At the World Economic Forum, China President Xi Jinping made clear that his country is submerged in a self- reinvention exercise which includes revitalization of Confucian thinking and practices.
Accordingly he was more concerned with increasing the size of the Chinese middle class than facing off the United States in a worldwide competition for power.
To his mind, promoting Confucian thinking was far more important than discussing the One China Policy with the U.S.A.
He thus decided to stay mum up and until the U.S. realized how misguided its position on the subject was.
Confucius, a 5th century B.C. Chinese sage, believed in compassion as the ruling principle to build just and balanced societies.
Balanced societies seek harmony and harmony makes government virtually unnecessary.
Rulers should thus learn self-discipline and govern subjects by their own example, treating them with love and concern.
“If the people be led by laws, and uniformity among them be sought by punishments, they will try to escape punishment and have no sense of shame. If they are led by virtue, and uniformity sought among them through the practice of ritual propriety, they will possess a sense of shame and come to you of their own accord.”
This transformational power held by virtue would account for happy communities, prosperous economies and peaceful relations.
Virtue would further enhance knowledge and vision among practitioners thereby incrementing the world stock of wisdom.
As wisdom takes over relations among nations violence is deterred and correction of past misdeeds opens new avenues for understanding.
And as Xi Jinping took refuge in the Confucian logics, the U.S. bounced back into the One China Policy after a brief flirt with Tsai Ing-Wen the president of Taiwan who also happens to be a Confucian practitioner and soon let it be known that there is a millennial approach to unification that is shared on both shores of the Taiwan Strait and which will allow the today island nation to be part of the Chinese union on terms which are different from those ruling past annexations but that are kept among Confucians.
As this became apparent and geopolitics set in to lighten the heart of our President Donald J. Trump, the much expected faceoff between the eagle and the dragon boiled down to exchanges of notes among diplomatic bureaucracies.
Published by Latin American Herald Tribune on February 12th, 2017.
*The opinions published herein are the sole responsibility of its author.*