and leaders to jointly advance the Chinese state), and accordingly, “Yi Qing”, as the responsible for China Federation of Industry and Commerce has ordered to open (party committees supervised by the Communist Party to apply the state policies and laws and their interconnection together to defend the interests of the Chinese nation, especially abroad).
Based on the immediately preceding point, we can notify that “Yi Qing”, as a senior official of the China Federation of Industry and Commerce, called on all companies and private sectors to establish (human resources departments led by the Communist Party of China and its internal committees, with the formation of monitoring units that allow the Communist Party committees to scrutinize company managers) and knowing the depth of their (commitment to the collective policies of the party and the state before the world). I can note and analyze that all of these measures have extended and included mainly all large Chinese companies and groups in particular, given the diminished role of smaller companies in positively influencing the dissemination of the policies and ideas of the Communist Party abroad decisively compared to those of their counterpart companies with space, business volume and investments larger than them in general China.
I can observe and analyze one of the main activities of the “CPC” Foreign Department during the era of Comrade “Xi Jinping” in organizing training courses for foreign political parties, especially those in developing countries, with the purpose of (understanding and highlighting mainly the policies of the strong central leadership of the Communist ruler Party in China).
Here we can analyze the statement of the Head of the Foreign Department of the Communist Party of China, whose name is “Song Tao”, in an online briefing to party leaders from 36 countries in Sub-Saharan Africa, with the assertion of “Song Tao”, that:
“The achievements of the Communist Party of China in pushing the wheel of comprehensive development has proven the wisdom of the five-year plans adopted and defended by the Communist Party of China to advance the sectors of Chinese society in all fields”
In his capacity as responsible for all the activities of the Party’s foreign committees and effectively communicating with the outside world, we can find out that “Song Tao” has emphasized that:
“The Chinese regime and its Communist Party can be an important reference for its listeners to learn and benefit from its achievements and successes, how to overcome its failures and any negatives or challenges it faces. Because it turns out that collectively believing in the goal in China by sticking to the leadership of the Communist Party and rallying around it, and will put all those plans and measures on the right track”
On this occasion, a general conference was held in Beijing at the end of 2017, which was joined by (leaders and members of political parties from 120 countries around the world, members of the Democratic and Republican parties at the USA has been attended, despite their public criticism of the policies of the Communist Party of China). Chinese President Comrade “Xi Jinping” also delivered the keynote speech, and many participants signed the statement (Beijing Initiative), praising all the policies of the Communist Party of China and Comrade President “Xi Jinping” in the world.
One of the most prominent roles and works of the (Committee for the Outer World of the Communist Party of China) was to explain, publish and review the book of Chinese President Comrade “Xi Jinping”, known internationally as “The Complete Works of President “Xi Jinping”: On Governance and Administration”, which is consists of three parts to explain the view of Chinese President Comrade “Xi” on the methods and arts of government in China and his view of the world through it.
The foreign committee committees of the Communist Party has organized (several training courses and international classes to explain the ideas of the Chinese President Comrade “Xi Jinping’s book” on the methods and systems of Chinese rule). The most remarkable thing to me is the keenness of a number of African leaders and officials from the ruling parties in countries, such as: (Angola, Congo Brazzaville, Ghana, Mozambique, Panama, and Venezuela) to attend classes and training courses organized by the “Foreign Work Committee” of the Communist Party of China to introduce and explain the ideas of Comrade “Xi Jinping” on the (philosophy of governance and administration in China), with the aim of benefiting from the Chinese experience and the experience of Chinese President Comrade “Xi Jinping” in managing the Chinese state’s policies internally and externally around the world, and understanding and explaining the reason for the success of the Chinese experience and its global development initiatives, such as the “Chinese Belt and Road Initiative”, and others.
There are many official websites in China that promote and explain all (the ideas and policies of the Communist Party of China, and how to strengthen these efforts by communicating with the international community and all political parties around the world, including those parties and countries with a different democratic and liberal ideological vision), and that is a clear sign – according to my own analysis and understanding as an Egyptian researcher in Chinese Politics – to open up the Communist Party of China, and its great willingness to cooperate with everyone and all partners and other parties around the world, including those who differ with it ideologically and ideologically.
