The China neglect

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"Even though China and the US are fighting over trade and tariffs right now, both countries are dependent on each other. They are the two strongest economies in the world..."

I was born in 1949 (yes, I am that old!). That is the same year Mainland China fell to the communists. As a nation, we were concerned, as there were so many people living there. But the main threat was the much more advanced, Soviet Union. Besides, we were still war weary from World War II.
To many, China was a big country who was still trying to crawl out of the dark ages. But - for the past 70 years, China has been undergoing a MASSIVE change. So much so, by the time we closely focused our vision back on Asia, China became one of the leading economies in the world. And the designs for even more power and glory are in the offing.
China, with 1.4B people, is now a force to be reckoned with. Under Mao right after the revolution, the main challenge was to keep everyone fed. To make this new system work. But during the reign of Mao, China was run pretty much by the book, Communist. But - for the past six plus years, the new ruler of China, the General Secretary of the Communist Party, has been Xi Jinping. He is a leader like China has never had before. His designs for China go out to the horizon and beyond.
How powerful is Xi? In 2018, Forbes called him the most powerful leader in the world. More so than Putin. More so than Trump. And meanwhile back in the United States, as China was evolving from agrarian to a world wide manufacturing economy, we allowed China to eat our lunch. By the time Trump became President, our trade imbalance with China was staggering - over $400B in 2018. Plus, the Chinese own 28% of our public debt. Can President Trump normalize this mess? Hopefully - but it will be like turning a battleship around in a bathtub.
The Chinese dream big these days. Blue water Navy, and more. Not only do they want to be the world leader in AI (which without controls could be very dangerous), but they also are working on something called the Belt and Road Initiative. The Belt and Road Initiative is a very ambitious plan to connect many countries together for trading purposes. It will involve road, rail and sea, and will be huge. So large, that to complete it will take until 2049 - the 100th anniversary of Communist China.
Even though China and the US are fighting over trade and tariffs right now, both countries are dependent on each other. They are the two strongest economies in the world - and they trade quite a bit with each other. I believe this trade war is far from over. The Huawei issue is going to complicate things, even though Trump made a concession to Xi while in Japan. This trade war, and how it will be played out, will be one for the history books.
Have we neglected China in the past? I think so. Are we neglecting China right now? Not a bit - China is showing up bright on the President's radar. If we can forge the right kind of deal with China, and work together on things that matter, the whole world will benefit. If not, well, stay tuned. Things could then get very interesting.