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People walk past a Chinese flag near the Forbidden City during National Day holidays in Beijing, China, 5 October 2021. (Thomas Peter/Reuters)

China will be the US's most difficult opponent

While there may have been some minor tweaks from the US side to smoothen relations with China, the overall suppression and containment of China remains unchanged from the Trump to Biden eras as fundamental differences exist between the two countries, says Wu Guo.
Chinese national flags displayed at Wong Tai Sin Temple to mark National Day in Hong Kong, China, on 1 October 2021. (Paul Yeung/Bloomberg)

China's reputation in major countries is at its worst. Can it save itself?

China’s accomplishments in the past four decades deserve respect and emulation from many countries across the globe, despite disparagement from the West. However, China may squander this opportunity to gain goodwill by erring on two fronts: its attitude towards liberalism, and its handling of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union’s legacy. Making a wrong move on either of these fronts can easily diminish its chances of becoming “one of the good guys” in international politics.
Students wave flags of China and the Communist Party of China before celebrations in Beijing, China, on 1 July 2021, to mark the 100th anniversary of the founding of the Communist Party of China. (Wang Zhao/AFP)

Self-assessment: How will the Chinese Communist Party evaluate the Xi Jinping era thus far?

The sixth plenary session of the 19th Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee, the penultimate one before the end of the current term, will be held this November. The CPC has historically focused on issues of ideology and party building during such plenary sessions. Analysts believe the meeting will summarise the achievements of the CPC particularly during President Xi Jinping's era and point the way to future development. However, will there be reflections of previous mistakes and lessons, including a reassessment of the June Fourth incident?
A billboard featuring Chinese President Xi Jinping is displayed at a compound in Shanghai, China, on 30 August 2021. (Qilai Shen/Bloomberg)

A new paradigm needed: China cannot achieve 'common prosperity' with Marxism and class struggle

While Marxism failed 30 years ago in the case of the Soviet Union, the Chinese Communist Party of today claims that it owes its success to the “theoretical advantage” of Marxism. However, rather than hanging on to ideological orthodoxy, a revolution of ideologies is needed to steer the building of an inclusive and harmonious society undergoing the fourth industrialisation. In the new paradigm, much thought will need to go into thinking through knotty issues such as the role of the market in socialism, the value of labour in a hi-tech economy and the role that entrepreneurs can play as builders of socialism.
China's Quan Hongchan is congratulated by a coach after winning the women's 10m platform diving finals event during the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at the Tokyo Aquatics Centre in Tokyo, Japan on 5 August 2021. (Oli Scarff/AFP)

China's diving sensation Quan Hongchan: Is her rural family 'poor'?

Reflecting on the background of Chinese diving Olympic champion Quan Hongchan, David Ng makes some observations about the urban-rural divide in China. He notes that after years of China’s rapid development, rural folk are still playing catch up economically, but they have not ruled themselves out of achieving success. Their own motivation will get them far, sometimes even as far as achieving Olympic glory.
Afghans walk along fences as they arrive in Pakistan through the Pakistan-Afghanistan border crossing point in Chaman on 24 August 2021 following Taliban's military takeover of Afghanistan. (AFP)

Afghanistan in the calculations of India, Pakistan and China: Is there common ground among rivals and allies?

A triumphant Taliban presents unique and unprecedented challenges for Afghanistan’s neighbours. As the international spotlight continues to shine on the Taliban, it remains difficult to discern between reality and ruse in the Taliban’s rhetoric. The future of Afghanistan appears uncertain, and most countries remain watchful. India has refrained from advancing a clear diplomatic position while China and Pakistan have shown a cautious willingness to engage with the Taliban. While all three countries view Afghanistan with diverging agendas, a stable, inclusive Afghanistan remains in their mutual interest.
Chinese President Xi Jinping attends a welcoming ceremony for Greek President Prokopis Pavlopoulos outside the Great Hall of the People, in Beijing, China, 14 May 2019. (Jason Lee/Reuters)

Chinese youth will be imbued with tenets of Xi Jinping Thought through school curriculum

The Chinese Ministry of Education has announced that Xi Jinping Thought will be integrated into the school curriculum from primary to university level. What does this mean for students, and what is the aim of the authorities? Zaobao correspondent Wong Siew Fong takes a closer look.
US President Joe Biden gestures towards members of the media as he arrives at the White House following a stay in Delaware, in Washington, US, 10 August 2021. (Evelyn Hockstein/Reuters)

The flaws in Biden’s China policy

The Biden administration does not seem to have changed course from the US’s former hardline approach towards China. In fact, it is resolute in adopting a competitive stance. Even so, its tactics may not be enough to keep China from moving ahead.
People look at images of late chairman Mao Zedong of the Chinese Communist Party at the Museum of the Communist Party of China that was opened ahead of the 100th founding anniversary of the Party in Beijing, China, 25 June 2021. (Thomas Peter/Reuters)

China idol: Mao Zedong makes a comeback among Chinese youth

China’s youth today are turning to Mao Zedong for inspiration amid a crushing sense of social immobility and injustice. But Wang Qingmin recalls the Mao era to be one of violent political struggles, anti-intellectualism, and cult of personality. Is a return to Mao really the answer?