Here, we can identify that the (External Department of the Foreign Political Communication of the ruling Communist Party of China with the world) also laid the foundation stone for building ideological schools for the ideas and policies of the Communist Party of China, most notably the opening of (The Ideological School of the Communist Party of China in Tanzania in 2018), and this Tanzanian school is funded Completely from China and the CPC Foreign Liaison Committee, the opening ceremony of the Ideological School in Tanzania was attended by “Mr.Song Tao”, in his capacity as an official and main representative of the Communist Party of the Chinese state, and as the official head and representative of the CPC External Liaison Committee, as well as the presence and participation of many Among the African officials in the opening of the communist ideological school in Tanzania, as representatives of a number of African parties ruling several African countries friendly to China, such as: (South Africa, Angola, Mozambique, Namibia, and Zimbabwe).
The new thing that stopped me in studying and analyzing here, is that a number of African countries that are internationally classified as democratic countries, such as: (Ghana, Kkenya and South Africa), the Foreign Department of the Communist Party of China sponsored several visits by delegations from those democratic parties. To China, in the presence of the leaders of African democratic ruling parties, with the aim of (studying the form and construction of parties, governance and all policies related to China and its Communist Party).
Most notably, the “New National Party of Ghana”, which is currently the ruling party in Ghana, asked for many trainings from the Communist Party of China and its Committee and External Communication Department, in order to (enhance skills Ideology of Ghanaian New National Party Members).
We can notify that the (formerly ruling Democratic National Congress of Ghana) sent dozens of its employees to China to receive and learn such training, and the (Ghana Democratic National Congress) also opened a leadership school in the Ghanaian capital that provides educational programs and materials created by the Chinese Communist Party. It aims to spread its ideas and adopt its policies among the members, despite the different and different ideological views of the Ghanaian party.
We conclude through our analysis of the most prominent roles of the International Liaison Committee of the Central Committee of the ruling Communist Party in China, that it is (the eye through which the world and its political parties see China and its ruling Communist Party). Here, the importance of the document issued by the “Propaganda Department of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China” on August 16, 2021, entitled: “The Chinese Communist Party: Its Mission and Contributions”, comes in emphasizing the importance of the “Chinese people” themselves at the heart of the “people’s government and the people’s army”. In order to achieve the great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation, which is already confirmed by all the documents of the International Liaison Committee of the ruling Communist Party, on the role of the ruling Communist Party and its main committees in discussing all issues of concern to the Chinese people, such as: (five-year plan, drafting reports submitted by the Secretary-General of the Communist Party of China to the National Congress of the Communist Party of China, and the plenary sessions of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China), all of which aim to affirm the advancement of the Chinese nation and the Chinese people before the world, and the role of the ruling Communist Party in achieving this.
The global role of CPC and Xi Jinping in promoting a dialogue among civilizations
The ruling Communist Party of China has hosted a “Dialogue on Exchange and Common Learning among Civilizations” on January 10, 2022, which was held in its second session, was attended by Vice Chairman of the Chinese Parliament “Ji Bingchuan”, Foreign Minister of the Communist Party of China “Song Tao”, and a number of among the senior leaders and officials of the Chinese state, with the participation of many political elites from former heads of government and officials of international and national organizations and bodies concerned with dialogue among civilizations and spreading the culture of coexistence, including the former Director-General of “UNESCO”. The ruling Communist Party of China and Chinese President “Xi Jinping” play a prominent role in promoting dialogue among civilizations in the world with an open Chinese vision to all, in accordance with the principle of “the common future of mankind”.
