This story was originally published by the WND News Center.
China might be bluffing America with its aggressive statements and challenges.
But it might not.
And that means, according to an analysis by China expert Gordon Chang at the Gatestone Institute, where he is a distinguished senior fellow, U.S. leaders need to be matching its "largest military buildup since the Second World War."
"The world needs to look at what the Chinese leadership is in fact doing. Xi [Jinping] appointed what is now known as his 'war cabinet' in October, at the Communist Party's 20th National Congress; he is implementing the largest military buildup since the Second World War; he has been trying to sanctions-proof his regime; and he is mobilizing the civilian population for war. Communist Party cadres, for example, are taking over privately owned factories and converting them from civilian to military production," Chang explained.
"In the latest move, China's regime is establishing National Defense Mobilization Offices across the country. The Reservists Law went into effect on the first of this month. Whatever China intends, its intended victims need to match its preparations. There has never been a time when it has been more important to deter the People's Republic of China."
The comments of late have been incendiary. China's Foreign Minister Qin Gang said recently, "If the U.S. doesn't hit the brakes and continues to barrel down the wrong track, no amount of guardrails can prevent the carriage from derailing and crashing, and there will surely be conflict and confrontation."
Xi had said just a day before: "Western countries, led by the U.S., are implementing all-round containment, encirclement, and suppression against us."
Chang noted that such comments might be part of a bluff by China. It has, throughout its history, attempted to intimidate opponents into retreat.
Chang explained that's because, "For many reasons, the Chinese fortress is empty at this moment. Among other difficulties, the country's economy is stumbling, debt defaults are continuing, the currency is weakening, food shortages are worsening, localities are running short of cash, and diseases continue to afflict the population. Moreover, the Chinese people are unhappy. Since late October, they have taken to the streets in demonstrations over varied complaints. Some protestors have even demanded the removal of Xi Jinping and the Communist Party."
While he said Chinese rulers "understand that war at this moment would not be in China's interest," that does not mean Americans should feel relieved.
First, he said, not one outside Beijing knows what Chinese leaders intend, so they should watch what the leadership in the Communist regime is doing.
And he said, "Even if all this is the biggest bluff in history, the Chinese military is provoking incidents that could lead to war, especially in the tense climate Xi has created. In December, Chinese troops moved into India's Tawang Sector in Arunachal Pradesh; Chinese planes and naval vessels maneuvered near Taiwan, especially on Christmas Day; there were provocative Chinese moves against Japan in the East China Sea and the Philippines in the South China Sea; and a Chinese fighter jet dangerously intercepted a U.S. Air Force reconnaissance plane in international airspace over the South China Sea."
Then there were those Chinese spy balloons.
"Whatever China's intentions, this cannot end well. Xi Jinping, for instance, will not stop talking about war. The world, and America in particular, need to listen," he wrote.