Under Xi, China Aims to Be the World’s Middle Kingdom

China’s 19th National Party Congress has placed President Xi Jinping on a pedestal equal to that of Mao Zedong, founder of communist China. Xi promises to lead the modern socialist nation that is “prosperous, strong, democratic, culturally advanced, harmonious” and offer a new model and choice of governance for developing nations. Gone is the era guided by Deng’s admonition that China should “keep a low profile and bide its time,” explains author Börje Ljunggren, senior associate of the Swedish Institute of International Affairs and former Swedish ambassador to China. “Donald Trump’s degrading of the United States and Europe’s drifting search for identity have created irresistible strategic opportunities.” Stability remains China’s priority, and governance characterized by stern and strong state controls, as dictated by the Chinese Communist Party, may not be appealing for the rest of the world. No immediate successor is in place, hubris runs high, and Xi controls China’s destiny, for better or worse, over the next five years or more. – YaleGlobal