So, according to my area of expertise and especialising in Chinese political affairs, and my PhD thesis dissertation has already been focused several years ago on all policies related to the comrades of the Communist Party of China and its political elites, the Egyptian researcher will analyze the Chinese vision to the dialogue among the, as follows:
The Communist Party of China “CPC” and President “Xi Jinping’s rapprochement” with all friends around the world: The CPC seeks to open up to more friends around the world. Therefore, the “CPC” maintains regular communications with more than (400 parties and political organizations in more than 160 countries in the world), and its circle of friends is constantly expanding. Looking to the future, the “CPC” is keenly to strengthen communications with all of the parties of the world, share Party-building and state-rule experiences, conduct exchange and dialogue among civilizations, enhance strategic mutual trust, and work with the peoples of the world to advance the “building of a community with a shared future for mankind and the building of a better world hand in hand”.
The Communist Party of China and President “Xi Jinping” set a unique principle for the global vision of learning and benefiting from the civilizational achievements: This vision is based on respecting of peoples and nations, and giving the rights of differences among all, according to the actual conditions of every country and its internal circumstances.
The theory of the Chinese Communist Party known as “civilizational innovations” to open up to the peoples and civilizations of the world and support the policy of difference: The theory of “civilizational innovations” is based on respect for peoples and their differences with openness to all the features of progress achieved by the peoples of the countries of the world, through keenness on dialogue, exchange and cooperation with peoples and parties from all over the world, with the Communist Party of China “CPC”, declaring its full support for those peoples in promoting cultural exchange and people-to-people friendship between them and China.
Develop a plan for the Communist Party of China “CPC” to share its experiences globally with countries and political parties around the world: The leaders and officials of the Communist Party in China affirmed their keenness to support global dialogue between China and all countries and peoples during the next five years, with the Communist Party of China “CPC” pledging to provide an opportunity for 15,000 people from the political parties that are representing all of the different countries of the world to conduct the exchange in China. The most prominent here, is the call of Chinese President “Xi Jinping” for the establishment of a (clear institutional mechanism) aimed at the regular holding of the “High-level Dialogue Conference between the Communist Party of China and World Parties”, so that it becomes a high-level political platform with wide representation and global influence.
All the speeches of the Chinese President, Comrade “Xi Jinping”, affirmed China’s theory of “common global development contributions”: This theory becomes clear after the Corona pandemic, by providing medical and health assistance to all countries and peoples to get rid of the negative effects of the global epidemic, and here China also provided a huge amount of (free aid, preferential loans, technical, human and intellectual support to all developing countries), with the focus of Chinese state leaders and officials within the framework of the “Chinese Belt and Road Initiative” on building a large number of projects in order to advance its economic and social development and improve the livelihood of its people.
The role of Chinese workers and citizens around the world in enhancing China’s image in the civilized dialogue between China and the world, especially in developing and African countries: Perhaps what surprised me personally as a specialist in Chinese affairs specifically is the presence of thousands of Chinese scientists, engineers, businessmen, technicians, doctors, teachers, workers and volunteers who work. Now virtually in a large number of developing countries, working with local people to change their destiny hand in hand and side by side, according to Comrade “Xi Jinping’s clear principle of China’s support for the common destiny of mankind”.
The declaration of the Nineteenth National Congress of the Communist Party of China to implement the “Plan for a Prosperous Society of the Chinese People and All Peoples of the World” by the year 2050: According to the planning issued by the (Nineteenth National Congress of the Communist Party of China), it was affirmed that by 2020, China will achieve building a moderately prosperous society in all respects, by 2035 it will basically achieve socialist modernization, and by 2050, China will achieve the construction of a strong, prosperous, democratic, civilized and harmonious modern socialist country for the well-being of the Chinese people and the rest of the world alike. This was confirmed by the leaders of the Communist Party of China in calling on the parties in the world to participate in China in creating more opportunities for cooperation and working to advance a (joint development and prosperity) among the various countries of the world.
China’s role in maintaining global peace: The Chinese state participates in all international forums to promote global stability and peace, and at the present time, China contributes externally to the (payment of more than 36,000 Chinese peacekeeping forces internationally), China has also become a major contributor of forces and funds in the UN peacekeeping operations globally. We find that China has a major role in “maintaining international peace and security and managing conflicts globally”, through the presence of more than (2,500 Chinese officers and soldiers to maintain peace and security in 8 regions for peacekeeping missions), despite the difficulties and dangers they face.
Chinese President “Xi Jinping’s call” to reform and build the global governance system: Comrade Xi Jinping’s call to advance the development of the international political and economic system in a more justice and rational direction, President “Xi Jinping” emphasized in all his political speeches on “China never seeks hegemony, and does not harm others or expand abroad”, and focusing all China’s efforts on achieving development at the international level among all partners and friends.
The Communist Party of China’s call for all political parties around the world to develop “a new theory and foundations for building world peace and joint contribution to global development and protection of the international order: In confirmation of that call from the comrades in the ruling Communist Party in China, their call came to work with all countries of the world, most notably I have the serious emphasis on “China not importing the foreign style from abroad, and not exporting the Chinese style also abroad”, and thus China’s clarity in not forcing all other countries to copy and imitate the way China works.
Chinese President Comrade “Xi Jinping” and the leaders of the Communist Party of China (CPC) called to “narrow the gap between the North and the South”: The Chinese view is to achieve economic globalization based on (openness, inclusiveness, public benefit, balance and mutual gain), and to create conducive conditions to the common development of all mankind and work together to advance development and prosperity for the countries of the world, and to eradicate poverty and underdevelopment, from which many peoples around the world still suffer.
The speeches of the Chinese President, Comrade “Xi Jinping”, affirmed the application of the principle of “building a community with a shared future for mankind” by introducing the “Chinese Belt and Road” initiative: that is why the Chinese keenness on modernization and construction globally and helping everyone without exception achieve (the Joint Construction of the Belt and the Road), as a global platform for activating cooperation between the countries concerned to achieve common development.
China’s global affirmation to respect the right of countries and peoples to choose and differ and build a common community for humanity: This principle is rooted in all principles and documents advocated by the Communist Party of China and its companions, with their affirmation of respecting differences between different countries of the world, and avoiding any differences, contradictions or frictions. It impedes the civilized dialogue between everyone, and raised the Chinese civilizational principle that “all people are belonging to one family”, as they live under “one sky and one planet on Earth”. Therefore, all the peoples of the world should adhere to the idea of “all under heaven from one family”, and search for common ground while leaving aside differences and making joint efforts for (building a community with a shared future for humanity).
In conclusion, the essence of the idea of Chinese dialogue, which is meaningful to all countries, peoples and civilizations around the world, is the belief of the Chinese communist leaders and Chinese comrade “Xi Jinping”, and the affirmation of the belief of the Chinese nation in the principle of “all under heaven from one family”, by reference to the Chinese civilizational heritage, which calls for “loving of all people and creatures, make all nations live together in peace and a world of greater harmony”. This was translated by the political discourses of the Communist Party of China and its General Secretary, President “Xi Jinping”, and their affirmation of the Chinese nation’s aspiration to live in a better world, and everyone’s pursuit of justice for the public interest.
Japan’s Rohingya Policy: Deviation From Long-held Distinction
The story of Japan long pervasive in Bangladesh even across the world consists of two distinct aspects. One is the horrific nuclear bomb attack on Hiroshima and Nagasaki in 1945 and other is the Japanese people’s modesty, magnanimity and their national standing for the cause of humanity. Disproportionate response to Japan’s pre-war action with nuclear weapons and subsequent death of millions mostly civilian are still recalled with awful astonishment. Even as a testimony of suffering by the millions of ‘Hibakusha’, the post-war irradiated victims, the heart wrenching story of Sadako Sasaki and her arduous efforts to survive still haunts the people across the world. Similarly victimized for varied reasons, Bangali and Bangladeshi people always stood in solidarity with Japan. The legendary Bangali Jurist Radhabinod Pal and his prudential standing in ‘Tokyo Trial’ to defend Japan from wholesale allegation of committing war crime symbolize that solidarity. And Bangladesh is among the forefront countries to set up peace stone in Okinawa Peace Memorial Park.
The story of Japanese people’s modesty, charity and national standing for the just cause of humanity especially at the time of our independence struggle and post-war reconstruction effort is quite prevalent in Bangladesh. Japan was the first country to send delegation to newly independent Bangladesh in a bid to aid economic and infrastructural reconstruction. The name like ‘Shapla Neer’, a well renowned Japanese NGO, or JICA, Japan International Cooperation Agency, resonates Japanese largesse and support to Bangladesh. Half of a century old Bilateral relation between Bangladesh and Japan is characterized with reciprocity and the reverence of Bangladeshi people to Japan. And this relational reverence to Japan is more to do with Japan’s long-standing stance for just and humanitarian cause than its formidable economic position.
But given the Japan’s inertia, in some cases defiance, in response to the one of the greatest injustices in 21st century- Rohingya refugee crisis, it seems that Japan has substantially drifted away over the time from its position of long-held soft power strength- reputation of being benign to humanitarian cause. In the name of policy of non-interference, Japan has constantly defied the brutality unleashed by Myanmar military junta. Even as a blow to the very cause of humanity, in many cases they had cozied up to perpetrators. Let alone rendering any support to global initiatives to the cause, Japan stood in defiance to the collective steps of targeted sanctions or bringing perpetrators to the justice for parochial geopolitical and economical interests. Japan’s parochialism in Myanmar policy regarding Rohingya crisis has brought her to the same footing of It’s geopolitical rival, China. Both countries have been upholding their geostrategic interests above the greater humanitarian conviction even the crisis took the genocidal turn in August, 2017. Constantly blurring policy line between China and Japan questions the very strength of distinct Japanese way to the world.
Japan’s policy of non-interference regarding Rohingya crisis stands on the naive notion that over the time, through the economic development, Myanmar would go through the continuous democratic evolution and eventually embrace the inclusive governance values. But blow to this very notion, the recent coup at nascent stage of democracy has made it clear that the Myanmar military machine is impossible to be extricated from state mechanism. And state-sponsored apartheid policies against the Rohingya minority will surely follow the past precedents if not halted with harsh responses.
Again Japan’s Rohingya policy doesn’t reflect very standing of its own people. Officially Japan never recognise Rohingya people as separate ethnic minority native for long in Myanmar. They use ‘Muslim’, ‘Rakhine Muslim’ even ‘Bangali’, a derogatory term used in Myanmar to indicate Rohingya as illegal Bangladeshi immigrants, in their Official statements. But clear contrast to the official line, Japanese media and civil societies use the term ‘Rohingya’ to denote the ethnic entity. This contrasting line, given the high degree of reflection and integration between Japanese media and people, demonstrates the dearth of democratic principle in Japan’s foreign policy position.
Another deviation in Japan’s foreign policy orientation toward Rohingya crisis is its conspicuous apathy to mobilise its position of strength, economic one in Myanmar and political in global platforms like United Nations, to contribute to the resolution of crisis. Historically Japan has considerable economic footings in Myanmar, given its position of being 6th largest foreign direct investor, 3rd largest importer and 7th largest exporter to Myanmar. But rather than mechanizing the economic might to tame Myanmar’s policy line toward the resolution of crisis, it has been showing clear apathy to that end and has continuously been toeing the line demarcated with geopolitical and geo-economical colour.
Over 1 million Rohingya in Bangladesh along with hundreds of thousands across the world have been lingering to return to their birth land and loitering for Justice to the brutality unleashed to them. Bangladesh with limited resources stood by the them and has been voicing for their justice in international platforms. But if that voice from tiny country like Bangladesh for broader cause of humanity is not heard and responded by powerful ones like Japan, Justice will continue to cry in seclusion. As famous maxim tells us,” Justice delayed is Justice denied”, how much delay does it necessitate to awaken the world to stand for Rohingya cause?
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